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Study Says Iraq Insurgents Use Advanced Weapons (SA-16)
Reuters ^ | Jan 17, 2004 | Reuters

Posted on 01/18/2004 2:21:08 AM PST by XHogPilot

Jan 17, 8:14 PM (ET)

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Iraqi guerrillas are using increasingly sophisticated weapons and tactics to attack U.S. aircraft, according to a classified Army study on the downing of helicopters in Iraq, The New York Times reported in Sunday editions. Citing senior Army officials in Iraq and the Gulf who were familiar with the study, the newspaper reported that at least one advanced missile was used by insurgents.

Rebels have used rocket-propelled grenades and heat-seeking surface-to-air missiles, the latter which require a degree of skill, in the attacks. Scores of U.S. servicemen have died in recent months in a rash of helicopter downings in Iraq.

The study found that no type of helicopter is more protected against, or more vulnerable to attacks.

But it recommended changes to help pilots evade ground fire, which the officials did not elaborate on. In the past, the Times said, changes have included flying more missions at night, with lights turned off to avoid detection.

According to Army officials, it was concern about the recent helicopter downings that prompted Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, the senior commander in Iraq, to move beyond a standard review after such crashes and order in December a comprehensive study of all downings.

Army officials told the paper that one troubling finding is that on at least one occasion insurgents used an SA-16 shoulder-fired missile, which is harder to thwart than the SA-7 missiles and rocket-propelled grenades used in other attacks.

Officials did not specify which incident or incidents might have involved an SA-16.

The team that conducted the review was headed by Col. Stephen Dwyer, a brigade commander at the Army Aviation Center at Ft. Rucker, Alabama, the Times said. It included about a dozen forensic and weapons experts, crash analysts and helicopter specialists, and spent about four weeks in Iraq visiting the crash sites, taking soil samples and talking to aviators.

"This is a case of our Army coming through quickly with the right expertise at the right place," the Times quoted Maj.-Gen. David Petraeus, commander of the 101st Airborne Division as saying.

TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: balkans; balkansalqaeda; bosnia; campaignfinance; guerrillas; igla; insurgents; iraq; redeye; sa14; sa16; sa7; saddam; sam; stinger; twa800; weapons
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The use of the highly capable SA-16 SAM in Iraq is unprecedented and telling. The SA-16 never had the uncontrolled proliferation of the SA-7 or even SA-14. Until now, it was thought to only be in the government arsenals of mostly Soviet Union states and Yugoslavia.

A Oct 2003 report by GIS/Defense & Foreign Affairs Daily, Bosnian Terrorist Assets Moving to Iraq, indicated a "mujahedin training facility in Bosnia was now part of a process to send fighters into Iraq".
Further in the article, "It would also reflect that the al-Qaida and Iranian-backed Islamist infrastructure in the Balkans, built up since the beginning of the 1990s, was now being used as an integral part of the war against US forces in Iraq. As well, there were indications that the Bosnian-based Islamists had also been used to support military operations against the anti-terrorist Coalition in Afghanistan.
NATO Stabilization Force (SFOR) officials were apparently aware of the linkage, and, in the second half of September 2003, raided the Muslim military barracks in Tuzla, seizing all of the SA-7 Strela and SA-16 Igla man-portable surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) in the armory."

SA-16 Surface to Air Missile

1 posted on 01/18/2004 2:21:10 AM PST by XHogPilot
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To: XHogPilot
2 posted on 01/18/2004 2:26:00 AM PST by risk
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To: XHogPilot
These would be the same Bosnian Muslims that U.S. forces moved to save from ethnic cleansing.

Next time someone wants to ethnically cleanse some muslims, let's not get too excited about jumping up and sending our boys to defend them....

3 posted on 01/18/2004 2:26:22 AM PST by Gerasimov (Oh calm down ... it was a joke. **mostly**)
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To: XHogPilot
Something tells me we are gonna have to have a rat killin in the Balkans.
4 posted on 01/18/2004 2:31:02 AM PST by eastforker (The color of justice is green,just ask Johny Cochran!)
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To: XHogPilot
The proliferation of more sophisticated SAMs coming from the Balkans only exacerbates the need to take down these Mid-East dictatorships. Sooner or later they will procure WMDs on the black market.
5 posted on 01/18/2004 3:11:53 AM PST by CruisinAround
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6 posted on 01/18/2004 3:14:20 AM PST by getgoing
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To: Hoplite
Oh, here's one for your scrapbook bub.
7 posted on 01/18/2004 3:15:11 AM PST by Lion in Winter
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To: Gerasimov
weasly clark just loves those guys!
8 posted on 01/18/2004 3:16:31 AM PST by Lion in Winter
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To: knighthawk; dennisw; Sabertooth; RadioAstronomer; Libertina; Thinkin' Gal
Bad news with a capital B and that stands for Bosnian Terrorists...I wish I could say this wasn't inevitable...If you watch the EXCELLENT Foreign Legion based sniper movie, "The Savior" with Dennis Quaid you get to see the red headbands of the islamists sneaking around in Bosnia...I'm creeped out, now!
9 posted on 01/18/2004 4:05:45 AM PST by sleavelessinseattle (Militant Islam is a political movement NOT a religious one...What does it take to wake up the media?)
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To: Boot Hill

Another one.
10 posted on 01/18/2004 4:58:58 AM PST by Carry_Okie (There are people in power who are truly gutless.)
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To: risk
And everyone wonders why France,Germany and Russia would not join in the war. They probably supplied this weapons and didnt want it to get out plus they didnt want their troops going up against these weapons.
Yes Mr. and Mrs. Democrat we need all this support from the UN when it is the UN that is trying to overthrow America with your help.
If you want a dictatorship and the UN to run America vote DEMOCRAT!
11 posted on 01/18/2004 5:06:13 AM PST by gunnedah
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To: XHogPilot
The FMLN of El Salvador used a few SA-16 missiles during it's war against the Salvadorian government back in the '80s and early '90s.
12 posted on 01/18/2004 6:41:01 AM PST by Jacob Kell
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To: Jacob Kell
"The FMLN of El Salvador used a few SA-16 missiles during it's war against the Salvadorian government back in the '80s and early '90s."

Are you sure it was SA-16s and not SA-7s or -14s? SA-16s began manufacture in the late 80's and were reportedly exclusive to the USSR for several years.

13 posted on 01/18/2004 6:49:15 AM PST by XHogPilot
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To: XHogPilot
Who's selling this stuff and to whom? It is Iraqi's who's buying them or someone else? Obviously if 29 trucks with weapons can brazonly cross over from Iran, who knows what it getting across. Wake up Bush, nothing is stopping the same from crossing our open borders either.
14 posted on 01/18/2004 7:01:12 AM PST by mtbopfuyn
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To: Gerasimov
I whole heartedly agree with you. Why was Clinton so eager to help forces that have shown nothing but contempt and religious intolerance for others? I think it is because he was a pompous arse, and he and his "intellectual" anti-American buddies thought they knew better than what history taught. Plus, he had the Lewinsky scandal to distract the populace from.
15 posted on 01/18/2004 7:05:50 AM PST by FreeAtlanta
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To: sleavelessinseattle
Moring Sleaveless! Looks like about the only ones who don't take war seriously are the liberals in America and Europe... Our enemies seem quite a bit less "conflicted." Funny, unlike Dan Rather and the mainstream media - i bet they can even tell you which "side" they are on...
16 posted on 01/18/2004 10:07:36 AM PST by Libertina (CPAC - Conservative Political Action Conference - Jan 22-24, DC
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To: Lion in Winter
So let me get this straight - Al Qaeda, who has supposedly been co-located with our forces in Bosnia since 1996 and Kosovo and Albania since 1999, is sending fighters and equipment from the Balkans, where attacking US forces would be easy for them, to Iraq, where they are as fish out of water due to cultural and linguistic differences with the locals.

Notwithstanding the stupidity of these allegations, NATO has addressed them recently, and the lack of any attacks against US forces in Bosnia or Kosovo gives the lie to this BS - if you want to see what happens when Al Qaeda is in the neighborhood of US forces, Afghanistan provides a perfect example - and compared to the Balkans it is night and day.

I note that Al Qaeda related individuals have been apprehended in Bosnia, Algerians mostly, and that they were handed over by the Bosnian government to SFOR and are now currently in Gitmo.

In short, the Balkan connection to Al Qaeda is more hype than substance, and isn't pushed in the service of American interests.

17 posted on 01/18/2004 10:37:56 AM PST by Hoplite
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To: Hoplite
From :

NATO says no evidence of militants in Bosnia

15 Jan 2004 17:36:34 GMT

SARAJEVO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - NATO's new secretary-general denied on Thursday recent media reports that al Qaeda and other Islamic militant groups were present in Bosnia.

"We have no firm evidence that international terrorists are operating, training or recruiting in Bosnia-Herzegovina," Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said during his first trip since taking the position last week...

OK. But where are they getting the SA-16s from?

18 posted on 01/18/2004 10:56:52 AM PST by Screaming_Gerbil (Let's Roll...)
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To: Screaming_Gerbil
From the Russians?

The Iraqis were using SA-16's against us in 1991:

The SA-16 Iglas is thought to have shot down as many as 12 of the 29 coalition aircraft lost in the 1991 Persian Gulf war.
Aviation Week and Space Technology, Dec 9, 2002

The story here isn't the disinformation directed against Bosnia itself, but the fact that the disinformation is being pushed on FR with such frequency and that it is being swallowed by an uncritical audience.

None of it serves any American interest.

19 posted on 01/18/2004 11:44:10 AM PST by Hoplite
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Comment #20 Removed by Moderator

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