U.S. Search Teams Find Buried Iraqi Jets

by hawkaw 57 Replies latest social current

  • hawkaw

    Interesting story seeing as part of the surrender in Gulf War 1, Iraq was not suppose to have these and it is interesting as to just how far the regime was willing to hide stuff.


    http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=540&e=23&u=/ap/20030801/ap_on_re_mi_ea/iraq_air_force_2 U.S. Search Teams Find Buried Iraqi Jets

    Fri Aug 1, 2:32 AM ET

    By JOHN J. LUMPKIN, Associated Press Writer

    WASHINGTON - Some of Iraqi's missing air force has turned up down below.

    Search teams, some hunting for Iraq ( news - web sites)'s alleged weapons of mass destruction, found dozens of fighter jets from Iraq's air force buried beneath the sands, U.S. officials say.

    At least one Cold War-era MiG-25 interceptor was found when searchers saw the tops of its twin tail fins poking up from the sands, said one Pentagon ( news - web sites) official familiar with the hunt. He said search teams have found several MiG-25s and Su-25 ground attack jets buried at al-Taqqadum air field west of Baghdad.

    Iraq's air squadrons were a no-show during the war, and U.S. military officials supposed their pilots stayed grounded because they believed they were overmatched by American and British air power.

    Various officials differed in opinion as to whether the buried aircraft could ever fly again. Many of the planes were buried intact with minimal efforts to protect them from the sand.

    Rep. Porter Goss, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said the discovery pointed to how far Iraqi forces went to conceal their activities. The Florida Republican was briefed on the discovery during his recent trip to Iraq.

    "Our guys have found 30-something brand new aircraft buried in the sand to deny us access to them," Goss said. "These are craft we didn't know about."

    He said the planes were not considered weapons of mass destruction for which coalition troops have been searching for months, "but they are weapons (Iraq) tried to hide."

    Prewar intelligence estimates from earlier this year said Saddam Hussein ( news - web sites )'s regime had about 300 combat aircraft, all of them survivors of the Gulf War ( news - web sites ). Most were aging Soviet-era MiGs, Sukhois and older French Mirage fighters. The best are MiG-29 Fulcrums, one of the most advanced fighters produced in the Soviet era.

    Allied warplanes bombed several planes on the ground, and U.S. Air Force officials say no Iraqi planes were detected flying a combat mission during the war.

    Australian troops, who on April 16 captured the Al Asad Airfield, 112 miles northwest of Baghdad, found scores of fighter aircraft, mostly Soviet-era MiGs but also three advanced MiG-25 Foxbats, the fastest combat aircraft today. Helicopters, radar systems and millions of pounds of explosives also were found.

    The MiGs had escaped detection during the coalition bombing campaign. Some were buried or hidden under trees or covered with camouflage sheets. Aircraft destroyed in prior wars were littered across the airfield to make it more difficult for bombers to choose their targets.

  • expatbrit

    Why am I not surprised this thread didn't get replies?


  • kgfreeperson

    Well, I'm trying to think of what they could have been thinking. Burying brand new planes in the sand?

  • George W Bush
    George W Bush

    Yes, amazing that none of my favorite people have replied.

    But I do find it interesting that Saddam felt that burying fighter jets would benefit him. I mean having them in the sand was just as effective as if we had drilled them with a cruise missile.

  • Bendrr

    Maybe Saddam Hussein had an idea and just didn't have enough time to work on it.

    He was trying to develop a "desert submarine". Saw the movie "Tremors" a few times too many and knew his fighter planes weren't doing him much good in the air so he decided to try a different tactic.


    p.s. (ok, that was one of the worst jokes I've made since I've been here. Simon, feel free to discipline me over that one.

    Simon comes marching in wearing a British military uniform saying in his best Graham Chapman voice "Stop that! You there! Stop that right now! It's too silly!" To which I respond, "Yes you're right, it's quite silly and not at all funny. <sigh> I never wanted to do this. I always wanted to be a lumberjack!".......)

  • DannyBear


    I wouldn't be so quick to malign yourself there Mike..........I was watching the 'Crock Hunter' the other nite, he was in Africa or somewhere in the 'outback' and he stopped dead in his tracks,bent down and pulled right out of the sand, a sand burrowing snake that literally swam through the dirt!


  • Bendrr
    I wouldn't be so quick to malign yourself there Mike

    Self-deprecating humor is one of my specialties Danny. If you can't laugh at yourself and get others to join in, what's the point of having a sense of humor at all? So laugh with me. Remember one thing. When I said I was going to be a comedian everyone laughed. But no one's laughing now are they?!

    I love watching the programs about snakes. You gotta wonder sometimes, what else is out there in those vast expanses of desert "swimming" through the sand.

    And no, I'm not trying to make any subtle references to WMD's with that. Think of how many other things that may be found in the desert sands of Iraq once all this is over with.


  • DannyBear


    **** If you can't laugh at yourself and get others to join in, what's the point of having a sense of humor at all?****

    Iam a believer. Couldn't make it through a day without 'laughing at myself'........I do believe it is the one personality trait that can save your life.

    Can't imagine anyone contemplating suicide, who has the ability to see the comedy or our own bad selves.

    So I will laugh WITH ya fella!



  • teejay

    >>>> Why am I not surprised this thread didn't get replies? -- Expat

    I don't know what people are supposed to say. Was it supposed to be a shock for us to learn that Iraq had an air force? We already knew that. What was Sadaam supposed to do? Leave his planes out in the desert so that they'd be used for target practice?

  • patio34

    Thanks Teejay for summing up my thoughts on this. My first reaction was "so?" or "and?"


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