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-   -   Here it comes: Syria (https://www.pprune.org/military-aviation/513470-here-comes-syria.html)

airsound 23rd Jan 2018 16:55

AvWeek has a good piece by Tony Osborne with AVM Johnny Stringer,
"Royal Air Force Facing Long-Term Fight Against Islamic State Group"

RAF Facing Long-Term Fight Against Islamic State Group | Defense content from Aviation Week


airsound

ORAC 31st Jan 2018 07:20

Snuck out in today’s news.

Sarin gas that killed thousands in Damascus is from Assad’s stockpiles

Chemical weapons inspectors have for the first time linked the sarin gas used in an attack in Damascus in 2013 to President Assad’s stockpiles. The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) matched “markers” on samples taken from the site of the attack in rebel-held eastern Ghouta with sarin stocks handed over to the UN by Assad’s government in 2014.

The finding supports western and Syrian opposition claims that regime forces carried out the attack in the early hours of August 21, 2013, killing more than a thousand people. Assad has always denied responsibility, claiming that rebels carried out the attack themselves in order to push the West towards military intervention. The OPCW also found links between Assad’s sarin stocks and the chemicals dropped on the town of Khan al-Assal in Aleppo province in March 2013, in what was believed to be the first chemical attack of the war. It had already reported the same link with the attack in the Idlib town of Khan Sheikhoun last April. “It was serious matching and serious laboratory work,” a source at the OPCW told Reuters.

Other experts have confirmed that the matching components in the various samples constituted solid proof that the chemicals used on civilians in the three attacks came from Syrian government stockpiles. “A match of samples from the 2013 Ghouta attacks to tests of chemicals in the Syrian stockpile is the equivalent of DNA evidence: definitive proof,” said Amy Smithson, a US non-proliferation expert.

The findings are, however, unlikely to result in any concrete action being taken against Assad. The joint UN and OPCW inquiry was halted in November after Russia blocked a motion to renew its mandate........

A_Van 31st Jan 2018 10:06

Nonsense about analogy with DNA. "Jihadmobils" used by ISIS are based on Toyota SUV and belonged to somebody before they were taken by terrorists. So, blame the previous hosts they were stolen from, or Toyota?
In the chaos that was in Syria in 2013 (and still is), various groups or rebels and terrorists could capture the governmentals stocks and use it later.


When the US destroyed one of the Assad's AF base about a year ago, the explanation was that chem. weapons were there. But when the US were invited to visit it after and collect whatever samples they would find, they refused.

unmanned_droid 31st Jan 2018 11:30


Originally Posted by A_Van (Post 10037258)
Nonsense about analogy with DNA. "Jihadmobils" used by ISIS are based on Toyota SUV and belonged to somebody before they were taken by terrorists. So, blame the previous hosts they were stolen from, or Toyota?
In the chaos that was in Syria in 2013 (and still is), various groups or rebels and terrorists could capture the governmentals stocks and use it later.


When the US destroyed one of the Assad's AF base about a year ago, the explanation was that chem. weapons were there. But when the US were invited to visit it after and collect whatever samples they would find, they refused.

And were the terrorists able to capture and operate the equipment required to deploy these chemical weapons?

sandiego89 1st Feb 2018 18:20


Originally Posted by A_Van (Post 10037258)
......
When the US destroyed one of the Assad's AF base about a year ago, the explanation was that chem. weapons were there. But when the US were invited to visit it after and collect whatever samples they would find, they refused.


I imagine such an "inspection" would have been effective as the other ones that were arranged in Iran, Syria, Iraq...


"Yes, we will be very happy open that building for you...how about two weeks from today? After lunch OK?" Surprise, surprise- nothing in the warehouse.....


An older, but perhaps relevant account:


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-m...-idUSKCN1AX107

ORAC 10th Feb 2018 06:42

Crew (2) reported to have successfully ejected and be recovering in hospital.

Israeli fighter jet shot down by Syrian fire, says military

Syrian anti-aircraft fire has shot down an Israeli fighter and Israel struck an Iranian target that had launched an unmanned aircraft into its airspace from Syria, the Israeli military said.

“IDF (Israel Defence Forces) has targeted the Iranian control systems in Syria that sent the [unmanned aircraft] into Israeli airspace. Massive Syrian anti-air fire, one F16 crashed in Israel, pilots safe,” Israeli military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus said on Twitter on Saturday.

The tweet added that Iran was responsible for “this severe violation of Israeli sovereignty. Event ongoing, more to follow”. According to a separate military statement, Israeli forces had identified an “Iranian UAV” launched from Syria and intercepted it in Israeli airspace with a combat helicopter.

Israeli media said the jet crashed in northern Israel.

Syrian state media said air defences opened fire in response to an Israeli act of “aggression” against a military base on Saturday and hit “more than one plane”, citing a military source. “The Israeli enemy entity at dawn today conducted a new aggression against one of the military bases in the central region. Our air defences confronted it and hit more than one plane,” the unidentified military source said.

This is a developing story, please check back for updates......

ORAC 10th Feb 2018 06:51

Israel Downs Iranian Drone, Strikes Syria; Israeli F-16 Shot Down, Pilots Safe

The Israeli army said Saturday morning that it intercepted an Iranian drone launched from Syria into Israeli territory. In response to the provocation, the IDF attacked Iranian targets in Syria. According to the Israeli army, Syrian anti-aircraft missiles targeted an Israeli F-16, prompting the pilots to eject. The plane went down in northern Israel. The two pilots were taken to the hospital in stable condition.

IDF Spokesperson Brigadier General Ronen Manelis said "We identified an Iranian drone UAV which took off from Syrian territory. The drone was identified by IAF systems and was downed by an IAF helicopter. The Iranian drone fell in our territory and is in our possession. As part of the country's defenses, sirens were activated but there was no danger for the residents of Beit She'an. It was decided to attack the trailer from which the Iranians launched the UAV. This was a surgical action deep in Syria, target destroyed."

"This is a serious Iranian attack on Israeli territory. Iran is dragging the region into a situation in which it doesn't know how it will end. We are prepared for a variety of incidents...whoever is responsible for this incident is the one who will pay the price."

Syrian television claimed Saturday morning more than one Israeli aircraft was hit by Syria's defense systems.

Due to Syrian anti-aircraft fire, says the army, rocket sirens sounded in multiple areas of northern Israel, first in the northern Israeli town of Beit She’an and later in the surrounding areas and Golan Heights. Residents reported hearing many explosions in the last half hour and heavy aerial activity in the area near Israel's borders with Jordan and Syria.

The Syrian army and rebels in the Syrian Golan Heights are currently exchanging heavy fire.

ORAC 10th Feb 2018 08:20

JERUSALEM

The Latest on Israel shooting down Iranian drone over Syria (all times local):

10 a.m.

A Syria war monitor says Israel has struck targets in central Syria and the southwestern suburbs of the capital Damascus in two separate and successive waves of airstrikes.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the first round targeted in the central desert area where Syrian troops and their Iranian-backed allies including Hezbollah are known to maintain bases. It cited unconfirmed reports of casualties among Syrian government forces and allied militiamen. The Britain-based Observatory, which monitors the Syria war through a network of activists on the ground, says the second round targeted outposts in the southwestern suburbs of Damascus....

CloudHound 10th Feb 2018 08:50

2 up in an F-16? TF variant or something else?

Gault 10th Feb 2018 08:53


Originally Posted by ORAC (Post 10048142)
JERUSALEM


A Syria war monitor says Israel has struck targets in central Syria and the southwestern suburbs of the capital Damascus in two separate and successive waves of airstrikes.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the first round targeted in the central desert area where Syrian troops and their Iranian-backed allies including Hezbollah are known to maintain bases. It cited unconfirmed reports of casualties among Syrian government forces and allied militiamen. The Britain-based Observatory, which monitors the Syria war through a network of activists on the ground, says the second round targeted outposts in the southwestern suburbs of Damascus....

So as usual, Israel is telling fibs

ORAC 10th Feb 2018 09:06

F-16I Sufa Multirole Fighter - Airforce Technology

https://cdn.airplane-pictures.net/im.../30/340307.jpg

Heathrow Harry 10th Feb 2018 10:01

Syria war: Israeli fighter jet crashes under Syria fire, military says - BBC News

pictures in link

An Israeli F-16 fighter jet has crashed amid Syrian anti-aircraft fire after an offensive against Iranian targets in Syria, the Israeli military says.
The two pilots parachuted to safety before the crash in northern Israel. It is believed to be the first time Israel has lost a jet in the Syrian conflict.
Israel was carrying out strikes after the launch of an Iranian drone into Israel. The drone was intercepted.

Syria accused Israel of "aggression", as Israel then launched more strikes.

"Moments ago, IAF aircraft, targeted the Syrian Aerial Defense System & Iranian targets in Syria. 12 targets, including 3 aerial defense batteries & 4 Iranian military targets, were attacked. Anti-aircraft missiles were fired towards Israel, triggering alarms in northern Israel."
Israeli strikes in Syria are not unusual, the BBC's Middle East correspondent Tom Bateman says, but the loss of an Israeli fighter jet marks a serious escalation.

In a statement, the Israeli military said "a combat helicopter successfully intercepted an Iranian UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] that was launched from Syria and infiltrated Israel". It said the drone was identified quickly and was "under surveillance until the interception". The drone went down on Israeli territory and was "in our possession", IDF spokesperson Brig Gen Ronen Manelis said.

The military said that in response the IDF "targeted Iranian targets in Syria". It said the mission deep inside Syrian territory was successfully completed.
After coming under Syrian anti-aircraft fire, the F-16's two crew ejected and were later taken to hospital. One of them was "severely injured as a result of an emergency evacuation", the IDF said. It was not clear whether the F-16 jet was hit by anti-aircraft fire or went down for other reasons.

It is the first time Israel has lost an aircraft in combat since 2006 when an Israeli helicopter was shot down over Lebanon by a Hezbollah rocket, the Jerusalem Post reports. All five crew on board - including a female flight mechanic - were killed in that incident.

Residents reported hearing a number of explosions and heavy aerial activity in the area near Israel's borders with Jordan and Syria. Syrian state media quoted a military source as saying that the country's air defences opened fire in response to an Israeli act of "aggression" against a military base on Saturday, hitting "more than one plane".


Later on Saturday, the army said a new wave of attacks was launched against 12 Syrian and Iranian targets in Syria. Eight of the Syrian targets belonged to the fourth Syrian division near Damascus, IDF spokesman Jonathan Conricus said. All the Israeli aircraft from this sortie returned safely. "Syrians are playing with fire when they allow Iranians to attack Israel," the spokesman warned. He added that Israel was willing to exact a heavy price in response but "we are not looking to escalate the situation".

Analysis by BBC's diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus
For years Israel has been striking at weapons stores and other facilities in Syria with a single goal - to disrupt and as far as possible to prevent advanced Iranian missiles being delivered to Hezbollah in Lebanon. Syria has often been the conduit for these shipments. But the changing balance of power there, with the Assad regime's survival bolstered by Iranian help, has introduced a powerful new element - a direct Iranian role in the crisis.

A more confident Iran is alleged by Israel to be setting up bases in Syria (whether for its own or its proxy Shia militia forces is unclear). But it is also alleged to be developing missile factories, both there and in Lebanon, to make the supply lines to Hezbollah less vulnerable. Israel's campaign to disrupt missile supplies is becoming ever more complex. And Iran risks becoming a direct actor in this conflict, ever closer to Israel's own borders.

ORAC 10th Feb 2018 18:05

Interesting to read that the Syrians/Iranians fired over 25 SAM to take down the Israeli F-16 - and the Israelis have now destroyed the vast majority of all the Syrian SAM sites in retaliation.....

Heathrow Harry 10th Feb 2018 21:43

they claim...

but even so its like hitting moles with a hammer - they'll pop up again quite quickly....

Wokkafans 10th Feb 2018 22:48


Originally Posted by Gault (Post 10048175)
So as usual, Israel is telling fibs


You do realise that the SOHR is one guy living in a flat above his clothes shop in Coventry. :=:rolleyes:

glad rag 11th Feb 2018 01:15

If they wanted to, the IAF could wipe Putins Patriots off the face of the earth.. and anyone else who stuck their nose in.

jolihokistix 11th Feb 2018 03:27

Quote: The Britain-based Observatory, which monitors the Syria war through a network of activists on the ground..."
Yes Wokkafans, we all know the facts regarding this lone voice collating reports from the ground. Would you prefer he lived in a palace?


We have the Syrian version, the Israeli version, and now the version of this network on the ground. There is little else available, so I for one am thankful for what triangulation there is. Besides, the Observatory has a pretty good track record of neutrality, on balance, and much of the information they provide cannot be found anywhere else.

ORAC 11th Feb 2018 13:41

Israeli Wounded Pilot Upgraded to Stable Condition

A pilot involved in Saturday's crash of an Israeli jet was upgraded to moderate condition, Rambam Medical Center in Haifa announced on Sunday. Trauma Unit director Dr. Yaron Bar Lavie said the pilot was removed from his respirator and he is fully conscious. "We are happy to report that the condition of the pilot has gotten better. We have ceased the anesthesia and he has returned to full consciousness ... and now his condition is good. His wife his with him and he's talking to her," said Bar-Lavi.

President Reuven Rivlin visited the wounded pilot on Sunday afternoon.

The second pilot of the jet that was allegedly shot down by Syrian anti-aircraft fire, who was mildly wounded, could be released as early as today, Dr. Mickey Halbertal, deputy director or the hospital told Army Radio on Sunday morning. Halbertal said the mildly wounded pilot suffered injuries from his parachute descent and the other one suffered a penetrating wound to his chest and abdomen. "His chances for healing are good. There will be pain and treatments, but I assess he will recuperate."

Brat 12th Feb 2018 20:04

Meanwhile the cost of shooting down the F16 is being tallied up by Syria and Iran.

When messing with Israel there is always a consequence.

ORAC 13th Feb 2018 16:56

U.S. Strikes Killed Scores of Russia Fighters in Syria, Sources Say

U.S. forces killed scores of Russian mercenaries in Syria last week in what may be the deadliest clash between citizens of the former foes since the Cold War, according to one U.S. official and three Russians familiar with the matter.

More than 200 contract soldiers, mostly Russians fighting on behalf of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad, died in a failed attack on a base held by U.S. and mainly Kurdish forces in the oil-rich Deir Ezzor region, two of the Russians said. The U.S. official put the death toll at about 100, with 200 to 300 injured.

The Russian assault may have been a rogue operation, underscoring the complexity of a conflict that started as a domestic crackdown only to morph into a proxy war involving Islamic extremists, stateless Kurds and regional powers Iran, Turkey and now Israel. Russia’s military said it had nothing to do with the attack and the U.S. accepted the claim. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis called the whole thing “perplexing,” but provided no further details.

President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, declined to comment on reports of Russian casualties, saying the Kremlin only tracks data on the country’s armed forces. Putin talked with U.S. President Donald Trump by phone Monday, but the military action in Syria wasn’t discussed, he said. “This is a big scandal and a reason for an acute international crisis,” said Vladimir Frolov, a former Russian diplomat and lawmaker who’s now an independent political analyst. “But Russia will pretend nothing happened.”......

Last week’s offensive began about 8 kilometers (5 miles) east of the Euphrates River de-confliction line late Feb. 7, when pro-Assad forces fired rounds and advanced in a “battalion-sized formation supported by artillery, tanks, multiple-launch rocket systems and mortars,” Colonel Thomas F. Veale, a spokesman for the U.S. military, said in a statement. The U.S., which has advisers stationed at the base alongside Syrian Democratic Forces troops, responded with aircraft and artillery fire. “Coalition officials were in regular communication with Russian counterparts before, during and after the thwarted, unprovoked attack,” Veale said. No fatalities were reported on the coalition side and “enemy vehicles and personnel who turned around and headed back west were not targeted.”

It’s not clear who was paying the Russian contingent, whether it was Russia directly, Syria, Iran or a third party. Reports in Russian media have said Wagner -- a shadowy organization known as Russia’s answer to Blackwater, now called Academi -- was hired by Assad or his allies to guard Syrian energy assets in exchange for oil concessions. “No one wants to start a world war over a volunteer or a mercenary who wasn’t sent by the state and was hit by Americans,” Vitaly Naumkin, a senior adviser to Russia’s government on Syria, said in an interview......

While Russia’s Defense Ministry didn’t mention mercenaries in its statement, it did say 25 “Syrian” fighters were injured, without elaborating. It accused the U.S. of using its “illegal presence” in Syria as an excuse to “seize economic assets,” even as it kept lines of communication with the U.S. open. Assad’s government in Damascus called the U.S. military action “barbaric” and a “war crime.”

The death toll from the skirmish, already about five times more than Russia’s official losses in Syria, is still rising, according to one mercenary commander who said by phone that dozens of his wounded men are still being treated at military hospitals in St. Petersburg and Moscow. Most of those killed and injured were Russian and Ukrainian, many of them veterans of the separatist conflict in eastern Ukraine, according to Alexander Ionov, who runs a Kremlin-funded group that fosters ties to separatists and who’s personally fought alongside pro-government forces in Syria.

Grigory Yavlinsky, a longtime Russian opposition politician who helped steer democratic reforms after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, called on the authorities to come clean about what happened. “If there has been mass deaths of Russian citizens in Syria, then the relevant authorities, including the general staff of the Russian armed forces, have a duty to inform the country about this and decide who bears responsibility,” Yavlinsky, who is running against Putin in next month’s election, said on Twitter.......


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