Tag Archives: War on ISIS

Russian Tu-95 “Bear” Bombers Hit Daesh Terrorist Camps With KH-101 Cruise Missiles In Long Range Strike

Cruise Missile Attack from Russia Avenges Lieutenant General Valery Asapov Death.

Russian long-range Tupolev Tu-95 “Bear” bombers launched cruise missile strikes against targets said to be controlled by Daesh Takfiri terrorists in the Syrian provinces of Deir al-Zour and Idlib on Sept. 26, 2017.

The strikes were largely in retaliation for the death of a high-level Russian commander in the region, Lieutenant General Valery Asapov. Asapov was most recently reported as commander of the 5th Red Banner Army. He was posted to Syria on special assignment as a senior military adviser. Lieutenant General Asapov died in a mortar attack by Daesh terrorists during operations outside Dayr al-Zawr over the weekend. Asapov’s death happened approximately 450 kilometers (280 miles) northeast of Damascus, the Syrian capital. Some Russian internet blogs have partially blamed U.S. interference, including intelligence leaks in the region, for Lieutenant General Asapov’s death.

The bombers that conducted the long-range cruise missile strikes were Russian Air Force Tu-95MS “Bear H” or “MSM” version aircraft likely belonging to the 184th Guards Heavy Bomber Regiment, named the “Sevastopol” regiment, after the historic siege of Sevastopol from 1941-42. The aircraft are the most modern examples of the aging Tupolev turboprop strategic bomber that first flew in 1952. The TU-95MSM first saw combat over Syria in November, 2016.

The Russian Tu-95 is roughly analogous to the U.S. B-52 Stratofortress eight engine all turbojet strategic bomber that made its first flight in the same year. By contrast, the Tu-95 uses four unique turboprop powerplants turning large, counter-rotating propellers. The Russians settled on turboprops with the Tupolev trademark contra-rotating propellers to improve un-refueled range while maintaining relatively high speed. Benefits of the Tupolev/Kuznetsov powered turboprops include relatively high speed and extremely long-range. The TU-95 has an unrefueled range of 9,400 miles compared the U.S. B-52 range of “only” 8,800 miles, roughly 7% less range than the “Bear”. Speeds between the U.S. B-52, B-2 Spirit stealth bomber and decidedly non-stealthy Tu-95 are similar, with the B-52 having a top speed of about 644 MPH, the B-2 Spirit at about 628 MPH and the Russian TU-95 at a relatively competitive 575 MPH even with its turboprop engines compared to the jet-powered B-52 and B-2. Top speed difference between the Russian Tu-95 and the American B-2 is only about 8%.

The Tu-95MS bombers used the new Russian KH-101 cruise missile in the attacks on Deir al-Zour and Idlib on Tuesday.

The KH-101 is a recently developed long range cruise missile roughly analogous to the U.S. Tomahawk family of cruise missiles. Eight KH-101 cruise missiles can be carried by a Tu-95 bomber, although video from the recent Syrian strike only showed four of the missiles on the Tu-95 MS aircraft.

The new Russian KH-101 stealth, long-range cruise missile was used in the strike. (Photo: Russian Air Force)

The KH-101 cruise missile has an effective combat range of 2,790-3,000 miles (about 4,500+ kilometers) and can carry a variety of different warheads depending on the target to be struck. This newest of the Russian cruise missiles is reported to have low-observable (“stealth”) characteristics and is capable of adjusting its targeting while in flight to the assigned target. It’s accuracy is reported as “within 10 meters”. Russian media reports showed the missiles striking large buildings as well as encampments in the Syrian desert.

The Russian Bear/KH101 strikes on Deir al-Zour and Idlib were escorted by a number of some version of Sukhoi Su-27 fighter aircraft as the strike package flew over Iran and Iraq on the way to the missile launch point.

Top image credit: Russia Air Force

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.