The downing of Speicher F/A-18: Iraqi perspective Jan 1991

Cold war, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm - up to and including for example the A-10, F-15, Mirage 200, MiG-29, and F-18.
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AfterburnerDecalsScott

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Unread post18 Nov 2017, 20:16

I've been to both Al Assad and TQ...never saw a fenced off 2-seat 25...I would have taken all sorts of pictures of it.

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AfterburnerDecalsScott

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Unread post18 Nov 2017, 20:28

piston wrote:Guys, post some schemes, please!


These are all the F-18s...

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Line up for VFA-81 strike on Al Taqqadam 1/17

AA401 - "Spock" Anderson
AA402 - "Chauncey" Gardner
AA403 - "Spike" Speicher
AA404 - "Bano" Albano
AA406 - "Skull" Hull
AA410 - "Banker" Caldwell

401 and 410 also participated in the later 1/17 strike that resulted in the 2 MiG-21 kills, flown by "MRT" Fox and "Mongo" Mongillo respectively.
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piston

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Unread post03 Feb 2019, 18:46

AfterburnerDecalsScott wrote:
piston wrote:Guys, post some schemes, please!


These are all the F-18s....


I am sorry, I have something like this in mind...

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mixelflick

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Unread post04 Feb 2019, 15:44

tomcooper wrote:
brcampbe01 wrote:Hello,

... Dawood told me he launched in a 2 seat trainer MiG-25 armed with 2 R40s. This is the aircraft that shot down Speicher, it was not a single seat interceptor. ...


Here a link to loads of photos of MiG-25PU (two-seat conversion trainer): https://www.airplane-pictures.net/type.php?p=4571

Mind showing me what radar should it have that could support deployment of R-40 missiles?


This sure is a curious claim. Never heard of a Mig 25PU even being armed with missiles, nevermind capable of downing another aircraft. The R-40 was ginormous, but came in at least 2 flavors (radar guided and infa-red). Maybe it was a heat seeker that got Spike?
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knowan

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Unread post06 Feb 2019, 03:58

mixelflick wrote:Maybe it was a heat seeker that got Spike?


Given it was a head-on shot, that would require the R-40T to be all-aspect, which is unlikely given when the missile was developed.

EDIT: On further look, there were more modern R-40T variants with all-aspect seekers, so it is possible, if Iraq had those improved missiles available.
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piston

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Unread post21 Feb 2019, 20:33

The incredible story of denial, deceit, and deception that ultimately cost Navy pilot Captain Michael Scott Speicher his life is exposed in this military tell-all. Asserting that years of information has been intentionally kept from an American public, the book reveals that, contrary to reports, Speicher survived after he ejected from his stricken F/A-18 Hornet on the first night of the Persian Gulf War. Protected by a Bedouin tribal group, he evaded Saddam’s capture for nearly four years. In that time he was repeatedly promised by an American intelligence asset that a deal for his repatriation would be worked out but it never was. Speicher was left behind. After Saddam Hussein captured him, Speicher spent the next eight years in a secret Baghdad prison and being moved around in secret to avoid an American task force looking for him, and before he was killed after the United States invaded Iraq in March 2003. Author Amy Waters Yarsinske, a former naval intelligence officer and a veteran investigator and author, presents her fascinating case after years of research.


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:shock: :shock: :shock:
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popcorn

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Unread post21 Feb 2019, 21:46

Seriously? :bang:
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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basher54321

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Unread post22 Feb 2019, 02:13

This CIA doc from 2001 unsurprisingly suggests they didn't have clue where he was.

CIA FOIA DOC_0000588922.pdf
CIA FOIA
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Unread post22 Feb 2019, 02:17

I005 – Sunliner 403/F-18, USN
LCDR Michael Speicher of VFA-81, deployed aboard the USS Saratoga, launched as part of this strike. Proceeding
through Saudi airspace, his aircraft suffered a series of electrical malfunctions that degraded his ability to employ his
HARMs. His radar warning system also failed, denying him the ability to detect enemy radars. Regardless, he pressed on
with the mission.
En route, Iraqi MiG-25s were reported airborne and active south of the formation near the airfield at Mudaysis. As Speicher’s unit turned toward the MiG-25s, several pilots reported AAA near the airfield. A few minutes later a pilot in the strike package spotted an explosion and reported it as an air-to-air engagement. Two minutes later, the same pilot reported a larger ground explosion. He had not observed an ejection. Subsequently, Speicher was noted as missing when he failed to answer radio calls.

One of the pilots in Speicher’s unit recalled the event. “I remember us all saying at that time, ‘Where’s [Speicher]?’ . . . We checked a couple of times, tried different frequencies and got nothing. We called the AWACS to see if they had him. Nothing. I got on the radio with the JRCC in Riyadh via AWACS and told them we were missing an airplane.”56 The JRCC records do not show that such a call was received.57
Returning to the ship, one of the pilots immediately went to the intelligence Center to report the loss. He stated that the explosion that he had witnessed did not appear to have been “survivable.” Additionally, neither he nor anyone else had heard any calls on the emergency frequencies. But the pilots had been briefed that the Iraqis had the ability to “DF” or home in on survival radios, and it was possible that, if Speicher were down, he might have avoided using his radio for this reason.
As more aircrews recovered from the strike and nobody reported hearing from Speicher, hopes ebbed. Unbelievably, his
loss was not immediately reported to the NRCC. Additionally, the coordinates finally reported were wrong.58
On this first strike, two aircraft were reported down. The second one was logged as incident I006 and was supposedly an A-6. It took several hours of hard work by the SAR control.....


From Combat Search and Rescue (USAF Uni Press)
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mixelflick

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Unread post22 Feb 2019, 15:48

piston wrote:
The incredible story of denial, deceit, and deception that ultimately cost Navy pilot Captain Michael Scott Speicher his life is exposed in this military tell-all. Asserting that years of information has been intentionally kept from an American public, the book reveals that, contrary to reports, Speicher survived after he ejected from his stricken F/A-18 Hornet on the first night of the Persian Gulf War. Protected by a Bedouin tribal group, he evaded Saddam’s capture for nearly four years. In that time he was repeatedly promised by an American intelligence asset that a deal for his repatriation would be worked out but it never was. Speicher was left behind. After Saddam Hussein captured him, Speicher spent the next eight years in a secret Baghdad prison and being moved around in secret to avoid an American task force looking for him, and before he was killed after the United States invaded Iraq in March 2003. Author Amy Waters Yarsinske, a former naval intelligence officer and a veteran investigator and author, presents her fascinating case after years of research.


Image

:shock: :shock: :shock:


WTF?

There is no rest for this man's family. I recall the first night of the war when one of the higher ups said that all aircraft and aircrew were accounted for (after the initial strikes). His family must have sighed a huge sigh of relief. Then he's MIA. Then presumed dead. Then evidence emerges he may have been captured.

Now this.

I sure hope it isn't just a ploy to sell books...
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piston

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Unread post23 Feb 2019, 22:38

AfterburnerDecalsScott wrote:
piston wrote:Guys, post some schemes, please!



Line up for VFA-81 strike on Al Taqqadam 1/17

AA401 - "Spock" Anderson
AA402 - "Chauncey" Gardner
AA403 - "Spike" Speicher
AA404 - "Bano" Albano
AA406 - "Skull" Hull
AA410 - "Banker" Caldwell

401 and 410 also participated in the later 1/17 strike that resulted in the 2 MiG-21 kills, flown by "MRT" Fox and "Mongo" Mongillo respectively.


By the way, why Speicher 's name is on 406?
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milosh

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Unread post24 Feb 2019, 21:15

How many coalition fighters and Iraq's fighers were in that area when MiG-25 downed F-18?
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Unread post25 Feb 2019, 14:42

milosh wrote:How many coalition fighters and Iraq's fighers were in that area when MiG-25 downed F-18?


Quite a few, if I remember correctly. There was (as in most combat) a lot of confusion. It was night time, so that added to it. He was a damn brave pilot to press on with the attack, especially given his RWR (and other) failures. I'm not sure we know enough to say he knew he was being painted by the Mig-25's radar. Sounds like he didn't, but its possible he got a radio call telling him they were in the area (and close).

The R-40 is a BIG missile. The biggest AAM of all time, if I recall correctly. Had he known he was painted and had adequate warning of a missile launch, it's likely is hornet could have out-maneuvered the missile. Being as large as it is, the R-40 isn't particularly agile. The hit was lethal though. If memory serves, it severed at least one of his EFT's and other stores from his aircraft.

In all candor, it sounded like from initial and ongoing reports like the Iraqi pilot may not have known he downed Spike. If there were SAM's active in the area (and it's a good bet they were), this would have just added to the confusion. If this book is correct, he survived the ejection. I'm not sure I believe that, but suppose it's possible.

He died a hero, and his family needs to know that..
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Unread post25 Feb 2019, 19:20

Best info so far would suggest there were only maybe a few other MiG-29s up but really clutching at straws.

It seems the MiG-25PD(S) took off alone and was tracked and locked onto by another FA-18 but it managed to escape while the FA-18 pilot (Mike Anderson) was still trying to get AWACs confirmation despite having an EID.
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tomcooper

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Unread post09 Mar 2019, 12:36

knowan wrote:
mixelflick wrote:Maybe it was a heat seeker that got Spike?


Given it was a head-on shot, that would require the R-40T to be all-aspect...
Who said it was a head-on shot?

EDIT: On further look, there were more modern R-40T variants with all-aspect seekers, so it is possible, if Iraq had those improved missiles available.

Actually, the reason for existence of IR-homing variants of specific Soviet missiles (like R-40T), and for the existence of SAR-homing variants was a combination of factors like early Russian pulse Doppler radars being foremost able of detecting and tracking only targets approaching them, but not the targets distancing themselves from the radar, or flying perpendicular to it; correspondingly,

- R-40R was to be used for attacks from the forward hemisphere (supported by radar, of course), and

- R-40T was to be used for attacks from the rear hemisphere (supported by the IRST).

The missile that hit Speicher's F/A-18C was an R-40RD - an export-, but still improved variant of the original R-40R. And, it approached and hit from the left rear side (approx 7-8 o'clock as seen from Speicher's position).

The reason Speicher didn't know he was under attack is that his RHAWs failed already before take-off. He decided to continue the mission, though.

...of course, this all was 'supported' by the AWACS failing to provide permission to fire to Speicher's formation leader, who had a firm lock-on on the Foxbat while this was still approaching from the north, and then the failure of the AWACS to track the Foxbat as this passed by, made a turn around the USN's formation and re-attcked.
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