curlyheadboy
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Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Wed Feb 09, 2005 11:10 pm

If this has already been discussed please delete this thread, I tried a search but didn't get anything about it... I'm a newbie here, be patient  Smile

I read an interesting article in an aviation magazine regarding the use of fake planes, tanks and vehicles by the Serbians during the Kosovo airstrikes.
In summary: There was a unit called M 18 whose task was building decoys. They built 30 false L-18 (Mig-29) aircrafts out of junk wood, wrapped in aluminum foils to make it radar-reflecting, put simple petrol burners in the back to reproduce engine heat and simple mechanical and electronic devices to create engine noise. Over 90% of these cheap decoys were hit by NATO bombs. There are some pictures and I can tell you the work is outstanding, they look real in every particular, Aphid and Alamo AA missiles included!  Wow!
Colonel David Hackworth, commentator for "defending America" wrote:"After all the bombs, missiles and roaring reports by NATO on the damage inflicted to the Serbian Army [...] 11 Mig-29 appeared in a Kosovo base the day after peace was signed."

That's shocking news to me, I heard something about light poles used in Vietnam to resemble SAMs but never knew about this story...

Do you guys have some more on this or want to add any comment?

Marco.
If God had wanted men to fly he would have given them more money...
 
NoUFO
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Wed Feb 09, 2005 11:22 pm

Yes, I have heard of that, too. If I remember correctly, it was said they even lit coal fires inside fake tanks to simulate infrared signatures.
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MD11Engineer
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 12:05 am

This is nothing new. Back during WW2, a complete fake army of several divisions of American and British equipment was staged in fields in Kent in Britain to convince the Germans that the invasion would take place around Calais. They used inflatable tanks and trucks made of rubber, which got moved every day by a small British unit to look realistic on German aerial reconaissance pictures.On June 6, 1944, a few British planes flew a carefull pattern over the British Channel, dropping chaff (pieces of aluminium foil) to fool the German sea observation radar stations into believing that a fleet of ships were on the way to Calais.
The Russians were also experts in camouflaging their equipment and setting up fake positions to attrct the attention of the Germans.
On Iwo Jima, the Japanese carved and painted a rock to look like a Japanese tank (I´ve got a picture of it). Numerous US Marine tank crews reported having knocked out this "tank". I´ve also got pictures of fake Japanese AAA guns made up of tree trunks.

The Germans camouflaged huge parts of central Hamburg with tarpaulins and nets, to make built up areas look like rivers and lakes, while the built floating islandson the Elbe river and the Alster lake to look like housing from the air.

Jan
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SATL382G
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 12:21 am

Yes, but in WWII they didn't have EP-3s, UAV, U2s, Satellite recon, etc....
"There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as being shot at and missed" --Winston Churchill
 
Contact_tower
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 3:42 am

Well, NATO did spend lots of expensive PGMs on plywood planes and tanks during Allied Force, so it obviously works. (At least in theatres of war where weather prevents UAVs having 100% access to the battlefield at all times, like Kosovo where weather prevented most optical surveilance in long periods.)

Large plywood armies are a thing of the past, but decoys still have a place in the mix, if just to adjust the odds in favour of the defender slightly.
 
L-188
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 4:59 am

Wouldn't surpise me if it where true.

And it wouldn't bother me if it where.

The Flying Tigers did that to Japanese bombers before WWII.

Decoying has been around for a long tme.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
PPGMD
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 5:13 am

True they may have saved the air frames, but because they had to spend their time hidden they weren't useful in attacking US forces.
At worst, you screw up and die.
 
curlyheadboy
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 5:20 am

Well, actually is not the fact that these decoys were built and used that amazes me, I know this is nothing new, but the amount of success they obtained.
If I have to believe this particular article, I'm impressed by the fact that of the over 300 tanks NATO claimed to have destroyed, only 3 T55 were actually found to have been hit for real, all the others were dummies built out of old cars (Yugo 45, Zastava 128 and VW Golf), modified with wood boxes and heater tubes as a cannon. Also, the only MIGs actually destroyed were those downed in air-to-air engagements by the NATO F-15s and F-16s, all the others were fake. Of course this changes nothing about the political achievements of the campaign, but makes a lot of difference in terms of success of the airstrikes against airbases and ground forces.
I thought that the Serbian Air Force was completely annihilated, but this seems not to be true.
If God had wanted men to fly he would have given them more money...
 
L-188
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 10:30 am

Well, actually is not the fact that these decoys were built and used that amazes me, I know this is nothing new, but the amount of success they obtained.

Actually don't be so surprised.

There is a rule of thumb that if you have the wartime resources available..

When it doubt, Blow it up.

OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
L-188
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Joined: Wed Jul 07, 1999 11:27 am

RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 10:30 am

Well, actually is not the fact that these decoys were built and used that amazes me, I know this is nothing new, but the amount of success they obtained.

Actually don't be so surprised.

There is a rule of thumb that if you have the wartime resources available..

When in doubt, Blow it up.

OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
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scbriml
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Thu Feb 10, 2005 7:23 pm

So, if you're in doubt, you blow it up twice?  Big grin
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L-188
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This True?

Fri Feb 11, 2005 3:35 am

Yeah, the first shot might miss  Laugh out loud
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
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bully707
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RE: Serbians Tricked Nato With Decoys: Is This Tru

Fri Feb 11, 2005 12:11 pm

Oh yes...!!

During the campaign, before and after every mission we received a looong "intel" briefing by our military intelligence group...

Based on the information handed out to them from various sources they gave those briefings.Deception is always used to confuse the enemy...!!!

The Serbians may have tricked NATO forces all along ( and fooled us since 1992 )...but we controlled the interception and destruction of 4 Serbian MiG29 ( 2 on March 24, enroute to Nis from Batajnica and 2 on March 26, headed to shoot us down, from Batajnica until destroyed over the Bosnian border ).

I do not want to experience something similar again...it sure is a crappy feeling when you are trying to evade the attack of a supersonic MiG29 with your E-3 and you can see everything on your radar scope and pds system...

Bully

"That's the good thing about the 707...it can do anything, but read!" Joe Patroni, Airport '70

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