Tag Archives: Sukhoi Su-25

Watch this interesting video of the Russian planes (with Red Star painted over) at work in Syria

Take a look at what happens inside Latakia airbase, where the Russian Air Force contingent is based.

The following exclusive video by RT brings you inside al-Assad International Airport, near Latakia, where Russian Air Force contingent, currently made of 36 combat planes, is based.

The footage is extremely interesting as it clearly shows the six Su-34 Fullback aircraft returning from the first combat sorties against Islamic State targets in Syria.

A closer look at the warplanes provides the confirmation that all the aircraft, including the Su-25s and the Su-34s, were removed the standard Russian Air Force markings and the typical Red Star: most probably the Russians don’t want their symbol to be shown off along with the wreckage of a plane in case one is shot down or crashes in Syria.

By the way, the insignia were overpainted on the Su-30SMs and the Su-24Ms as well, even if these are not clearly visible in this video; however there are screenshots in the social media that prove the same applies to Flankers and Fencers.

Su-34 tail

Su-25 Latakia

This is not the first time aircraft taking part in real operations are stripped off their national markings. UAE F-16s deployed to Jordan to take part in Operation Inherent Resolve didn’t wear the national flag while some U.S. drones deployed in sensitive areas perform their clandestine missions “unmarked.”

Here’s an interactive map of all the Russian airstrikes in Syria

The Russian contingent has launched its airstrikes in Syria. And this interactive map shows them all.

On Sept. 30, the Russian Air Force launched its first airstrikes in Syria (with controversial results).

Since then, the RuAF contingent has launched more raids, some of those conducted by the six Su-34 Fullback bombers, the most advanced tactical jets in the Russian inventory, deployed to Latakia just a couple of days before they were used for the first time in combat.

The following interactive map by @Radicalenzyme shows the location of all the known attacks so far.

As the RuAF Su-24s, Su-25s and Su-34s deliver their unguided and guided munitions on ISIS (and, according to some reports, Free Syrian Army) targets there is some concern that the lack of coordination with the US-led coalition may cause some trouble sooner or later.

Considered the number of sorties launched by the coalition (from 1 to 6, according to the daily reports by U.S. CENTCOM) the risk of mid-air between Russians and U.S. planes is still quite low. Beginning on Oct. 2, Su-30SMs have appeared next to the attacking Russian planes: they are equipped with good air-to-air radars, useful to have an idea of the “picture.”

According one of our sources with deep knowledge of Operation Inherent Resolve, who wishes to remain anonymous “with a growing presence of Sukhois across Syria and little notification, we can’t completely rule out that different packages will one day come a bit too close each other. Can you imagine what happens the first time an escort plane supporting a strike package starts tracking a Russian plane, or vice versa? The best solution is to divide the Syrian airspace into different areas and assign them to the different parties.”    

Six Russian Su-34 Fullback bomber have just arrived in Syria. And this is the route they have likely flown to get there.

The Russian military build up continues as six Su-34 Fullback attack planes arrive in Syria.

Six Sukhoi Su-34 aircraft have eventually arrived at Latakia to join the Russian contingent already there.

Images allegedly shot around the al-Assad International Airport clearly show one Russian Fullback about to land at the airbase in western Syria where 28 Russian aircraft have arrived last week.

One of the photos taken from the ground shows the six aircraft trailing what seems to be an airliner over Idlib: the larger plane is probably a Russian Air Force Tu-154.

Interestingly, a Russian Air Force Tu-154 using callsign RFF7085 could be tracked online on Flightradar24 during its flight to Latakia on Sept. 28, likely exposing the route followed by the six Su-34s trailing their accompanying Tu-154.

As the below image shows, the aircraft flew in international airspace over the Caspian Sea, to Iran and entered Syrian airspace after flying over northern Iraq: did the Su-34s have all the required diplomatic clearances to fly north of Baghdad or did they simply “sneak” into Syria by hiding under the cover of the transport plane?

Hard to say.

Last week, US officials said that the first 28 Russian combat planes hid under the radar signature on the larger transport aircraft, in an attempt to avoid detection but there are chances that the flights had all the required clearances from the Iraqi Air Traffic Control agencies and were conducted as a standard long-range ferry flight: one tanker/airlifter, using radio and transponder, supporting multiple fast jets.

Tu-154 FR24


H/T to @LuftwaffeAS and @obretix. Image credit: Flightradar24.com.

Syrian Mig-29 Fulcrums escorted the 28 Russian jets that deployed to Latakia hiding under cargo planes

According to our sources, some (if not all) the Russian Air Force formations that arrived in Syria were “greeted” by Assad’s Mig-29 Fulcrums.

A U.S. official who spoke to FoxNews has just confirmed what we reported with plenty of details yesterday: the 28 Russian Sukhoi jets hid under radar signature of cargo planes and made a stopover in Iran en route to Syria.

As already explained, the entire operation was closely monitored by the Israeli Air Force, that during and after the deployment launched several missions of G.550 Eitam CAEW (Conformal Airborne Early Warning) and G.550 Shavit ELINT (Electronic Intelligence) aircraft off Lebanon to gather intelligence on the Russians.

But, the Israeli spyplanes were not only “watching” the Sukhoi Su-30, Su-24 and Su-25 deploying to Latakia: they were most probably more interested in the Syrian Arab Air Force aircraft that were launched to greet and escort the Russians into the Syrian airspace. In fact, it seems that most if not all the formations of combat planes trailing the Il-76 cargo planes, were intercepted and escorted to Latakia by Syrian planes, including SyAAF Mig-29 Fulcrum jets, according to a source who spoke to The Aviationist under the condition of anonymity.

Meanwhile, the Russian planes deployed to Syria have reportedly flown their first local (familiarization) sorties. It’s not clear whether they were accompanied by Syrian planes but, for sure, Israeli ISR (intelligence surveillance reconnaissance) assets were pretty active all day on Sept. 24, circling between Cyprus and Lebanon as their tracks collected by ADS-B on FlightRadar24.com show. Closely monitoring the Russians? Or the Syrian Migs? Most probably, both ones.



Top image: file photo of a Serbian Mig-29 (Wikimedia); bottom screenshots credit: Flightradar24.com

H/T to @obretix for contributing to this post

New Satellite Image unveils an impressive line-up of 12 Russian Su-25 Frogfoot attack jets in Syria!

A new impressive photo unveils a large presence of Su-25 attack planes at airbase near Latakia.

A new impressive satellite image has just been released.

It shows at least 12 Su-25 Frogfoot attack planes lined-up on the secondary runway at al-Assad airbase near Latakia, the same airfield hosting the four Russian Air Force Su-30SM multirole combat planes.

It looks like the Frogfoots, the Russian aircraft most suitable for Air Interdiction and potential Close Air Support missions against ISIS have eventually arrived in Syria.

They will operate alongside the Su-24 Fencer jets spotted trailing an Il-78/76 plane over Homs on Sept. 20 (not visible in the latest satellite snapshots).

According to the most recent reports, as many as 28 Russian planes have already been deployed to Syria. The question is: where are those not exposed by satellite imagery yet.

This is not the first time the Su-25 is deployed in the region to fight IS militants: on Jul. 1, 2014 seven Frogfoot attack planes operated by the Pasdaran (informal name of the IRGC – the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution) deployed to Imam Ali Airbase, in Iraq, to join the ex-Russian Air Force Su-25s already delivered to Iraq in the air war against ISIS (Al Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant).

Image credit: AllSource Analysis | GeoNorth | Airbus