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Iran Air A300 Shot Down  
User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 6
Posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 4863 times:

In 1992 an Iran Air A300 was shot down incidentally by the US navy during the gulf war. The aircraft was enroute Dubai- Bandar Abbas and had nothing to do with the war. My question: did the relatives of the victims ever receive compensation for this horrible fault?
Was there ever any official excuse for it?



70 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineAb.400 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3926 times:

If it was an "Incident".

User currently offlineBrissie_lions From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3906 times:


The U.S. government to this day refuses to pay any type of compensation to the Iranian families involved in that disaster. They did however *fork out* $2.9 million to non-Iranian relatives of passengers on the flight, without acknowledging liability, of course.

The cover up of that flight is absolutely disgusting, and the sooner the US gov't does something about it the better. There are 100% in the wrong in this case, and they know it...the attempted cover-up is one to make one wonder just how open governments are these days.

The US was not at war with Iran, and so should be held accountable for IR655.

Some time ago, a Supreme Court through out an appeal for compensation on the grounds that during the tanker war that a state of war was in effect, and that the US Government and contractors can not be held responsible for the actions of soldiers in wartime.

I urge you to look at the following website, which has a complete history on the flight, the shooting down, the cover-up and the legal stuff. It makes for interesting reading.


User currently offlineBarnaby From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3874 times:

Actually it was shot down on July 3, 1988 and had nothing to do with the Persian Gulf War.

The United States was involved in the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) in which the Iranians attempted to block Iraqi oil from reaching the market by mining the waters of the Persian gulf, preventing tankers from being able to safely conduct their business. This led to open conflict between the US and Iranian navy which was winding down at the time of the Iran Air disaster.

The reasons for the disaster are long and laborious but can be summed up as follows.

1) UAE was reluctant to allow US Air Force AWACS radar reconassaince to operate in its territory. As such, the radar coverage of the area in question was very much reduced.

2) Because of #1 above, Aegis reconnaisance ships with much more limited radar range were given responsibility for patrolling the airspace in that sector.

3) Iranian airforce jets had made numerous unsuccessful attacks against US Navy frigates and carriers in the days and weeks leading up to the incident.

4) When the A300 appeared on the radar screens, its transponder indicated it was an Airbus aircraft. But an inexperienced senior officer decided it was an F-14. The aircraft was hailed on radio more than 20 times and told to turn back. Thinking an attack on the ship imminent, the launching of missles was order.

1. What was a civilian aircraft doing overflying a battle group of US Warships during a war?

2. Why didn't the captain respond to US radio hails?

Many mysterious details remain to be cleared up about the incident. Perhaps the Iranian government decided that 200 Martyrs would not be such a terrible price to pay so that the world would turn against the United States. Maybe the aircraft was empty. Who knows? But it could happen to any country....just as the Korean Air 747 was shot down by Soviet Air Force in 1983 under similar circumstances.

Shit happens out there people. Accidents happen too.

User currently offlineDeltaAir From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1094 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3865 times:

The USS Vincennes was operating under a lot of pressure at the time. The US Navy does not blame the captain due to the fact that the aircraft was on a direct course towards the ship and was not responding to any calls the USS Vincennes made. If you were in the posisition of the Captain onboard the USS Vincennes you would probably have done the same thing he had. In the US Navy, the Captain is responsible for his/her crew and ship. In the event that any hostile force is even suspected he/she is authorized to act (within reason).

This was a devistating event in history. The radar contacts should have never been confused. My feelings go out the the familes and crew of the Iran Air A-300. Let nothing like this ever happen again.

User currently offlineBarnaby From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3864 times:

Nice website---did you write those provocative half-truths yourself or is this a friend of yours?

Its very easy to make hindsight judgements ("The model of F-14 sold to Iran was not capable of launching surface missles) but the captain and crew felt themselves in real danger. US Ships had been attacked by Iranian anti-ship missles repeatedly in the months prior to the attack.

User currently offlineBarnaby From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3841 times:

Where is the "cover up" you are talking about?

And the US was very much at war with Iran during 1988---unless of course you think destroying over half of Iran's sizeable navy was a gesture of friendship.

User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3834 times:

Please dont start a war. I was only asking if they ever excused this accident officially and of they ever paid compensation? I know that it is a horrible fault and that these lives can never be brought back!



User currently offlineAb.400 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3821 times:

Barnaby, time for some sunblocker.

User currently offlineTeahan From Ireland, joined Nov 1999, 5446 posts, RR: 58
Reply 9, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3813 times:

Here is my opinion:

I am Swiss and neutral. Both parties are too blame. THE US for shooting down an Airbus when they knew it was one and the pilot of the plane for not answering the radio calls and overflying that aerea.

Jeremiah Teahan

Goodbye SR-LX MD-11 / 6th of March 1991 to the 31st of October 2004
User currently offlineBrissie_lions From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3824 times:

Good to see that the White House media releases are believable in at least one person's eyes.

You said that it was also put down to an *inexperienced senior officer*. One would think that a senior officer would have the necessary experience/training to avert this type of situation.

One could also ask the following questions?

1. What was the Vincennes doing inside Iranian territorial waters at the time, in clear violation of international law?

2. Why couldn't the equipment on board one of the most expensive ships in the US Navy fleet understand the difference between Mode 1/2 and Mode 3 IFF?

3. To get from Bandar Abbas to Dubai, one has to fly over the Gulf, and hence, maybe, over warships.

As you put it *shit happens*, but when *shit does happen*, one has to be held accountable for it. Just as we are seeing with the upcoming PA103 trial. If the two Libyans who are on-trial are guilty, they will be held accountable. Isn't this the moral thing?

Again, check that website I gave to you in the first post to see a fuller picture of the story.


User currently offlinePronto From Canada, joined Mar 2000, 328 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3812 times:

This did not happen in 1992. It was in July 1988. The eight year war between Iran and Iraq was winding down at this time, and U.S. ships were patroling the Gulf, protecting oil tankers of neighbouring countries. Of course relations between Iran and the U.S. were still sour, with the revolution and the hostage taking ordeal less than ten years old. Regardless of this, civilian aircraft are to be sending out signals identifying themselves(which it wasn't), and the aircraft chose to ignore several warnings from the Vincennes. This aircraft was not flying in normal civil air corridors and presented a danger to the ship, which at the time was being engaged by Iranian gunboats.

User currently offlineBrissie_lions From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3808 times:

You may be surprised to learn that most of the information on that site is from the Washington Post and Newsweek. Isn't the Washington Post the same paper that caught out Nixon in the 70s? And you are trying to tell me that there is no cover up.

C'mon, is your name Barnaby or Captain Rogers?.

The question is, should the US government pay compensation? I believe it should.

User currently offlineVirginA340 From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 15 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 3804 times:

I agree with Jeremiah Teahan; both parties are at fault. The pilot for not responding to repeated radio warnings on cilivian aircraft and military channels to identify itself and to head the opposite direction. The USS Vincennes for shooting down the A300 when the crew knew it was an Airbus aircraft. The person or persons monatering the radar was inexperienced. His/ her mistake costed the lives of over 200 people. I wonder how certain members of the crew and certain US officials sleep at night knowing that the have the blood of over 200 innocent men, women and children on their hands. If this happened to be a US airliner shot down by an Iranian ship. We would demand for justice no matter what the cost ... even if we went to war (US got involved in WW 1 after a German U-boat torpedoed and sunk the R.M.S Lusitania killing nearly 200 Americans). It's about time that these families were told the truth instead of encountering more government red tape and heartless and incompetant bearocracy.

User currently offlineNavion From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1033 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 3786 times:

It's like all tragedies. There is an unbroken chain of mistakes and errors culminating in a terrible result. Any positive factor in the interim which could have broken the chain probably would have. History is replete with thousands of these types of incidents. I'm not sure what the point of this post is, as I doubt anyone thinks the U.S. or any other country for that matter is reckless or deliberately kills innocent civilians. I hope this post ends here.

User currently offlineAmerican_4275 From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1076 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 3783 times:

This is an interesting topic. But we're making too big a deal out of it. There are obviously a number of opinions on the subject. I also think that there is no need for criticism (there's already been enough of it on the forum). So why don't we all just leave it BE at God bless those families that lost loved ones on that flight.

God Bless,

User currently offlineAcvitale From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 922 posts, RR: 10
Reply 16, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 3776 times:

While many have valid points wasn't it found the USS Vincenes never broadcasted on 121.5 the warning but only on the UHF frequency and that the A300 was in an air corridor and the US ship was monitoring controller frequencies.

I am a US citizen and remember the incident well..There was initially a cover up.. I am appalled that it drags on to this day. Yet I also know the Iranians and Libya both took many American lives thru terrorism.. All are awful events

User currently offlineN754PR From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 3771 times:

The US government are a bunch of fakes !, they always tell countries what to do but never get their own shop in order. If the stupid idiots on the navy ship could not tell the difference between fighters and an A300 then they are 100% WRONG. The US Gov is WRONG.

Look at the Area 51 thing. When staff started saying they were getting sick (and people living down wind) they took the government to court. What was the first problem ???

The US gov refused to even confirm that Area 51 is there !!!!!, even when people had pictures of it !!

The USA, the place were even school kids have to pass through security to get to class to see if they have guns !, the place were you 6 year old shots dead a class mate because they dont like them.

The USA is not the police of the world and neither are they always correct. The US should spend more time trying to solve its own problems before trying to solve other countries problems.

The USA shot down a passenger plane full of normal everyday people on board, they should be paying big time for that.


User currently offlineRaddog2 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 3758 times:

Well, I know this topic gets peoples hackles up, but I think at the very least the government should compensate the families. What kind of a slap in the face is it to compensate only the non-Iranian families? We're always talking about how we oppose the Iranian government not the Iranian people...it's about time we put our money where our mouths are. And I think before people start getting angry about Iranian protesters burning the US flag and calling us the Great Satan, they should at least consider for a moment that the reason they're doing so might be because the US military once killed a friend, relative, acquaintance, etc. with no apology or compensation. I think now would be a great time to offer some money, as it would help thaw relations with Khatami's gov't.

User currently offlineSouthflite From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 3757 times:

To those members who've criticised the Iranian airliner's actions: what would you have done differently?

Put yourself in the cockpit of that A300 - you are operating a legitimate, scheduled civilian flight, in a recognised air corridor, following a standard flight path, listening to the ATC frequencies as you're required to ... so you happen to pick up a message from an American warship calling on a F-14 to turn back from its flightpath ... do you respond, figuring out that it's YOU they're calling?

Did that airliner have a right to be where it was, when it was?

If the US Navy was concerned with air traffic originating from Bandar Abbas, was it monitoring that airport's ATC?

Think about these questions, and then ask yourself - who bears the responsibility for this tragedy?

User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 3746 times:

What you say makes perfekt sense. So it was only the US vincennes faut. If it would have been a european or american aircraft things would have been totally different.



User currently offlineBrissie_lions From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 3743 times:

Am I correct in assuming that a civilian airliner is not required to answer calls that are put out on military bands? I remember reading this somewhere (not related to this case).

User currently offlineHmmmm... From Canada, joined May 1999, 2114 posts, RR: 5
Reply 22, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 3724 times:

We must remember, this event took place just a year after the USS Stark incident. On May 17, 1987, an IRAQI fighter flying in the hotly contested Persian Gulf area during the Iran/Iraq war, approached the US frigate and fired two missiles, in err, at the ship.
The Stark detected the aircraft but since it did not know whether it was friend or foe, Capt. Brindel decided to take no defensive action. Two exocet missiles ripped open her hull and thrity-five members of her crew were killed.

So, it was in the context of that mistake that the Iranian Airbus flew into danger a year later in the same dangerous area of the Persian Gulf. When the Airbus approached the Vincennes, again the identity of the aircraft could not be determined. When contact with the Airbus was not made, Capt. Rogers was put into a terrible decision. He could wait a little longer in the hope that it was not an Iranian fighter bearing down on them, and risk his ship and his crew on that bet, or he could take defensive action in the hope that it was. And since a captain has as his first priority, the safety of his men and his ship, not the safety of airliners, he decided he had to take action and cross his fingers that it was not a civilian plane. Capt. Rogers decided that the US Navy did not need another Stark reminder (pun intended) of what could happen if you wait it out. So he decided to err on the side of caution.

Regardless of whether contact with the Airbus could have been made had they tried other channels, the Vincennes acted in self-defence only. Those poor people on that airliner were victims of what is called the fog of war.

Should the US pay out? Perhaps. But then again, the Iranians got their revenge. Pan AM 103 is understood by the intelligence community to have been in reprisal for the accidental downing of that Airbus. Yet Pan AM 103 was no accident. There was no fog of war there. And the Iranian government hasn't paid 5 cents to the relatives of anybody on that flight.


An optimist robs himself of the joy of being pleasantly surprised
User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 6
Reply 23, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 3716 times:

I think youre confusing Lybia and Iran. The bombers of PA103 were lybians.



User currently offlineBrissie_lions From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (16 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 3709 times:


You are supposed to say, The bombers of PA103 are *allegedly* Libyans. There is overwhelming evidence that they are in fact not guilty of this bombing. Details to follow once the trial starts in early May (I don't want to be misquoted)

25 Teahan : I agree with you on those issues you brought up, but I am still neutral on the issue. But I have one more point: The USA, the coutry that kills it's o
26 Superdawg : Anyone ever ponder that there maybe was someone on the plane that the US needed to get rid of? Just a thought.
27 Barnaby : Some mostly good comments by all and this has been for the most part a worthwhile discussion. Has anyone ever considered whether or not the aircraft w
28 Brissie_lions : Why do people insist on thinking that the Iranians would send people to their deaths, just to get back at the U.S. I think it has been shown that the
29 Barnaby : Even if the Vincennes was in Iranian territorial waters, and I have yet to be convinced of that, this was still an accident and not a deliberate effor
30 Barnaby : Sorry...that last bit was meant to read like this. >>So whether the plane was within normal corridors or not, is totally irrelevant.
31 JFL : Gentlemen ! The shot down of this A-300 is terrible and I don't know about the military radar but, for what I know about civilian radar, the only info
32 Hmmmm... : Avion, while the suspects may be, or may not be, Libyan, the affair had the tacit support of Iran. The US shot down an Iranian airliner, albeit by mis
33 Avion : About the flight. The flight never left the civilian flying corridor and was not delayed. Everyone in Dubai knew that its daily civilian flight from B
34 Barnaby : >>>he bombers of PA103 are *allegedly* Libyans. There is overwhelming evidence that they are in fact not guilty of this bombing. Details to follow onc
35 Brissie_lions : Of course there were plenty of excuses, but no 100% truth.
36 Brissie_lions : What arm of the US government do you work for mate? CIA, FBI????? Are you the only person in the world who believes a word that any government says? >
37 Amir : Hi, well i don't want to get into politics, just a short note. The Iranian victims were ever compensated. I wonder what would have happened if it was
38 Barnaby : OK Brissie, I'll bite. I am not quite the US Government lapdog you seem to think I am, but I do reject the unsubstantiated blanket statements of which
39 Post contains links Brissie_lions : Well good to see that you, as am I, are open-minded and willing to hear both sides of the story. You can save me a hell of a lot of work here, and may
40 Raddog2 : The Pan Am bombing is no excuse for shooting down the Iran Air jet. It's cliche, but even assuming that the Pan Am bombing was a direct edict from the
41 VirginA340 : I agree Raddog; we have alot of politicans that can be really hypocritical. When the other countries make mistakes we can really put them down with na
42 Southflite : Wow, I can't believe some of the sycophantic postings I've seen on this thread. Talk about taking the party line, warts and all! Come on, guys ... to
43 L-188 : While everybody complains about the iranian victims not being compensated. I would like to point out that there has been a asset freeze and a trade em
44 Post contains images Barnaby : And now Muammar Gaddafi is setting the moral example for the world to follow!! Southflite, don't make me laugh. Yes there was a coverup. Yes Iran woul
45 Brissie_lions : Does the fact that the book is unavailable for sale in the US tell you something? If you want a copy of the book, I can always buy one for you down he
46 Brissie_lions : Here is another incident in which the relevant authorities never paid compensation, or in fact, apologised. This is taken from the Lockerbie incident
47 JFL : I've never heard about this Tragedy. It's simply umbelievable !!! How someone could fire at an airliner plane (the B727 is really easy to ID!), unable
48 Amir : Yes indeed it is frustrating! how many people know about the LN 727 and the Iran Air incidents, but almost all people know about the KAL and PANAM inc
49 Jtb106 : Yeah, the fact that the book is not available in the US DOES tell me something. That there isn't a publisher who thinks there is a market for it here.
50 Brissie_lions : I really have to disagree strongly with you there. If you have read the book and know the background of Lester Coleman, you will know that he was an e
51 Post contains links Brissie_lions : Amir, I have to wholeheartedly agree with you there buddy. JFL: There is one reason why you haven't heard about the LN tragedy. I take it you live in
52 Spaceman Spiff : The way I see it the U.S. Navy did the world a favor by getting rid of an Airbus.
53 Barnaby : Brissie, this is fascinating, even gripping stuff, especially with this latest LN incident which I (and I assume most Americans) had absolutely no kno
54 Mirage : "The way I see it the U.S. Navy did the world a favor by getting rid of an Airbus." Now seriously Spaceman Spiff, what are you doing in this forum? ju
55 Jtb106 : Point taken. However, I still don't believe everything I read, whether the author is someone trying to sell a book, my government, or my brother. Ther
56 JFL : I am only 26 years old, I am involved in the Aviation Safety Program with the FAA and I'll never understand any kind of reason or excuse for shooting
57 Brissie_lions : You, my boy, are an absolute drongo. I mean that. We have been having a discussion here on aspects of these incidents, which may or may not be interes
58 Navion : JFL, I'm not sure I understand your post. The shooting down of the Iran Air A300 certainly was not intentional in that the Navy would not have fired h
59 Post contains images Teahan : ):People like you are a disgrace to this forum. I have never heard such a biased and stereotypical statement in my whole life ! GET A LIFE KID Jeremia
60 Southflite : I agree that Spaceman Spiff's statement was very callous - it was obviously intentionally so, just to try and raise other contributors' hackles and ge
61 VirginA340 : SpacemanSpiff; I can see that you did not heed my advice on refraining from the Airbus related posts. I hope the creator of this site bans you from th
62 Barnaby : C'mon guys...it was only a joke and a pretty funny one at that. I'm sure Spiff recognizes the seriousness of the current discussion. If you don't keep
63 Mirage : Barnaby you belong to Spiff's club right? How strong you two look....I'm sooo afraid, shame on you, the Airbus was not empty.
64 Barnaby : Please remind me---what exactly is "Spiff's club"? >>The Airbus was not empty
65 Raddog2 : I don't want to get flamed, but I think Spaceman Spiff probably intended it to be a joke not realizing it was in seriously poor taste and offensive. S
66 Southflite : >> If you have nothing to contribute, zip those lips. That's a fine piece of advice - why don't you follow it?
67 Ab.400 : You are pretty often responding to postings in the forum. I wonder where you have all this time if you are a pilot, your airline doesn´t seem to be s
68 AerLingus A330 : I have just read some of these absurd posts about a very tragic and yet very contentious issue. I personally will not jump into this silly fray with m
69 Southflite : Please read the following extract from the DETAILED RULES of this forum: If you have a problem with another user in the forum or if you dislike some o
70 Administrator : Right. This doesn't seem to be going anywhere.
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