Tag Archives: Russian Air Force

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.

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

H/T to @obretix for contributing to this post

Latest imagery shows 28 Russian aircraft (12 Su-24s, 12 Su-25s and 4 Su-30s) on the ground at airbase in Syria

Imagery taken on Sept. 21 shows 28 aircraft on the ground at Latakia airbase.

A satellite image has finally unveiled the whole Russian Air Force contingent made of 28 combat planes deployed to Syria: taken on Sept. 21, the photograph shows 4 Su-30SMs, 12 Su-25SMs and 12 Su-24s lined up, in the open air, along runway 17L at al-Assad International Airport, near Latakia, in western Syria.

Whether the aircraft will remain at Latakia (where no hardened shelters have been built yet) or will move somewhere else is unclear. For the moment, they are expected to launch the first sorties from Latakia quite soon.

Based on the couple of videos emerged so far, it seems quite likely that the 28 aircraft deployed to Syria in four-ship formations led by Il-76s, Il-78s and (maybe) An-124 airlifters, in radio silence and shadowing the accompanying cargo/tanker planes to remain “stealth” to radars along the route.

Top Image: Alan Wilson/Wiki. Imagery: Copyright CNES 2015, Distribution Airbus DS

 

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

 

New video may show Russian Il-78 tanker escorted by Su-24 Fencer jets over Syria today

Provided this video is true and taken in Syria today, it may suggest more Russian aircraft are being deployed to Latakia airfield.

The following video was allegedly filmed in Homs on Sept. 20.

Although the quality of the footage is quite scarce, the video seems to show four Su-24 Fencer attack planes trailing an Il-78 tanker aircraft (or an Il-76 cargo plane) probably heading towards al-Assad IAP, south of Latakia, where four Russian Su-30SM multirole planes are already based.

If genuine (it must remembered that some pictures exposed earlier this month proved to be fake), the clip may prove that Russia is deploying more combat planes to Syria to sustain the air war against ISIS (even though we can’t rule out other possibilities, for instance, that those depicted in the video are Syrian Su-24s escorting a Russian cargo/tanker – we have just to wait until a new satellite image emerges)

The Su-24 Fencer is a supersonic, all-weather attack aircraft developed in the Soviet Union and serving, among the others, with the Syrian, Iranian and Libyan Air Force.  It’s twin-engined two-seater plane with a variable geometry wing, designed to perform ultra low-level strike missions.

Although it was born as an interdiction aircraft, ELINT (Electronic Intelligence) and Recce (Reconnaissance) variants of the Su-24 (respectively designated Su-24MP and MR) were produced and are currently in service with the Russian armed forces (Russian Air Force and Russian Navy).

In April 2014, a Russian Su-24MR flew within 1,000 yards of the USS Donald Cook, the U.S. Navy destroyer operating in the Black Sea, a maneuver U.S. authorities considered “provocative and inconsistent with international agreements.”

H/T to Guido Olimpio for the heads-up

 

Satellite image shows four Russian Su-30SM parked in the open air at airfield in Syria

Four Russian Flanker derivative have arrived at Latakia airport.

Satellite images prove Russian combat planes have eventually deployed to Syria.

The deployment, anticipated by an air bridge from Russia that involved several An-124 Condor airlifter flights (that we were able to track thanks to their Mode-S transponders) saw the aircraft arrive at al-Assad International Airport, near Latakia, the main Syrian port city, on Sept. 18.

As the satellite imagery shows, the aircraft were parked next to the threshold of runway 17L, on the northern side of the airport: this is quite interesting as the airbase has no hardened shelters and the aircraft are in the open air, exposing them to satellites and spyplanes, and making them a possible target to attacks from outside the airfield.

The arrival of the Russian Air Force Navy Su-30s and the official confirmation by the Pentagon, brought speculations that Russians may already be operating in Syria to an end: according to the U.S. defense officials, so far, four Su-30s, two Mi-24 gunship helicopters and two Mi-17 Hip utility choppers have deployed to Latakia.

The Su-30SM is a multirole derivative of the Su-27 Flanker. It’s a special variant of the thrust-vectoring Su-30MKI and MKM produced by the Irkut Corporation for the Russian Air Force (that is slated to operate 60 jets of this type by 2016).

It’s a 4+ Generation twin-engine, two seat supermaneuverable multi-role aircraft equipped with improved avionics, the Bars-R radar and a wide-angle HUD (Head Up Display).

Image credit: Wiki (Top), AllSource Analysis @AllSourceA