Saddam's Pilots Teach ISIS to Fly

Former pilots for Saddam's air force are reportedly teaching ISIS to fly. Among the aircraft: MI-G fighter planes they got from Syria in battle. The fighter jets have been spotted over Aleppo in Syria.

Islamic State (Isis) is takings its first steps towards building an air force by training pilots to fly captured fighter planes, according to a group monitoring the conflict in Syria.

Isis is using lots of tanks, armoured personnel carriers, artillery and Jeeps taken from the Syrian and Iraqi armies but this is the first report that it has planes in the air.

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    Saddams pilots haven't flown in about 20 yrs (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 17, 2014 at 09:26:01 PM EST
    And weren't very highly trained to begin with. I think this story somewhat unlikely.  Even if they do have 3 MiGs and they manage to get all three in the air, it's kind of a so what item.  It is neither the time or the place for a "noob".  They will be easily shot down.

    They might get shot down (none / 0) (#2)
    by toggle on Sat Oct 18, 2014 at 06:40:48 PM EST
    If they tried to fight conventionally. But what happens if they decide to use those planes as manually guided missiles?

    Depending on what variant of MiG (none / 0) (#3)
    by ruffian on Sat Oct 18, 2014 at 10:18:37 PM EST
    we are talking about , they might have about a 1500 mile one way range if not carrying missiles. Just for information. Once again, ISIS is a threat to its immediate neighbors. Maybe they ought to do something about them.

    Put yourself (none / 0) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 11:17:07 AM EST
    in their position.   Why should you?  We are doing it.



    They claim to have heavy artillery (none / 0) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 12:01:34 PM EST
    Burning a MiG in doesn't make much sense.  Basically a waste of an asset. If they wanted to attack someone in the region a little more sneakily from a distance it is still a poor weapon.  It isn't like slamming a fully fueled jumbo jet into something. And with the assistance of radar, whoever they were attacking would know they were coming.

    The Japanese used the tactic to sink ships.  In battlefield terms there is bang for your buck in that tactic I suppose.  I would think their success extremely unlikely though in modern warfare.  They might be able to complete such a mission and one get through if they had a swarm of MiGs, but they don't and I don't see how they ever will.


    I think they were asking more in the sense (none / 0) (#10)
    by ruffian on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 02:42:59 PM EST
    of flying it into a building in a 9/11 style attack - not really using it in a battle situation.  At least that was how I read the question. Very good point about the fuel and size of the plane - much less likely to do serious damage to a building than would be an airliner.

    If it really is 1500 miles... (none / 0) (#4)
    by toggle on Sat Oct 18, 2014 at 11:15:42 PM EST
    That's Rome or Vienna.

    So let the Austrian/Italian air force ... (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Yman on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 08:15:32 AM EST
    ... worry about them.

    Yes, a regional problem. I don't expect (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by ruffian on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 10:53:00 AM EST
    the Italians to protect me from the Mexican drug cartels, to cite just one example.

    They don't need our protection anyhow (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 12:09:38 PM EST
    They have their own air defense.  And it is extremely likely they would know well in advance that one of these MiGs was heading their way.  It would be shot down the minute it entered their airspace.

    exactly - the are not passenger jets (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by ruffian on Sun Oct 19, 2014 at 02:45:11 PM EST
    that are expected to be flying around. Europe has many decades of experience being on guard against MiGs in their airspace.