Iraq and ISIS Discussion

Kaldak

Wheelchair Kamikaze
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The coasts will, for the majority of the populous, gladly embrace the interconnected world. At least for now. Most of the rest of the country won't. Unfortunately, the unpleasantness takes awhile to be fully felt. When it is felt, it is too late to easily change course.
 

AWP

Formerly Known as Freefalling
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I've sat on the fence about this post, but here it goes. RE: airspace deconfliction and speaking to the Russians and Turks.

So, we have this thing called an ADLT, Air Defense Liaison Team. This article can explain it better than I can.
Allies in the Gulf

The Russians, Syrians, and Turks have some insane air defenses. Obviously, we know when their search radars are active within seconds of turning those on. These defenses range from fixed, long-range sites to very mobile sites and this is before we get into MANPADS and helicopter shredders like the ZSU-23. You absolutely, 100% want that ADLT to coordinate your strike package. If the Russians et. al. see you coming at them with a mass of fixed and rotary-winged aircraft, they aren't allowing that to happen. Our 5th gen aircraft don't fly in stealth mode and we've done this for so long everyone knows what they look like on radar PLUS they are squawking Mode 3 IFF which means other nations know what is heading their way.

Would you let a strike package into your country, especially one with helos which means you're bringing in troops?

The coordination that took place to make this happen bordered on stupid. A necessary stupid. The president making a courtesy call is a bit of overkill, but sound on a diplomatic level. Obama didn't need to do that, but Trump did. PK's air defenses and posture don't resemble, not for a second, what exists over Syria. Think what you will, but Russian and Turkish aircraft in the region aren't scoff worthy and coupled with the ADA presence means their defense in depth is formidable. It isn't just about "we're coming in to do a job" it is also "don't fly within this bubble" and "please vector civilian traffic a certain distance away from point x." A bunch of officers including GO's watched the raid and were ready to let F-22's and F-35's do some wet work.

I handled Comms for the C2 side of airspace deconfliction. The coordination required for this raid was massive and the pressure on us maintainers to keep the network running (computers, radios, infrastructure, etc.) was..."sporty." I can only imagine what the operators (the Air Force refers to their C2 guys as such and "controllers" is reserved for ATC guys. These are two different worlds.) shouldered.

95% of you "got it" before this post, maybe this helps a few lurkers.
 

lindy

SOF Support
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You, @AWP , are “magic”. ;-)

Separately,..but what about Trump’s failed Syria policies leading to the indisputable resurgence of ISIS and the Kurdish genocide?
 

AWP

Formerly Known as Freefalling
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I'm glad you got off the fence. With all the different players in that region it amazes me--even with all the electronic safeguards--that there haven't been more incidents.
It speaks to the professionalism of our coalition partners (Our Ops floor has US, Brits, Aussies, Canadians, Puerto Ricans, Marines, and Danes), modern communications, and flat out hard work. A little luck has helped too. Once the Syrians had a Su-24 tracking toward some of our ground forces. We had a pair of Raptors slide in behind the guy and VID that his wings were slick. Still, can't have that near our folks so the -22's buzzed the guy and he promptly pulled a 180 and headed west. Back when clearing Mosul was a thing, the Russians fired crusie missiles or flew Tu-160's through our "stack" over the city. We're good neighbors, so we gave them escorts to show them around the neighborhood. Suddenly, the Soviets learned how to use a telephone...

We've had moments, but you set up a good DCA (Defensive Counter Air) orbit and send some -22's or -15E's their way. Eventually they grew tired of that game and found other things to do.

I can't get into numbers, but the amount of radar feeds and radios we connect to is pretty neat. It's a corny statement, but very true that "no comm, no bomb" and our limitations are other nations and our own staff process at CENTCOM and below. All of these years at war and the AF and Army still bicker over space at a FOB to support some radios or radar...Our TACPs are wonderful, but also worthless if we can't find gas for a CAS platform due to a lack of comms. Going to procedural control because of no radar coverage drives an operator's workload through the roof and injects risk into an already rough environment.

At the end of the day, one thing all air forces have in common, or should IMO, is that they exist to shoot down planes and drop bombs. As I've said over and over here at work: "We don't make cornflakes, we make widows and orphans." That's what a modern air force does and our coalition is very good at not making cornflakes.
 
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GOTWA

Half Faceless Man
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@AWP appreciate your knowledge and experience on a topic like this. Really puts things into perspective even though all we hear on the news is uncontrollable chaos.

I'm new to the SOF world (Afghanistan), but I think I'm picking things up rather quickly. Its interesting how this place operates compared to the conventional side. It's not without its hiccups, but things sure do move a lot more smoothly, and with a lot more commonsense.
 
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