Video: Syrian L-39 combat trainer (probably hit by rebel's anti-aircraft fire) crashes into the ground

Once again brought to my attention by the forum, this video shows a Syrian Arab Air Force L-39 crashing into the ground at the end of a right hand turn at low altitude on Aug. 23.

Although it’s hard to determine the real cause of the crash, it looks like the pilot got hit during the turn. Indeed, there are no appearent signs of failure nor clear signs of pilot error/micalculation: the plane seems to fly into the ground without the pilot trying any recovery action. Most probably he was unconscious.

On Aug. 27 a Mil Mi-8 was shot down over Damascus.

About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. Is this the first known instance of an L-39 being shot down? Or is it just the first video?

  2. For me looks like its a remote controlled model. After hit the ground, no fireball and a very little smoke. If a real airplane hit the ground, we know how it looks like.

    This is a real L-39 crash:

    and this is a remote controlled L-39 model:

  3. Why do all these videos from Syria have to have the “dirka dirka muhamed jihad ” music?

  4. @vo101sanyo

    Not aircraft mishaps end in a fireball. Just last year at the Reno Air Races a modified P-51 “Gallaping Ghost” crashed into a row of spectators and no post-impact fire was observed as the airplane impacted the ground at an estimated speed of 500mph. I could bore you with all the aviation safety investigation training I have had on the how and why planes do not always explode but will not.

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