Skip to comments.France had Rafale jets armed with Scalp missiles ready for strike on Syria
Posted on 10/03/2013 10:32:10 PM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
France had Rafale jets armed with Scalp missiles ready for strike on Syria
By Richard Clements According to to French weekly le Nouvel Observateur (LNO) France came within hours of striking Syrian Chemical weapons sites after thinking that the U.S had planned a huge attack on Sept. 1, 2013.
The report states that French President Francois Hollande had convened a meeting early in the morning of August 31; the plan on how France was going to attack the chemical weapons sites was formed during this meeting.
According to LNO the French planned to fly Rafale jets supported by French tankers from French soil and launch the attack from international waters over the Mediterranean, avoiding Turkish airspace in an attempt to prevent Turkey from being attacked in retaliation by Syria, therefore avoiding the clause in the NATO constitution that would drag in the other member states into the conflict.
In the meeting, speeches were written so that Hollande would justify the attacks to the French public.
All of this had started after conversations with U.S politicians in the two previous days had lead the French to think that the U.S were to launch what would amount to a three day campaign.
Even on the Friday, the U.S was saying that it was going to strike soon and planned to contact the French on a hot line to give the go.
It took until 18.30 on Aug. 31 for the U.S President to contact Hollande and announce that he was going to seek congressional authorization, therefore calling off the attack.
The plan was for the Rafale jets to launch Scalp missiles onto targets within Western Syria: due to the 250km range of the missiles the French thought that the U.S would handle targets further inside Syria possibly using Tomahawk missiles.
The French were not to rely on US military assets for the attack according to the LNO article, on a sort of remake of the Mar. 19, 2011′s opening attack on Libya.
Richard Clements for TheAviationist.com
Image credit: Alexandre Paringaux/MBDA
Instead the attack poodle returned to his kennel, where he belongs.
Thanks for the great pics.
can you imagine, in all this confusion, I totally forgot about Syria. I wonder if this whole shutdown thing was meant to divert our intention away from it.
just goes to show what the 24 hour news cycle can do.
Those who were paying attention know the ONLY reason the US/France didn’t attack is because Putin threatened to fight back.
Putin told his ships to “prepare for a major confrontation”, after dark that Saturday night. And they had to know the NSA was listening.
I would LOVE to have been a fly on the wall when Obama got that panicked phone call.
The French, ever the warriors. Who would have guessed?
That is until someone explained that dropping bombs on ten ton vessels of sarin gas might be something Obama would do, but wiser heads needed a better plan. Down wind is Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, Israel, etc..... depending on which way the wind is blowing.
“The French, ever the warriors. Who would have guessed?”
I read a story some years ago about a Frenchman taken prisoner by Somali pirates. He killed them all and escaped. As in any society there are competent individuals. It’s the aggregate whole and their governance that have lost their way.
In a way the US may end up experiencing something similar. Considering the French owe a lot of their current portrayals to the way their political leadership acted, it is very possible that in the future the US will also be regarded the same considering the leadership it currently has. If such leadership persists, with ambassadors getting killed like vermin in foreign cities and the American brand rusting away, that may end up happening.
Anyways, about the French. They are the people who sank the Rainbow Warrior in a foreign port when it protested against their nuclear tests. They have a very interesting nuclear policy, where they first shoot of nuclear-tipped cruise missiles (the ASMP-A) as a warning shot, following which they can go ahead and use their strategic SLBMs. The only nations the pirates off Somalia fear more than the Russians is the French, and for good reason.