F-16A/B versus ZSU-23-4 Shilka/SA-8

Agreed, it will never be a fair fight but how would the F-16 match up against the ... ?
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Unread post11 Feb 2005, 17:13

Imagine two Falcons are attacking tank battalion in wooden/urban areas, they have some CBU-87s and Rockeyes while tanks are secureed by 2 ZSU-23-4 Shilkas. It's broad daylight. How would it be? Will the battalion be defended?

I think that, if F-16 doesn't use Mavericks (or other standoff weapons), has no chance against ZSU. It must use AGM-65D/G to avoid SA-8, because "Gecko" is resistent to ECM jamming, and AGM-65A/B have too short range - when firing, Falcon is in SA-8's range and it can be shot down.


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Unread post18 Feb 2005, 19:58

A situation like this is not very likely to happen, as most air forces are very aware of the Gecko and Shilka abilities and wouldn't use the CBU-87 alone for such a mission.

But, if it happens, the F-16 will surely be within the lethal range of the Gecko and/or the Shilka, so it's a suicide mission.

If the only weapons available are the CBUs or older Mavericks then, most probably, the tanks would be well defended by the Gecko, as a pilot wouldn't risk his life in such a situation.

But the Shilkas won't do it, as long as the Viper remains all time in medium altitude. Moreover, using CBUs in urban areas is VERY unlikely, due to the risk of collateral damage (and the harsh political results from this).

Using WCMD (Wind Corrected Munition Dispenser) versions of the CBUs, however, the Viper might be able to launch the CBUs at high altitude (altough the CBUs won't get much range yet), then maybe, I say maybe, it would get itself out the effective range of the Gecko and Shilka air defense systems. If the CBUs use the DiamondBack wings AND the WCMD, then the CBUs would surely be able to outrange the Gecko. In this case, the tanks and the AD (Air Defense) systems will be toasted. 8)

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