Tag Archives: Free Libya Air Force

Watch this video of a Libyan Mig-23 performing an insanely low flyby

The lowest and fastest flyby by a Libyan Mig-23 Flogger

We have already posted a cool shot showing FLAF (Free Libya Air Force) Mig-23 Flogger jets fly fast at ultra-low altitude on photographers at an airbase in Libya.

Here is the video filmed by a nearby cameraman.

Seven feet off the ground or more? Whatever, it’s a really a fast and low passage.

As already reported, the Libyan Air Force is currently believed to operate two MiG-23MLs (6472 based at Benina and 6132 based at al-Watiya) involved in the war of attrition against Libya Dawn forces.

H/T @Marguer_d for the heads up

 

Cool photograph of a head-on ultra-low level flying Mig-23 Flogger

Libyan Mig-23 Flogger performs insanely low flyby.

Some videos showing FLAF (Free Libya Air Force) Mig-23 Flogger jets have emerged recently: filmed from at an unknown airbase and posted on the official FB page of the Libyan Air Force they show the Soviet-era jets thundering at ultra-low altitude.

In this post you can find another image that has surfaced on the social network, reportedly released by the FLAF showing one of the flybys from a quite privileged standpoint.

According to the always very well informed Oryx Blog, the Libyan Air Force currently has two MiG-23MLs operational: 6472 based at Benina and 6132 based at al-Watiya. The two aircraft support the war of attrition against Libya Dawn forces that also operate one remaining Mig-23ML (the other one crashed after attacking the airstrip of al-Zintan on Mar. 23, 2015).

Image credit: FLAF

 

Video shows Libyan Mig-21 Fishbed jet crash into downtown Tobruk

Free Libya Air Force Mig-21 crashed into city blocks at Tobruk, in eastern Libya.

On Sept. 2, a Mig-21 belonging to the Free Libya Air Force crashed into Tobruk killing the pilot and at least a small boy on the ground.

The entire scene was filmed from a rooftop in Tobruk: the aircraft seems to be initially nose-diving, then the pilot pulls up again and the aircraft overflies the cameraman in what seems to be a climb, just before it dives again and crashes between buildings causing a huge explosion.

Needless to say the reasons of the crash are still unknown even if according to some news reports, sources pointed towards the mechanical failure.

According to RT, the pilot has been identified as Rafa Al-Farani and the he crashed in his Mig-21bis while performing in a memorial flypast for another pilot, Ibrahim Al-Manifi, who was also killed in a plane crash few days ago.

This seems to explain the reason why someone was filming the plane from a rooftop at the time of the crash.

First images of Mig-21s in Free Libya Air Force markings

Update Apr. 21, 2012 10.15 GMT

The following Reuters images, taken on the runway at Tammahint, 15 km (9 miles) from the southern Libyan city of Sabha, on Apr. 3, 2012, are the first ones showing Libyan Mig-21s in Free Libya Air Force markings.

Image credit: Reuters

Although it is extremely difficult to determine because of the low quality of the video, what seems to be a Mig-21 was filmed overflying Sabha region on Mar. 29, 2012, during the recent unrest, in what could have been the first action of the new Libyan Air Force (or Free Libya Air Force) since the end of NATO’s Operation Unified Protector on Nov. 1, 2011.

Another video, filmed in June 2011, when the No-Fly Zone was enforced over Libya by NATO and no Libya aircraft was supposed to fly, shows a Mig-21 taxiing for take off from a Libyan airbase.

On a side note: a stored LARAF Mig-25 was photographed on Nov. 1, 2011, at Al Jufrah airbase. I’ve often seen stored/unserviceable aircraft through satellite imagery, this is one of the few available from ground level.

Image credit: Getty Images

Free Libya's new airport: a mountain highway

Few days ago I published an article after seeing a picture that showed two single seat Mig-21bis and one double seat Mig-21UM flying over Benina airbase at the end of June. The image not only showed three of the four Mig-21s that were reported to have defected on Mar.17, but raised also some questions about the No-Fly Zone.

Someone wondered if preventing the Free Libya Air Force fighters from flying would have any sense if we consider that NATO and its coalition partners are (more or less….) there to help them. What I’ve explained them, is that the problem is strictly tied to the use of common procedures and to the prior coordination required to engage a densely populated airspace, as the Libyan NFZ, with fast jets: unless they know Transit Corridors, radio frequencies, transponder/IFF codes, etc., and are properly deconflicted, instead of being useful, FLAF plane could be extremely dangerous for other coalition planes. That’s why the NFZ applied to both pro-Gaddafi and rebel planes as the interception of a FLAF Mig-23 on Apr. 9 shows.

After discussing about the NFZ with Guido Olimpio, Corriere della Sera’s special correspondent from Washington DC, he sent me the following Reuters images that show an Air Libya BAe 146 used to link Benghazi with Rhebat, in the Nafusa region, a new airfield opened in the remote Western Mountain stronghold south of Tripoli. The “runway” is quite narrow and only small transport planes, capable of taxing from unprepared aprons, can operate from it.

Since it is impossible to operate those flights without NATO’s approval, the photos, taken on Jul. 12, 2011, explain the reason why the Mig-21s were flying over Benina on Jun. 27: a limited rebel flight activity must have been granted to the rebels (probably in the form of a transit corridor between Benina and Rhebat).

The most intriguing, and less likely/almost impossible theory, is that the Mig-21s are used to provide some kind of escort to the Air Libya BAe146 during the first part of its flight to Rhebat.

Air Libya is a privately owned company which operated charter flights in support of oil field operations and some charter services from Benina airport. (Photo: Reuters)