Tag Archives: War on ISIS

All you need to know about the Russian Intervention in Syria in one stunning Infographic

Here’s the new version of the infographic about Russia’s air war in Syria.

At the end of October we posted the first version of this infographic about the Russian Intervention in Syria, prepared by Louis Martin-Vézian of CIGeography. Many things have happened since then: the Russian Air Force has carried out raids using its Strike Bomber Force directly from mainland Russia; a Su-24M Fencer was shot down by a Turkish Air Force F-16 after an alleged violation of the Turkish airspace; the Moskva missile cruiser has started operating off Syria, and an S-400 battery has been installed at Latakia.

Here’s the updated version of the infographic prepared for Offiziere.ch. Please note that it does not include the first appearance of the Kilo-class Rostov-on-Don submarine that has launched cruise missile(s) against ground targets in Syria from the Mediterranean Sea on Dec. 8.

RussianInSyria_v2b

Many thanks to CIGeography (and please note they sell USN infographics now, at this link).

 

Cool shot of a B-1 bomber departing the tanker like a boss during air strike on ISIS

This is how you depart the tanker like a boss!

Taken on Jul. 23, during a mission in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, this cool shot shows a U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer (“Bone” for the pilots community), depart after refueling from a USAF KC-135 Stratotanker from the 340th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron.

The bomber belongs to the 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron deployed to Al Udeid, Qatar from Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota.

The actual location where the picture was taken has not been disclosed but most tanker tracks are located over Iraq.

The B-1 have taken part in the air strikes on IS since the beginning of the air campaign: according to a story published by the AFP news agency earlier this year, in the previous 6 months, the U.S. Air Force Lancers had accounted for 18 percent of all the strike missions against the ISIS and for 43 percent of the total tonnage of munitions dropped in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan.

Image credit: U.S. Air Force

 

U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle jet supports PSYOPS in Syria, drops leaflets over Islamic State insurgents

A U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle has delivered leaflets over ISIS insurgents in Syria.

On Mar. 16, a U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle fighter jet deployed in the Gulf region has conducted an unusual mission: it has dropped some 60,000 leaflets over Raqqa region, the ISIS stronghold in Syria.

The leaflet depicts a gruesome drawing, showing 7 men being lined up for a meat grinder (labelled “Daesh”) by a “Daesh Recruiting Office” (Daesh is the Arabic acronym for ISIS).

The leaflets were released by means of a PDU-5B leaflet canister.

The purpose of the leaflet is to support PSYOPS (Psychological Operations) in Syria. The message of the leaflet is clear: those recruited by ISIS will find themselves in a meat grinder.

Leaflet Daesh

Image credit: U.S. DoD

During 2011 Air War in Libya, U.S. Air Force EC-130s broadcast radio messages to the Libyan military, to persuade them to return to their families before it was too late, whereas Italian C-130J aircraft dropped leaflets over Tripoli to counter Gaddafi’s regime propaganda in Libya’s capital city.

Air drop of leaflets in support of Information Operations have been conducted by the U.S. Army above Helmand province, Afghanistan, using U.S. Marine Corps MV-22B Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft to deliver information to areas of Helmand province unreachable by conventional communication.

Leaflets have been also air dropped by Syrian Arab Air Force Mil Mi-8 helicopters over Aleppo in August 2012 to urge rebels to surrender to the Syrian Army.

Israeli A-4 dropped leaflets over Gaza in the past as well.

 

Video of B-1 bombers night and day departures from Al Udeid airbase in Qatar

A B-1 launch is always an impressive sight.

The following footage shows B-1 Lancer bombers with the 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron launch from Al Udeid airbase, in Qatar, to pound ISIS targets in Iraq and Syria.

The “Bones” (as the B-1s are nicknamed within the pilots community), have taken part in the air strikes on IS positions since the beginning of the air campaign.

The heavy bombers have been involved in carpet bombings not seen since the 2003 war in Iraq: according to a recent story published by the AFP news agency, the B-1s had flown 18 percent of all the strike missions against the Islamic State and accounted for 43 percent of the total tonnage of munitions dropped in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan over the last 6-month period.

B-1s were frequently spotted over Kobane, where they spent several hours dropping bombs on the extremists who were on the verge of seizing the strategic town in the north of Syria.

According to the pilots of the 9th Bomb Squadron who took part in the missions over Kobane and have recently returned to the U.S. after their deployment in Qatar, it was not uncommon for the B-1s to “go Winchester” (a radio codeword which means that the aircraft has dropped all the weapons on board) during air strikes over the Syrian border town.

 

U.S. raid to free Jordanian pilot captured by ISIS allegedly failed

Take it with a grain of salt, but it looks like a special operation to free the Jordanian pilot captured by ISIS has failed.

According to unconfirmed reports, the U.S. launched a special operations mission to recover the Jordanian Air Force pilot captured by IS militants after he was forced to abandon his F-16 over Iraq on Dec. 24, 2014.

However, the mission had to be aborted after the commando, heading towards a private house in Al-Raqqa, in the northern part of central Syria, where the Royal Jordanian Air Force pilot was hidden, lost the element of surprise and the helicopters came under heavy fire.

The news was reported by Israel News media outlet, but the source are rebels in Syria according to Turkish news report in El Andalul. So, once again, it’s difficult to determine what’s true and what’s just propaganda.

According to the rebels, two U.S. helicopters were involved in the rescue operation, supported by several combat planes.

Although it is impossible to verify such reports, we can’t rule out the possibility the U.S. launched a rescue mission in the aftermath of the capture of pilot Muaz Yossef El Kasasba to free the first coalition pilot in captivity. Indeed, the presence of (Air Force Special Operations Command) Osprey tiltrotor aircraft based in Kuwait exposed by Google Maps imagery, seems to suggest the U.S. are prepared to conduct CSAR (Combat Search And Rescue) missions in Syria and Iraq, should the need to recover a pilot arise.

If confirmed this would be the second failed raid in about six month, the first on Jul. 3, 2014, when some V-22 aircraft were used to carry Delta Force commandos to a campsite in eastern Syria where ISIS militants were believed to hold American and other hostages (that had been moved by the time the commandos attacked the site): a sign that special operations are extremely difficult and dangerous in that region.

Anyway, as a consequence of the capture of one of their pilots Jordan has suspended the Royal Jordanian Air Force operations against ISIS, Jordan newspaper “Arab al-Yaum” wrote.

H/T to @Tom_Antonov for the heads-up

Image credit: U.S. Air Force