CX747
Topic Author
Posts: 5748
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:54 am

U.S. Aircraft Attack Iraqi Radar Sites Again.

Wed Aug 15, 2001 12:51 am

By Tabassum Zakaria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Western planes conducted an air strike on Tuesday on a surface-to-air missile site in southern Iraq to knock out a radar that provides information for missile firing, the Pentagon said.

"All aircraft exited the area safely," Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said.

The strike, the second in less than a week, was conducted at about 8:15 a.m. EDT at an-Nasiriyah, about 170 miles southeast of Baghdad, he said.

U.S. Air Force F-16 fighter jets used precision-guided munitions in the strike. Such weapons include missiles and bombs that are guided to precise aiming points using satellites. A damage assessment of the target was underway.

"This radar was an element of the Iraqi air defense that has been directly contributing to the effectiveness of their integrated air defense systems," Whitman said.

U.S. Central Command said the strike was conducted "in response to recent Iraqi hostile threats against coalition aircraft monitoring the southern no-fly zone."

Since the 1991 Gulf War, U.S. and British planes have regularly patrolled "no-fly" zones in southern and northern Iraq. The Pentagon has said the Iraqi military has become more aggressive recently in trying to shoot down western planes.

On Friday, dozens of U.S. and British warplanes struck three air defense sites in southern Iraq with bombs and missiles. Earlier last week, allied planes struck Iraqi targets in the northern zone.

"If Iraq were to cease its threatening actions, coalition strikes would cease as well," a statement from U.S. Central Command said.

The coalition raids have targeted Baghdad's increasingly sophisticated anti-aircraft network.

While no western warplanes have been shot down by Iraq, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said recently Iraq was improving its air defenses "both quantitatively and qualitatively" with fiber-optic communications cabling.

A fiber-optic air defense control center is located near an-Numaniyah, southeast of Baghdad, while the radar and anti-aircraft missile bases are farther southeast, near an-Nasiriyah, U.S. defense officials have said.

Pentagon officials said last month the Iraqi military came close to hitting a high-altitude U.S. U-2 spy plane with a missile on July 24.

Baghdad has denied firing at the plane, saying U.S. officials wanted a pretext for a military attack on Iraq.

U.S. and British warplanes have patrolled no-fly zones over northern and southern Iraq since the Gulf War, when Iraqi troops were ousted from Kuwait by a U.S.-led coalition.

Iraq was banned from using all aircraft in the zones set up by Western powers to protect minority Kurds and Shiites.

"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: ChairmanRobbo, Devilfish, INFINITI329 and 2 guests

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos