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Iranian F-14s Fly Again
Strategy Page ^ | January 31, 2008

Posted on 01/31/2008 8:59:55 PM PST by nuconvert

Iranian F-14s Fly Again

January 31, 2008: The U.S. has now forbidden the sale of any F-14 aircraft components. This is to prevent Iran from getting any parts with which to keep its dwindling fleet of F-14s operational. All surplus F-14s, and F-14 components, must be destroyed. The U.S. Navy has been doing that, since last year, to the retired F-14s it has.

It is believed that Iran has restored at least three of its three-decade old F-14A jets to operational status. More F-14As are to be restored this year. There is, however, the matter of credibility and capability. For decades, Iran has continually boasted of new, Iranian designed and manufactured weapons, only to have the rather more somber truth leak out later. Iran's weapons design capabilities are primitive, but the government has some excellent publicists, who always manage to grab some headlines initially, before anyone can question the basic facts behind these amazing new weapons.

For example, Iran says it began its F-14 restoration project in 2002. In that same year, Iran announced that 25, of the 79 F-14As it bought in the 1970s, were still operational. It's long been known that Iran began cannibalizing some of its F-14s, back in the 1980s, to keep others flying. During the 1980s, the F-14s were heavily used in the war with Iraq. In 1985, 25 Iranian F-14s flew over Tehran as part of a celebration. In the last year of the war, 1988, an F-14 shot down an Iraqi jet, one of over 80 knocked down by their F-14s since 1980. That much is known, because there were witnesses and other evidence.

Less well known is that Iran established a smuggling operation to obtain F-14 parts, and manufactured some itself. Russia also helped with some custom made parts and refurbishment services. But going into the 1990s, fewer and fewer Iranian F-14s were seen in the air. Whenever an F-14 took off it was big news, and difficult to hide. Word got around, and with hundreds of thousands of Iranians living in exile, the word was passed on. Thus the 2002 claim that 25 Iranian F-14s were operational, was not taken seriously. The new claims, that three are flyable, appear to be true. Some F-14s have been seen in the air, but don't expect another major, or even minor, flyover in Tehran. Iran says it is making new weapons for the F-14, without mentioning that the supply of U.S. made missiles ran out over a decade ago. The F-14 also needs new electronics, as parts for those items are much harder to get, than items needed to just get the aircraft into the air. Iran can, at great effort and expense, get a dozen or so F-14s airborne. But once flying, these ancient and jury-rigged aircraft, are more target than threat.

The new U.S. regulations ban the export of any F-14 components. Only museums and other history minded groups, can legally possess F-14 components, or inoperable versions of the aircraft.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: aviation; f14; iran; navair; tomcat
The numbers are off as far as how many F14's are operational. It's definitely more than 3
1 posted on 01/31/2008 8:59:57 PM PST by nuconvert
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To: nuconvert

Jeepers, I wonder if the combat history of the F-14 will ever be written up as it seems it is, like it or lump it, almost exclusively Iranian.


2 posted on 01/31/2008 9:04:17 PM PST by sinanju
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To: nuconvert

Basically their entire conventional warfare capacity is laughably pitiful. I read they can field only one armored division and that, conventionally speaking, their Gulf neighbors could collectively kick their butts militarily.

All their treasure has been sunk into the nuclear program.


3 posted on 01/31/2008 9:08:03 PM PST by sinanju
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To: sinanju
There is, the US shoot down of 2 Libyan fighters in 1981 and then 2 more in 1989.

There is a good synopsis of the combat history of the F-14 on Wikedpdia. Of course, you can always watch "Top Gun." "Top Gun" is a good movie on DVD since you can skip all the cheeseball Tom Cruise scenes and just watch the planes.

The 1989 Libyan shoot down is on you tube. A lot of the video looks staged though.

I understand the need to destroy all the flyable F-14's in our inventory. Nevertheless, it is sad to think we will never see a vintage one flying at an air show in the future

4 posted on 01/31/2008 10:08:31 PM PST by eeman
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To: nuconvert
I would never say such unless I could prove such.....yet I don't even "think" they have the 3.....personal opinion of course unsubstantiated etc .....
5 posted on 01/31/2008 10:14:48 PM PST by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet. )
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To: sinanju
“if the combat history of the F-14 will ever be written up as it seems it is, like it or lump it, almost exclusively Iranian.”

Didn’t F-14’s shoot down some Libyan jets in the Med.?

6 posted on 01/31/2008 11:14:47 PM PST by JSteff ( This election is about the 4 or 5 Supreme Court Justices who will retire . Vote Accordingly!)
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To: sinanju
"Iran can, at great effort and expense, get a dozen or so F-14s airborne. But once flying, these ancient and jury-rigged aircraft, are more target than threat."

Well that sounds like a truly formidable Islamo-Nazi air force!! One might think that after 28 years they could do better than this.... it's only those Chinese Silkworm missiles that we need worry about, plus those terroristic IRG patrol boats.....
7 posted on 01/31/2008 11:19:44 PM PST by Enchante (Hillary Clinton: As a little girl near Chicago I always dreamed of the NY Giants in the SuperBowl!!)
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To: magslinger

ping


8 posted on 02/01/2008 12:19:59 AM PST by Vroomfondel
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To: nuconvert; cva66snipe

*Ping* to Snipe, thought you might find this thread interesting, and that your knowledge and expertise on the subject of the F-14 would be welcomed.


9 posted on 02/01/2008 1:22:11 AM PST by mkjessup (Any SOB who calls John F'in Kerry "his dear friend" will NEVER get my vote, no way, no how.)
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To: nuconvert

Time for a “Turkey” shoot.


10 posted on 02/01/2008 2:00:56 AM PST by 60Gunner (This is an Emergency Room. You want the family package? Take your seven anchor babies to Disneyland.)
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To: sinanju
Jeepers, I wonder if the combat history of the F-14 will ever be written up as it seems it is, like it or lump it, almost exclusively Iranian.

Gee, Wally, you'd be wrong.

F-14 Combat Records

11 posted on 02/01/2008 3:53:55 AM PST by A.A. Cunningham
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To: mkjessup
*Ping* to Snipe, thought you might find this thread interesting, and that your knowledge and expertise on the subject of the F-14 would be welcomed.

I wasn't flight deck but any form of the enemy having a TOMCAT is bad news. The good news is they don't have the missile designed for it the Phoenix. If they had one function that could cause some major trouble. Another factor is if the F-14 is actually working fully functional mechanically they can out run and out maneuver our fighters. They were the best of the best Naval fighters built the Top Gun second to none.

12 posted on 02/01/2008 3:56:24 AM PST by cva66snipe (Proud Partisan Constitution Supporting Conservative to which I make no apologies for nor back down)
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To: nuconvert
"Iran can, at great effort and expense, get a dozen or so F-14s airborne. But once flying, these ancient and jury-rigged aircraft, are more target than threat."

The F-14 is a white elephant, prestige program for the Iranians. The harder they have to work at keeping part of their fleet flying, the more they have to spend.

Especially now that there's a big and growing perception that black-market F-14 parts are going to be increasingly hard to come by.

Making the Iranians p*ss money away is a good thing ;-) If anything, the US should be offically banning the sale of F-14 parts to drive the prices through the ceiling ... then selling the parts to Iran over the black market to help drain the Iranian treasury (which is already being hurt by the fact that Iran imports almost 1/2 of its refined gasoline, and then subsidizes it so heavily that the consumer only pays ~$.40 per gallon).
13 posted on 02/01/2008 4:03:28 AM PST by tanknetter
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To: tanknetter
That would make for a hilarious twist on the "arms for hostages" deal. Perhaps parts could be surreptitiously traded for information on this and that... Iraqi ops and Hezbollah networks, for instance.
14 posted on 02/01/2008 4:52:51 AM PST by sinanju
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To: nuconvert

Ill-trained pilots and lack of accessories make these little more than drone targets.


15 posted on 02/01/2008 4:56:49 AM PST by G Larry (HILLARY CARE = DYING IN LINE!)
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To: nuconvert
Iran's weapons design capabilities are primitive, but the government has some excellent publicists,

Actually, they benefit from the ignorance and complicity of the western press.

16 posted on 02/01/2008 5:00:33 AM PST by Moonman62 (The issue of whether cheap labor makes America great should have been settled by the Civil War.)
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To: Vroomfondel; SC Swamp Fox; Fred Hayek; NY Attitude; P3_Acoustic; Bean Counter; investigateworld; ...
SONOBUOY PING!

Click on pic for past Navair pings.

Post or FReepmail me if you wish to be enlisted in or discharged from the Navair Pinglist.
This is a medium to low volume pinglist.

17 posted on 02/01/2008 5:11:06 AM PST by magslinger (cranky right-winger)
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To: sinanju
I’ve heard that too.
Problem is that they don’t need a lot of weapons, just two. A nuke and a few million idiots willing to walk into machinegun fire for their shot at 72 virgins. Their strategy vs Iraq was similar to the USSR. Walk through the minefields and into incoming fire until they ran out of bullets.
18 posted on 02/01/2008 5:20:41 AM PST by newnhdad
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To: magslinger

The F-14 aircombat records reveal few actual shoot-downs of enemy combatants. Specifically 4 Libyans and 1 Iraqi helo. All these were accomplished with the Sidewinder (heat-seeking) missles and not the much heralded Phoenix Missle. The Phoenix system was designed exclusively for the Tomcat as a tool to “Fire and forget” six hostile targets. We must guess the Iranians have no way to maintain Phoenix systems air to air capabilities and will hang Sidewinders or similar devices. Suspect F-14 platform will be for their cruise missles or a suicide aircraft to attach CAPITAL targets (CVs).


19 posted on 02/01/2008 6:32:20 AM PST by Broker (Grandpa Petti Bones wants to know.)
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To: Broker
Yes, The F-14 itself is a guided missile. Aircraft Carriers in the Persian Gulf need to closely monitor their air radar, Squawk IDs and authentication procedures. Battle groups sea whiz and SA missile systems; up and ready????
20 posted on 02/01/2008 6:54:42 AM PST by Broker (Grandpa Petti Bones wants to know.)
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To: Broker

The main intent of the long ranged AIM-54 Phoenix was to deal with incoming Bears, Badgers, later Backfires, and incoming Kingfish and Kitchens. Now the AIM-120D has a similar range, in a smaller, lighter package.


21 posted on 02/01/2008 5:32:16 PM PST by Fred Hayek (Leftism is a mental disorder)
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