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Ukrainian Aircraft down in Iran

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Ukrainian Aircraft down in Iran

Old 16th Dec 2020, 11:51
  #641 (permalink)  
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In the case of Israel and USSR , no, they knew perfectly what they were shooting at , and the decision to shoot down an airliner was given by the higher authority in full knowledge.. Look for the now published reports of Libyan B727 and the Korean707. In the case of Korean 007, we had to wait 10 years or so to get the Russian telephone transcripts that indicated that some Top brass thought it was a civilian airliner, while some others did not and ordered it shot down just in case. The transcripts are available on Wikipedia. In Iran now, yes it looks like they did not know what they were shooting at, like MH17and I excluded those. As to the USS Vincennes /IR case indeed I excluded from my list because we have a good report with exactly what failed and what happened from the US investigation board.

They are a lot more cases of voluntary shooting down civilian aircraft , in the cold war era , check El Al 402 by the Bulgarians in 1955 , or Malev 240 by the Lebanese. in 1975 , the 2 Rhodesians Viscounts airliners in 1978, DHL in Baghdad, etc... ..no misidentification , voluntary civil airliner shot down
And even this year last May , the east African Airways E120 Brasilia in Somalia ( shot down by Ethiopia) the list is long..
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 13:14
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There is one point you missing about it. Both Korean incidents (accidents) have happened after their intrusion into Soviet airspace from a sensitive direction at the height of Cold War, accompanied with USAF activities nearby in case of KAL007. It is the same as no-comms 747 would be heading towards Washington D.C. city centre, ignoring interceptor signals in our days.
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 14:06
  #643 (permalink)  
 
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I've just been reading the report posted by Dave Reid. Something I wasn't previously aware of - maybe I missed it here - is that the missile battery operators had set up the orientation incorrectly:

  • One of these mobile air defence units was located in some proximity to IKA airport, where its operator failed to align it properly, making an enormous directional error of 107 degrees off north;
  • ........
  • The operator mistook a 40-metre long commercial passenger jet taking off and ascending from east to west for some sort of threatening aircraft or missile coming in from west to east;
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Old 16th Dec 2020, 21:03
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Canadian Report

I scanned through the report, and honestly it is a waste of paper on which it was written. The Iranians in their preliminary report have come as close as possible without explicitly saying so that their supposedly invincible Revolutionary Guards have screwed things up in a monumental way. Pretty much everything that affects the aviation aspect of this tragic incident has been answered in that report. It is also clear from the initial reactions and the surprisingly unrestricted access of the local media to the crash site, that for the first 10-12 hours the lower ranks of the government were not aware of what really happened. The 'crucial unanswered questions' raised in the report are all related to the command structure and training level of the Iranian military, and it is quite obvious that they will not answer those questions. Nobody else would. On the other hand, knowing Iran I would expect that those responsible have already received a far harsher punishment than any counterpart in western countries under similar circumstances.
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 02:55
  #645 (permalink)  
 
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Something like, for domestic political consumption

Two things about publication of this report. Given the fact the aviation-related aspects of the incident were almost entirely (if not entirely in fact) already known, and the additional fact the IRG's command echelons and those of other command authorities in their country certainly are not going to participate in a publicly accessible inquiry, does the report still serve any purpose? (Both of the givens I've referenced, as noted in previous posts.)

The litigation options for victims' families probably are quite limited, for a number of reasons, in any effort to gain recourse for the loss of loved ones. So a report such as this provides some substitute sense of recourse - quite limited but better than nothing. So not exactly for mere political stances, but in a similar ballpark.

Maybe it's reading too much into the notion of Montreal's status as the global capital of international civil aviation but when an incident like this strikes at Canadian senses and sensibilities, maybe the subtext (and unspoken premise) is that despite good intentions driving prior efforts to improve operators' decisions about traversing conflict zones, some more robust approach is worth a try. Despite also the litany of prior incidents which suggests that nothing better can be done. . . . . . .

And while this SLF's familiarization with aviation law generally and such shoot-down incidents specifically still is "in work" - every time I read a litany like the ones above there's an entry I hadn't read of before. (Yeah, older lawyers think about curriculum reform as a means of trying to accomplish something, at least, after a mostly wasted existence adding up billable hours.)

[Post-script: another rip through the report compels this addition if not correction - the report certainly describes, in some detail, the steps taken in the context of coping with the tragic incident and mounting some semblance of the necessary response despite enormous hurdles. Secondly, the report while not contending that certain diplomatic and related efforts would greatly reduce (or prevent) incidents of this type, does document initiatives launched by Canadian government offices to address the problem area (Safer Skies Strategy, and the International Coordination and Response Group). I suppose cynicism arrives way too easily these days.... instead of compiling this report - and undertaking the many and varied actions it describes - what actions would detractors have had the Government of Canada take in lieu of what it has done?]

Last edited by WillowRun 6-3; 17th Dec 2020 at 03:33.
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 04:08
  #646 (permalink)  
 
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you’re saying KAL007 no comm in that area is like heading to Washington DC? Not anywhere near any major Russian cities.
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 09:05
  #647 (permalink)  
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Cargo one , final try : there are internationally agreed procedures to intercept civil aircraft , USSR (Russia) signed them . In case of KAL 007 they were not followed and someone high up in the Soviet military gave the order to shoot down a 747 without proper attempt of identification , call on 121,5, forced to land, firing tracers in front , etc...
Initially ( i.e immediately after the accident in 83 ) they said they mistaken it for a USAF RC135, but the R/T and telephone transcripts released in 1993 showed that the Sukoi pilot first flew alongside the 747 knew it was a civilian 747, reported lights ,etc.. but none of the usual interception rules were followed.
And as cessnaxpilot pointed out , there was nothing out there, and they were heading out of Russian airspace when they decided to shoot it down before it entered international waters again .
The Su15 pilot that shot it down gave an interview in 1991 here is an extract what he said :
In a 1991 interview with Zwestia Major Gennadiy Osipovich, pilot of the Su-15 interceptor that shot the 747 down, spoke about his recollections of the events leading up to the shootdown. Contrary to official Soviet statements at the time, he recalled telling ground controllers that there were "blinking lights" .He continued, saying "I saw two rows of windows and knew that this was a Boeing. I knew this was a civilian plane. But for me this meant nothing. It is easy to turn a civilian type of plane into one for military use."[size=8333px] [/size]: "I did not tell the ground that it was a Boeing-type plane; they did not ask me." Later we began to lie about small details: the plane was supposedly flying without running lights or strobe light, that tracer bullets were fired, or that I had radio contact with them on the emergency frequency 121,5, all not true. [size=8333px] [/size]
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 14:36
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ATC Watcher, well one more try from my side too - it is irrelevant whether it was civilian or military aircraft, as correctly quoted by Russian jet pilot. It is an intruder into the airspace from a sensitive direction at the height of the Cold War. Aircraft breaking into Washington DC will be shot these days irrespectively of being a pax 747 or TU-95. The only difference there was no capital or major city but indeed there was plenty of military installations in the area, including air defence and back then it was more important than any city. I don't remember all details of KAL007 chain of events and I'm too lazy to read wiki again but I definitely remember the other KAL B707 was properly warned by the interceptor and have chosen not to follow the commands. You can never judge the actions without taking into account the background of the times.
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 14:48
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I wasn't but a child during the cold war, only some 14 when they tore down the wall.

But I believe that eventhough the war was cold at times, there are no deliberate shoot downs of civilian airliners by the NATO side, where the aircraft has been identified.

Didn't Soviet airliners stray into NATO airspace? Or were the Soviets just more anxious than we were? Or were we just better at the whole intercept and lead out again thing?
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 17:18
  #650 (permalink)  
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Cargo one, I rest my case no point to argue if you made up your mind already and do not want to read the facts. The ICAO reports are also on line, but , yes it need a bit of effort to find them and read them. For info both KALs were shot down leaving Soviet airspace, so no threat as per your DC example .

Jmmoric : good for you, I am unfortunately old enough to remember quite well KAL 007 and a few others . But you are right NATO members or the USA never shot down an airliner that was identified as such . IR655 shot by USS Vincennes was an ID error. The main difference between East and West in those days was that in the West the order to shoot had to come from an elected civil government minister , not a local air defense military commander , which was the case in USSR and its satellites.
I believe that today in modern Russia it is also the political level that can give those orders and not the military anymore, but I leave it to someone more local knowledgeable to correct me .

Back to the topic of this thread , in Iran there are 2 levels of military one is the Revolutionary Guards, aimed at protecting the Islamic revolution and which control the Country's missiles with their own chain of command. . But it is irrelevant in our case since it was a misidentification . The missile operators never thought they were firing at a civil B737, unlike the Russian interceptors pilots on both KAL,
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Old 17th Dec 2020, 21:20
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The headline on one of the Chicago major daily newspapers, in the vending box in one of the O'Hare terminals, shouted the startling news, that a Korean 747 had been shot down by the Russians. It might not have been tanks lined up at CheckPoint Charlie in Berlin in the Kennedy Administration, but it certainly was Cold War vibrations.

But regardless, in this time when Big Data and Artificial Intelligence and various other technologies and organizational techniques are gaining more traction and presence in everything related to civil aviation, is it really the case that command echelons and responsibilities from back in the days of the Cold War are the standards by which incidents are assessed and evaluated? By which corrective actions are determined and sought to be implemented? As I am looking closely still at the new Canadian report, for now, I'll just say if the Cold War operating mindset is what the yardstick is said to be calibrated in, WR 6-3 dissents.
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Old 18th Dec 2020, 07:23
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Originally Posted by jmmoric View Post

Didn't Soviet airliners stray into NATO airspace? Or were the Soviets just more anxious than we were? Or were we just better at the whole intercept and lead out again thing?
You just reminded me of this story. "East of Shetlands" may well be in the NATO airspace, nevertheless, even though proven to be a spy plane it wasn't shot down.
https://theaviationgeekclub.com/the-...flot-airliner/
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Old 18th Dec 2020, 08:22
  #653 (permalink)  
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Great story Beamr.. never heard it before ! . yes, "deviating " Russian Aeroflot aircraft were common in those days ., especially the Tu134s , who ,as we suspected and learned later , had cameras in the glass nose and radio listening devices and recorders in the hold. . I witnessed a couple above Belgium . always the same procedure, radio comms failure for a few minutes deviations, then back on track with a " sorry Nav problems " But they were not the only ones doing this in those days , the use of the Berlin corridors by French , British and US aircraft was a nice playing ground for those spy games back then ..
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Old 18th Dec 2020, 08:37
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Ilyushin IL-62 with concealed camera ports? Great story!
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Old 18th Dec 2020, 19:12
  #655 (permalink)  
 
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Was this in international airspace, east of the Shetlands? If so, legal under international law.
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Old 19th Dec 2020, 06:14
  #656 (permalink)  
 
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the story doesn't tell, but it might be either way.
However, the soviets had a long history of shooting down airliners in international airspace, starting from 40's: OH-ALL "Kaleva". It was nowhere near soviet airspace but on a scheduled flight between two independent countries when shot downby two soviet planes from close range. And it did not have any spying equipment. Nor did AY915, a DC10 which was fired at with a missile.

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Old 19th Dec 2020, 13:39
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Well I am sorry but the aircraft intruding into the super power’s airspace 40 years ago, ignoring comms and interceptor commands and then trying to leave is no longer considered as civil flight with consequences attached. As we know from KAL b707 accident nothing bad would happen if they follow the interceptor - pax were sent home in one piece just a few days after and even the Captain was pardoned quickly. Taking your chances against the air defence may end up badly, be it now or 40 years ago

Last edited by CargoOne; 19th Dec 2020 at 15:48.
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Old 5th Jan 2021, 16:32
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In the nature of a question, mostly (with a reason for considering it relevant, also...)

Does a particular item in the news reports today provide a basis for further considering how plausible, or rather how quite suspicious, Iranian explanations about missile crew mistakes really are? Not going to summarize the specific steps or subroutines involved in the specific missile launches or in operation of the air defense battery in general, given these parts of the Iranian storyline are found easily and readily enough.

But in the news today, Saudi Arabia and Qatar have reached enough of a framework agreement so that the Kingdom has reopened its borders which of course includes airspace, to Qatar, and hence to overflights by Qatar Airways. As the WSJ news article notes, the airline had been overflying Iran during the closure, which had generated additional airspace usage fees for Iran. A factor which should have been of obvious relevance already (although your friendly neighborhood SLF/atty poster just plain missed). So the question is:

In the situation during the closure of Saudi airspace to Qatar Airways, with the airline instead overflying Iran and doing so to the financial benefit of Iran, does it not register as plausible that the Iranian missile crews would have been more diligent and more vigilant, more closely overseen and supervised, more fear of supreme authority put into them, so that any possible mistake would not tragically down a Qatar flight? It's not the revenue here that is the hook, it's the fact that the overflights would appear to have been a reason for significantly greater oversight and vigilance, not less and not even just business as usual.

The reason I'm kicking this out at this moment is not that I got an "F" on my most recent Iranian geography quiz. Instead, it's that the Canadian government's diplomatic efforts in the aftermath of this tragedy are being taken quite seriously by the participants not only from Canada but from the other Member States as well...yes, I realize, what really can be done? and there have been shoot-downs before, et et etcetera. The point is, my sources say that despite those "so what?" factors the diplomats and government officials involved are taking the current initiative seriously. And that as a result, having a proper frame of reference around the ".....oh, the missile crews, they tried to operate this complicated gear properly but were fallible" storyline is important. Isn't it important?
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