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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 12 Sep 2011, 18:26 
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pngwerume wrote:
Recce UAVs are spreading. Uganda was confirmed to be getting some last week. Kenya is too. Sudan, Ethiopia and Angola have some. If you think about it, the West have had them for decades. We are still looking at tactical short range systems while the West is talking of UAVs flying across the globe. The West has armed systems already operational. So are the Chinese including AAM armed ones.

My thinking is UAVs are a better investment as a force multiplier for battlefield recce and loitering. I guess the challenging might be real-time linking of the information to the field commanders.

I really think it is high time we catch up … … well, not catch up … … but move one step ahead.
http://www.saairforce.co.za/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=769&start=45

Speaking of Uganda acquiring UAVs in addition to 6 Su-30MK2 which cost a total of $740 million (Shs1.8 trillion). An Enemy of Zimbabwe during the war Uganda had a couple of Mig 21s at the time and reports say AFZ deployed Hawks armed with AIM 9 sidewinders to deal with the Fishbeds though there is no record of engagement.
In addition to the crazy F16 talk , Surely its time to not only catch up but time to move several steps ahead. :cry:

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 12 Sep 2011, 21:36 
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Minutes of a meeting between the Ugandans and the Russians indicate 8 Su-30s.

I don't think Zim deployed the Hawks to fight the UPDF MiG-21s. More for ground attack (which they did very well), and when opportunities arose, shoot down helicopters and transport. The Ugandan MiG-21s were refurbished and possibly upgraded by Israel, so could have been to the MiG-21-2000 standard or somewhere there. I don't expect our Hawks would have been tasked to fight that.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 08:21 
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Tom Cooper's description under an illustration of a AFZ hawk
Quote:
AFZ Hawk T.Mk.60 with the typical CAP / escort load: two Chinese Made PL-7 short range IR guided AAMs and an ADEN 30 mm gun pod on the centerline. hawks flew these missions in response to the reports about Ugandans deploying their MiG-21s to Congo, but also in a vain attempt to intercept transport aircraft and helicopters which were delivering supplies to the opposing forces


It could be true that Hawks were deployed to kill Fishbeds remember
Quote:
By 1998 only six or seven F-7s remained fully mission-capable, and the No.5 Squadron had approximately a dozen of qualified pilots. Besides, at the time the war in Congo was to break out Zimbabwe was in the middle of negotiations with China for an additional batch of 12 F-7s, which never materialized.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 10:35 
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Thanks Sky!

I have read this article before but I missed the detail of Hawks deployed against MiG-21s. That is very interesting – and looks like I now have homework to do for a few days. Assuming this statement to be true, it says the AFZ guys knew something we don’t know (and of course they would, :D :D :D ) because on paper, I would have not expected them to send Hawks. … … on second thought though, the whole idea the Brits developed the “A”s was for secondary air defence role and they had the Soviets in mind. They expected them to be vectored to targets since they lacked radar or to be lead by Tornadoes. It therefore suggests they have the capability/potential to fight MiGs. It would also support the idea that Uganda’s MiG-21s were just refurbished and not upgraded by IAIs.

Also an F-7 operator, the AFZ would intimately know the limitations of the “MiG-21 types”. i.e. go in to exploit the weakness of the enemy and not challenge his strengths.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 14:59 
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Even if AFZ knew the limitations of the Mig 21 it doesnt make any sense to send Bae Hawks for a fight against Fishbeds. A mig21 is way lethal against a trainer such as a Hawk. a fishbed is MACH 2 with nearly double the engine power. very very agile. During the vietnam war Fishbeds destroyed more than 130 US aircraft including Multi roles such as F4 Phantoms.Mig 21 has at least a 20km radar against Fighters. F7s must have been in really bad shape at the start of the war.
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=914

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 15:51 
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skyhawk77 wrote:
. F7s must have been in really bad shape at the start of the war.


Sky that is unsubstantiated and a “throw away” comment = one of those comments people make and believe because there is so much negative press against Zim … … expect nobody to say anything good about Zim.

Zim went into DRC before sanctions. Their exploits defending Kinshasa and through out their stint there are acknowledged if one tries to be unbiased. (We all have a bias I know). It could be that the squadron was not at full strength due to attrition but the fact that a few planes were out of service or lost in accidents is separate and has little or no bearing on the serviceability of the remaining planes. There is nothing to suggest the AFZ sent anything less than “fully mission capable” F-7s to DRC.

If indeed the AFZ was hunting for Ugandan MiGs with Hawks, then be assured they knew what they were doing.

If BAe and the RAF task the Hawk with secondary air defence/defending air fields again a Soviets attack (read MiGs) the knew what they were doing.

http://www.aeroflight.co.uk/tag/bae-systems
Quote:
The Hawk gained an additional role from January 1983, when modification of 88 RAF aircraft to carry Sidewinder missiles commenced. The resulting T.Mk 1A variant was intended for emergency use as a point-defence fighter, supporting Phantoms and Tornados in the UK Defence Region.


This article below mentions a point I was trying to avoid: that of experience/training/expertise as this is questionable and may not have a measure, i.e. AFZ might have known the MiG-21 to be a better dog fighter than the Hawk but they were confident of their pilots mastery of the Hawks. Here the UK would have tasked instructors to use the Hawks, i.e. make up for any possible machine short comings with having a superior operator.


http://www.bcar.org.uk/hawk.html
Quote:
From 1983 to 1986, some Hawks were equipped as the short-range interceptor aircraft for point defence. 88 T.1s were modified to carry two AIM-9L Sidewinder air-to-air missiles in addition to the centerline gun pod carrying a single 30 mm ADEN cannon. These aircraft were designated T.1A. In the event of war, they would have worked in collaboration with Tornado F.3 aircraft, which would use their Foxhunter search radars to vector the radar-less Hawks against enemy targets. Such missions would have been flown by instructor pilots. Conversions were completed in 1986. With the fall of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, RAF Hawks are no longer tasked with this role.

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Last edited by pngwerume on 14 Sep 2011, 00:17, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 17:06 
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i have heard some stories that say the British government was against the war (Zimbabwe's involvement) to the point that they gave the rebels or mercenaries information on how to deal with the Hawk. And you say the British might have advised Zimbabwe to use HAWKS for Air defence. Interesting.

The RAF was prepared to use Hawks backed by Tornados , what was Zimbabwe going to use ?

If the trick failed of using radar of another fighter plane it was going to result in close air combat and the result were going to be catastrophic.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 13 Sep 2011, 18:08 
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I am sure the ability to fire Sidewinders would have been a selling point for the Hawks to Zim from the start. It was not as if the UK “advised” Zimbabwe after we got involved in the DRC. I know the Mk60As are the ones for air defence, which were the second lot Zim bought. I am not sure if the original Mk60s could not fire Sidewinders. I however doubt that because #604 was displayed at Farnborough in 1982 with Sidewinders.

I assume Zimbabwe would have used ground based radar on home turf. I also assume there was no radar or inadequate radar coverage in DRC so the “system” was not working as per design, hence they did not find their prey.

It was meant to be close air combat with IR. The Tornadoes were just to help the Hawks get into the arena/locate the fight for the “furball”.

The Hawks were used for a UFO interception near Bulawayo in the mid-80s. [I need to look in my external drive for the photos of the dead aliens that they shot down. They remains are kept in a secret hangar at Thornhill, :D :D ] So using them for air interception would have been part of their role in the AFZ from the start. What I had not thought through or realised is their deployment against Uganda’s MiG-21s which I would have considered/assumed a lot more superior for air-to-air roles. I am now guessing that Uganda had their MiGs more for A2G against Koy.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 14 Sep 2011, 09:32 
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so if we have dead UFOs at Thornhill that's enough reason for United States of America to invade oil- less Zimbabwe :lol:

Image

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 14 Sep 2011, 13:37 
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Wow!....very interesting pictures....thanks for posting Skyhawk77. If I may ask...which spare parts in particular is Zim failing to get in order to have the Hawk-60s airborne once more?


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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 14 Sep 2011, 20:01 
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I read the AGIC material on AFZ in DRC about three ago. I think I need to read again. Look like the have updated the article. I am sure the last time I read they were saying the Hawks were armed with Sidewinder Bs. Could be he was assuming since they were wired for Sidewinders at delivery. The fact they were flying with PL-7s suggests AFZ made modifications as I don't think the BAe wired Hawks for Chinese missiles.

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 15 Sep 2011, 08:49 
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The Air Force of Zimbabwe is disposing of its remaining Hawker Hunter Fighters and English Electric Canberra bombers. It has advertised the sale by tender of 12 Hunters and five Canberras plus various accessories. The tender closes on July 30. The aircraft have been in storage for some time , and the air force clearly does not wish to spend money on old aircraft at a time when it is short of funding. The hunters are mainly the FGA-90 variant ,with at least one F-80 and one T-81 seat trainer. Tender details are available from Air Force HQ at 25 Borrowdale Road , Harare. The fax number is Zimbabwe 04 704395 0r 708 318. The main operational strength of Zimbabwe's air force lies in its 11 F-7s its Five Hawk MK 60s and its 14 Reims Cessna 337 Lynx COIN/reconnaissance aircraft. About Half of the F-7s are believed to be in service but all the hawks are grounded for a lack of spares.


World Airnews Magazine
Volume 31,N0.4
June 2003
page 27

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 15 Sep 2011, 11:08 
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I believe they did not sell in the end. Lebanon is/was bringing its Hunter back to life 2 years ago – could be/have been a potential customer.

It would be interesting to get info on how many F-7s were upgraded around 2004/2005.

And yes, Tom Cooper & Co. updated their DRC article last year. It is a good read. Here is what I got from his quick read, He does maintain Uganda had its Fishbeds upgraded at IAI.

He also asserts one AFZ fast jet loss and unconfirmed rumours of a second!

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 15 Sep 2011, 12:43 
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i think there are more than 1 loss.

Enroute to DRC to participate in a fly past at the funeral of Laurent Kabila an F7 pilot became disoriented (don't know what that means) and ejected. :oops:

An F7 was lost when it tried to land on a runway blocked by another F7 which had crashed earlier. :oops: the pilot ejected. And that was in DRC

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 Post subject: Re: DRC war 1998
PostPosted: 15 Sep 2011, 13:54 
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I bad I was not clear – I meant shot down or lost to the “rebels”.

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