Russia Claims "We Know" Who Was Behind Attack On Russian Airbase In Syria!
Russia has claimed that a "provocateur", likely referring to a state actor, was behind the drone attack on two airbases the country has in Syria.
Russian President Vladimir Putin slammed those behind the massive drone attack on Russia's two Syrian bases which took place on January 6, saying in front of a large Russian media conference Thursday, "There were some provocateurs, but they were not Turks. We know who they are, who paid who for this provocation and what the actual sum was." Meanwhile the Turkish newspaper Daily Sabah reports that Putin has privately informed Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of which "provocateur" was behind a drone attack.
Earlier this week we reported that the Russian military in Syria thwarted the highly coordinated attack on Khmeimim air base and the Russian Naval facility in the city of Tartus, intercepting 13 heavily armed UAVs launched by terrorists. And underreported in international media was also a prior New Year's Eve attack carried out by a small squad of insurgents armed with mortars who were able to kill two Russian servicemen while damaging up to seven aircraft at Khmeimim Airbase, which constituted the single largest loss of Russian military hardware throughout the Syria campaign.
Though both attacks would appear to be merely the work of Islamist rebel factions occupying nearby Idlib, multiple extraordinary factors led the Russian Ministry of Defense to immediately state that the perpetrators must have had outside state sponsorship. First there was - as the Russian Ministry of Defense mentioned in an early media statement - "strange coincidences" surrounding the terrorist attack: these included a US spy plane spotted in the area, namely a US Navy’s Boeing P-8 Poseidon reconnaissance aircraft on patrol between the Khmeimim airbase and Tartus naval base in Syria during the time of the attack.
Secondly, the airbase lies deep within Syrian regime territory in what is among the most secure areas in all of Syria, which also underscores the need for advanced satellite and navigational coordination from a state actors. The Russian military claims the drones came from the village of Muwazarra in Idlib, around 50 miles away, which makes Ahrar Al Sham or Hay’at Tahrir Al Sham the immediate culprit. Both groups, though blacklisted as terror organizations by the Pentagon, have received direct and indirect assistance by the CIA and allied intelligence services at various points over the course of the war, especially during the 2015 campaign to wrest Idlib city from the control of the Syrian government.
Third, the Russian military in its examination of the recovered drones found high tech components well beyond what initially appeared to be rebel-made improvised devices manufactured locally. Putin went so far as to say the drones and explosives were purposefully made to appear primitive and homemade in order to conceal the advanced technology they were outfitted with. On Thursday he said, "As for these attacks, they were undoubtedly prepared well. We know when and where these unmanned vehicles were handed over [to the attackers], and how many of them there were. These aerial vehicles were disguised - I would like to stress that - as homemade. But it is obvious that some high-tech equipment was used."
Russia has yet to reveal the identity of those responsible, but has strongly hinted at the United States or a regional US ally, which elicited a Pentagon response this week with a spokesperson saying the suggestion is "without any basis in fact and is utterly irresponsible."
Russia Forced To Defend Syrian Base Against Unusual "Massive" Attack!
Russia has allegedly defended its Syrian military bases from a massive drone attack.
Russian security forces of the Khmeimim air base and Russian Naval CSS point in the city of Tartus ,thwarted a terrorist attack “with massive application of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) through the night of 5th – 6th January 2018,” according to the Russian Ministry of Defence. The attack came just two days after an Islamic faction operating in the area launched a barrage of mortar rounds at the airbase severely damaging two planes.
As darkness fell, Russia air defense systems detected “13 unidentified small-size air targets at a significant distance” swarming towards the bases. Ten assault drones were fast approaching the Khmeimim air base, and another three were advancing towards the naval base. All attack drones had payloads of what appears to be mortar rounds.
As the drones approached both bases, Russia unleashed the Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile and Electronic Warfare Units. Seven UAVs were destroyed by the Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile system, and another six UAVs were hacked with radio equipment. Three of the UAVs landed in a safe area just outside the base, but the others exploded on various landing attempts. The Defense Ministry notes that the defense systems eliminated all threats with no casualties or damages.
It was the “first time that terrorists massively used unmanned combat aerial vehicles of an aircraft type that were launched from a distance of more than 50 kilometers, and operated using GPS satellite navigation coordinates,” the ministry said in a statement.
The Defense Ministry said experts are analyzing the aircraft’s flight components and bomb ordnances for clues. Flight data from the GPS indicates the UAVs could have been launched at a range of 100 kilometers (62 miles). If so, this would be the first long-range drone attack by militants in the Syrian War.
Currently, the Russian military experts are analyzing the construction, technical filling and improvised explosives of the captured UAVs. Having decoded the data recorded on the UAVs, the specialists found out the launch site. It was the first time when terrorists applied a massed drone aircraft attack launched at a range of more than 50 km using modern GPS guidance system. Technical examination of the drones showed that such attacks could have been made by terrorists at a distance of about 100 kilometers.
Further, the Defense Ministry says the extremists may have been aided by a “technologically advanced state,” as Russian specialist are now attempting to determine where the flight systems of the drones originated from.
Read more: (Link: www.zerohedge.com)
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SEE VIDEO: U.S. Fighter Jets Intercept Russian Fighters!
The U.S. Air Force has released new video showing F-15 jets deployed to Lithuania intercepting Russian Su-30 "Flanker" fighter jets in the Baltic region.
From The Aviationist:
The 493rd Expeditionary Fighter Squadron deployed from RAF Lakenheath have had some close encounters with the Russian fighters near the Baltics.
The U.S. Air Force will complete its fifth rotation as the lead nation for the NATO Baltic Air Policing mission on Jan. 8, 2018. On Jan. 5, videos documenting their efforts during their four-month deployment were publicly released.
In particular, the videos capture previously unreleased footage of RAF Lakenheath F-15s conducting “safe and standard intercepts of Russian Federation aircraft as part of the NATO peacetime air policing mission.”
Along with footage showing the U.S. Air Force F-15 pilots scramble during an exercise during the Baltic Regional Training Event at Šiauliai Air Base, Lithuania, back in April 2014, the video compilation shows two encounters with the Russian Navy Su-30 Flankers.
The first one occurred on Nov. 23, and was initiated because the Russian aircraft did not broadcast the appropriate codes required by air traffic control and had no flight plan on file. The second one shows two Russian Navy Su-30s intercepted on Dec. 13, 2017. The second intercept was initiated for the same reasons: the Russian aircraft did not broadcast the appropriate codes required by air traffic control and had no flight plan on file.
The video compilation shows tw encounter on November 23 and another on December 13. According to descriptions posted by the military, both incidents involved two Russian fighters in international airspace near the Baltics. In both encounters, the F-15s were scrambled because the Russians did not broadcast the codes required by air traffic control and did not file a flight plan, the Air Force said.
Read more: (Link: theaviationist.com)
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BREAKING: At Least Seven Russian Aircraft Have Been Destroyed In Syria!
A report from a Russian news source has stated that a mortar attack in Syria has destroyed at least seven Russian aircraft, including two copies of their most high-tech fighter jet, the Su-35 "Super Flanker".
From The War Zone:
According Russian news outlet Kommersant and repeated by Reuters, at least seven aircraft were destroyed during an mortar attack by "radical islamists" on the country's "Khmeimim" air base outpost located south of the port city of Latakia in Syria. If the report proves accurate, it would signify the largest single loss of military equipment since Russia dove into the Syrian conflict kinetically in late 2015.
In addition to the aviation-related losses, the report says at least ten people were injured on the base during the onslaught. It also details the aircraft involved, including at least four Su-24 Fencer attack jets, two Su-35 multi-role fighters, and an AN-72 tactical transport.
The potential loss of so many aircraft due to a mortar attack is not implausible. Since Russia arrived at the base, tactical aircraft were grouped very close together, along with nearby munitions. Even as the base expanded sizably, and aprons were extended (the aircraft originally parked on the parallel runway), aircraft have remained in close proximity to each other with no revetments of any kind installed. As such, a single mortar could cause a train reaction, destroying multiple aircraft lined up in a small area.
An ammo depot was also struck according to the two unnamed diplomatic sources the article refers to.
The incident could be somewhat embarrassing for President Putin, who recently visited the base to triumphantly declare victory against extremists and anti-Assad elements within the country. Putin's primary message was accompanied by the order to at least partially pull out of Syria militarily, although similar statements have been made in the past only to see more Russian military resources pour into the troubled country.
Read more: (Link: www.thedrive.com)