Missileers Against the Stealth: The first downing of the Stealth fighter in history, SA-3 vs F-117A over Serbia

Missileers Against the Stealth: The first downing of the Stealth fighter in history, SA-3 vs F-117A over Serbia

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Missileers Against the Stealth: The first downing of the Stealth fighter in history, SA-3 vs F-117A over Serbia
by Mike Mihajlovic Djordje Anicic (Author)


Arrow https://www.amazon.com/Missileers-Against-Stealth-.....B07PWRD2S5



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Foreword


Neva Against the STEALTH

After the NATO intervention against Yugoslavia, a considerable number of classified and unclassified works were written in major languages analyzing the subject: How the old missile system SA-3 Goa (S-125M1 Neva) was able to track and shot down the modern aircraft considered almost as invisible to the enemy radars, the famous US Air Force F-117A, proud of US aircraft industry and scourge of the Sadam’s air defence during the Gulf War. In these publications the different aspects of this events are addressed but not the single one (except maybe some highly classified analyses available only for the designated few) addresses the whole aspect in one. With this book the authors in a deep analytical way, using confirmed information, presented what happened before, during and after the event. Just a brief look into the table of contest shows that in front of us is authoritative work about the technology and tactics in the collision path which culminated in March 1999.

The reader is first introduced to the development and characteristics of radars, basis of the stealth technology and stealth program, missile guidance and development of SA-3 air defence system and anti radiation missiles as the main enemy of the missile units. What follows is the combat itself where the authors on interesting way talks about the missile crew roles as well as the opponent pilot and his views.

F-117A was, in technological way, far more advanced than the missile system and by all parameters presented before the war, it was considered invisible for the SA-3 system. Previous combat engagement greatly contributed to this aura of invincibility. This myth was crushed on night of March 27, 1999 when the first missile hit the target. What this event shows is that an obsolete missile system can be very useful if the crew who operates that system is properly trained and experienced. The combat was decided with the sole engagement of the missile crew, without any support from the brigade command or air defence network. There were no magic in the downing of stealth either. The missile system worked in own autonomous mode and it was able to detect, track, engage and destroy the aircraft who supposed to be invisible for the very same system.

The whole chapter is designated to the 3rd battalion as a winner in this duel with Stealth. This chapter in extensive manner covers the role of every member of the combat crew. It also includes training, tactical procedures, modes of readiness prior to combat engagement, regime of operations, tracking, target acquisition and much more in a very descriptive way which make the reader feels like he or she is in the missile guidance station. Of particular interests is the personal experience of Lt. Col. Anicic who was one of the commanders in the crew which downed stealth and his description of the event is priceless.

I was personally engaged in the deep analyses of this engagement and by the behaviour of every crew member, including the support units as well as the pilot (aircraft trajectory, speed, maneuver etc.) my conclusion was that the combat crew performed all tactical steps brilliantly. Commands issued to engage and stop the fire control radar in the short intervals were crucial for the safety of people and equipment denying the enemy use of antiradiation missiles. On the other hand, the pilot of F-117A performed also at the master’s level so that the missile hit him almost at the end of the range.

There are many questions left unanswered especially what happened after the radar imitator emissions few hours before duel, who picked up those signals, was there any alteration of the flight pre-programmed paths after the mission over Belgrade because the stealth return flight very closely matched the directions of the radar decoy emission azimuths, what happened with the other two blimps which Lt. Col. Anicic saw on the radar screen when the target was detected, did the pilot got any warning signal that he is illuminated by the fire control radar, why pilot said that he was hit by the second missile when only the first one actually acquire the target…There are some details on which only US side may have answers…In any case, after reading this book, the reader can get the own clues.

US Air Force engaged two F-117A squadrons (24 +1). After the combat operation seized, 22 airplanes flew back to the States on their own. One was confirmed as a combat loss and replaced with the fresh one, but it is publicly unknown what happened with the other two. According to the intelligence reports, these two didn’t flew to the States on their own. The question is: why?

NATO intention to destroy air defence capabilities of Yugoslav armed forces in the first few days of combat did not materialize even they were almost 600 times stronger. Yugoslav military withstood even some of the services such as stationary air surveillance units were crippled. Older SA-3 systems also suffered losses, but the other parts of the military were virtually intact. This war was also the place were NATO exercise different approaches. A vast number of aircraft were used including strategic aviation such as B-1B, B-2 and B-52. It is ever standing question what was the big target engaged on the night of May 19/20. Was that the strategic B-2 bomber? The authors devoted the whole section describing the available facts. The one thing is sure and that this will still be the subject of speculation for the time being.

And for the end, this book presents the new light in the dark world of manipulations and speculations about the previously mentioned events and definitely it will make many of them, created by both sides, to disappear.

Vladimir Neskovic, Eng., PhD, Col (ret)



The past is not to be forgotten…it is the path into the future


Facing the past always cause emotions and personal as well as cultural questioning. Relationship to the past, especially at the Balkans, is one of the benchmarks and etalon of the social development in our society. This year is 20th anniversary of the beginning of NATO aggression on Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. That March 24, 1999 at 19:45 the air raid sirens sounded for the first time since World War II. In the next 78 days and nights the bombs rained on Yugoslavia in a military intervention without any authorization by UN security council and with the sole decision of the mightiest military alliance in the world. NATO airplanes and ships launched more than 50.000 bombs and missiles on a small and independent country. Marko Savic and Milica Rakic were just a kids when their life’s cut short in the blink of explosions and became symbols of Serbia suffering and sacrifice. These two kids and many more others became the victims of operation “Allied Force”. Bombing of Yugoslavia ended on June 10 with the UN Security Council Resolution 1244 under which Serbia keeps the sovereignty over the Kosovo and Metohija territory, but that territory became the international protectorate under the UNMIK and KFOR control, which is just another name for the occupation.

What stood between NATO bombers and civilians was Yugoslav Armed Forces. One of the units which fight this cruel war was 3rd missile battalion form 250th air-defence missile brigade. This battalion and its people are part of this book. This battalion was the one who shot down the pride of US Air Force formidable F-117A Nighthawk. The greatness of this achievement is that it used old, almost obsolete Soviet SA-3/S-125 missile system which is considered nothing more than a “sling shot” in military circles.

Yugoslav air defence is officially only air defence in the world which was able to successfully engage and bring down the stealth airplane to this date but definitely is not the last one. This shutout in the sky over Serbia was an event which secured place in history books. The myth of invincibility and invisibility (as many times the term STEALTH is interpreted in the press) is crushed on the night of March 27 when at 20:42 the missile hit the aircraft. The missile system without people to manage it is just a pile of steel and cables and these people, member of the combat crew, are the unsung heroes of this event and they rightfully deserve the place in history. We must also be objective for the enemy at that time and that was the pilots who happened to be at the wrong place and at the wrong time.

This book is an exciting story about the Soviet made air defence missile system SA-3 Goa/S-125 Neva as well as stealth technology and the collision path of these two technologies culminated on the night of March 27. The book also covers the people behind these systems. Importance of this book is that it covers the subject which is very little known and prone to endless speculations both domestically and internationally. Historic value of this book is that it in full covers the whole event without prejudice and speaks about the facts. The way how this book is written, without any doubts, it will become the foundation for future references and researches.

Both authors are experienced technical and military professionals and speaks with the full authority of their rich knowledge. Lt. Col (ret) Djordje Anicic is one of the heroes in the combat crew which detected, engaged and downed the stealth airplane, the man who was one of the combat crew commanders and the man who developed tactics and procedures which radically improved air defence. Mr Mihajlo (Michael as he is known in Canada) Mihajlovic is an expert professional engineer with vast knowledge of engineering aspects of both missile systems, radars and stealth technology as well as military experience in Yugoslav and Canadian armed forces.

Authors guide the reader with documented, analytical, expert and exciting way with the step by step approach, covering the multiple aspect, not just the combat engagement. Through the nine chapters, the authors analyzed the technical development of radars, stealth technology and missile system, combat engagements, strategy and tactics in the previous wars, background of the Kosovo crises and the duel of two opponents. The book speaks of the missile crew, the “combat shift” and virtually put the reader in the individual roles of missile system operators. The book also extensively covers the role of the stealth pilot and his views.

This book is the product of love for the military history and technology. This book is also product of years of researches and multiple challenges. The book is based on the chapters that each one can be read independently and yet each chapter supports the others and forms well organized and founded structure. It covers not only pure technical description but also strong historical aspects and backgrounds. All texts, for the first time, are based on the extensively researched materials, documents, literature and methodically very well set up with each subject covered with authors personal approach. Authors carefully compares available sources using their knowledge and experience. Through the text, a very clear authors erudition and skills in handling the complex technical issues is recognizable. They shall be prized for the style and cleanness in expressing their thoughts. Authors presented very complex issue with the clear and understandable way so that an ordinary reader, who is not into the subjects, can easy navigate through material and understand complexity of the problem.

The intention of the authors was not to write very narrow publication about missiles, stealth, radars and combat. It was rather the dive into the historical events with the deep background support which presents the problem through the multiple angles. The reader is guided through the multiple sources with the apex when those sources met over Serbia. Consequences of that event influenced and will be influencing the future air and missile defence in the wars to come. The book is written with the intention that the readers understand all challenges and complexity of the events which professional soldiers face but also have the personal touch through the eyes of the missile crews and the pilots, their fears, expectations and thoughts – fight and live to fight another day.

This book is rich in illustrations, diagrams and drawings which add the graphic visualization and support the texts. The approach of this book represents the new and inspiring way of thinking and presenting. The value of the book is that is valuable source for the military history and can be classified as a textbook. Relevant and actual bibliography, which includes printed scientific publications, textbooks, history books and web-based material can be used for the further in-depth research of the specific subjects.

To describe the value of this book, we can’t make mistake if we classify it as a deep source of information which streams to us and guide us to the new researches and the new horizons of knowledge. The past can’t be forgotten – it is a path into the future.

This book presents the enormous contribution to the history and the culture of remembrances and I am recommending it with the great pleasure.

Belgrade
February 11, 2019

Vladica Tosic
Historian, politicologist and specialist for the international affairs



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Missileers Against the STEALTH - Raketasi Protiv STELTA
Prva knjiga na Engleskom jeziku o obaranju "nevidljivog" koja donisi i obradjuje stvarne cinjenice
Knjiga se pojavila na dvadesetogodisnjicu obaranja.

Књига садржајем кроз девет поглавља обрађује четири главне теме: радаре, системе пресретања и праћења, ракетне системе противваздушне одбране и сукоб застарелог руског ракетног система “С-125М1 „ Нева” и НАТО „стелт“ технологије. Технологије које су се нашле супротстављене над небом Србије, ратне 1999.године када је једна мала, независна држава, усред Европе, била брутално нападнута моћним савезом због политичких разлога који су веома контроверзни.

Намера књиге је да детаљно опише и просветли један историјски догађај од 27.марта који је пре 20.година у ноћи када се ваздушни рат заувек променио , уздрмао, обликовао и дао смернице развоју авијације. Догађај када се застарели ракетни систем сукобио са најсавременијим авионима најмоћнијег војног савеза на свету и из сукоба изашао као победник.

Књига представља значајан допринос историографији и култури сећања. Богата је илустрованим фотографијама, шемама и мапама, графичким приказима и документима који на нов и инспиративан начин чине материју разумљивом и корисном. Књига представља вредан допринос изучавању војне историје и има карактер уџбеника.

..........................
The intention of this book is to describe and enlighten in detail one event that shook, shaped and steered the aviation twenty years ago. That event happened when something that was marvel in aviation been brought down with something that was, at the time of use, almost obsolete. This book took the approach firstly through the eyes of missile crew than through the eyes of pilot in the last war of 20th century where one small, independent country, in the middle of Europe, was brutally attacked by mighty alliance for the sake of political reasons that are very controversial. But this event was not just the end of experiment, rather the beginning. We can say for sure that in the future stealth and missiles will meet many more times in the sky over some other countries.

After the NATO aggresion against Yugoslavia, in some books written in English, the subject of how the old missile system SA-3 Goa (S-125M1 Neva) was able to track and shot down the famous USAF F-117A was briefly touched. In these books the different aspects of this events are addressed but not the single one (except maybe some highly classified analyses available only for the designated few) addresses the whole aspect. There are many speculations and myths circling in the printed materials and especially on the web, but they are far away from the truth. With this book, the authors in a deep analytical way using confirmed information, presented what happened before, during and after the event and basically flush away those speculations and myths surrounding the stealth downing.

There are many extraordinary books covering subjects such as radars, stealth technologies, airplanes and air defence suppression. Majority of radars and stealth technologies books are highly specialized and intended for narrow circles of professionals. Air defence materials and manuals are especially intended for end users who are usually from the military. NATO aggression on Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999 is covered in few books and there are handful publications in different languages that put some of this subject together, but not a single one is combination of all previously mentioned.

The authors didn’t want not to write a pure technical book simply because there are plenty of technical publications and manuals about the radars, stealth, missiles, air defence suppression, development programs etc. The intention was also not to just address the historical events, but rather to combine all of that in a story which can tell both professional in their respectful field and also general public how the clash of two technologies culminated in the sky over Serbia and what are the consequences for the technology development and impacts on future of the air warfare.

One of the challenges with this type of approach is to objectively expose errors without casting the slightest shadow on those who took an oath and fought for their countries. In majority of books about air warfare, there is usually an accent on one side, depends who the author is and for which audience the book is intended. Of course, majority books are related to the pilots - fighter pilots, bombers or "wild weasel" crews. This book took another approach. In this book the authors tried to put the reader into the cabin of the missile fire control center as well as into the aircraft cockpit. All the crews tried to do is their duty as best as they can and live to fight another day. As the operation of both missile crew and pilot are highly technical, an additional approach was made to explain the technology behind so that the ordinary reader who is not military or engineering educated can understand the complexity behind. A large number of authentic photos and illustration is used to support the text and help the reader to better understand the written material.

The reader may ask: Can this book be used to train somebody to shot down the aircraft? The answer is no, of course. That is, by all means, not simple and high degree of training is necessary, but this book put the light on how trained crews can do that even with the obsolete missile system. The other question: Is there a "magic bullet" how to shoot stealth airplane? The answer is again no, but there are methods and procedures described in a plain way. Stealth technology is far from the perfection such as described in numerous marketing materials. In the background, it is very well explored, and measures and countermeasures are developed. Some of the radar cross section diagrams used as an illustration of the most modern stealth airplanes are among the very first one ever published besides the very narrow circles of experts.

We can say with the utmost certainty that in some future wars the stealth aircraft and missiles crews will meet. Will that be in the sky over Syria, Venezuela, Iran, North Korea, or some other place, the time will show.

Highlights:
........
The extraordinary story of the band of maverick missileers and the first combat downing of the STEALTH aircraft in history.All they have is less than 30 seconds to acquire the target, engage it and bring it down. Everything longer than that short time frame means possibility of their own destruction. What was their “tool of trade”? The obsolete missile system...a slingshot to fight most modern aircraft of the mightiest military alliance in the world...And they used that slingshot to bring down those aircraft. They were targeted many times, attacked with the missiles and packs of SAM hunter-killers but they withstood and survived to fight another day...and to win their own battles. This is the story about them...The story of the band of maverick missileers and the first combat downing of the STEALTH aircraft in history as seen through the eyes of someone who was there...but this is also the story of their opponents as well...and the story about the technologies - radars, stealth, missile guidance, SA-3 on their collision courses which culminated on March 27, 1999 at the sky over Serbia in the night when the air warfare changed for good... The intention of this book is to describe and enlighten in detail one event that shook, shaped and steered the aviation twenty years ago. That event happened when something that was marvel in aviation been brought down with something that was, at the time of use, almost obsolete. This book took the approach firstly through the eyes of missile crew than through the eyes of pilot in the last war of 20th century where one small, independent country, in the middle of Europe, was brutally attacked by mighty alliance for the sake of political reasons that are very controversial. But this event was not just the end of experiment, rather the beginning. Definitely, in the future stealth and missile will meet many more times in the sky over some other countries. Both authors participated in that war in the air defence and intelligence roles. Lt. Col. Anicic, as a missile battalion deputy commander and executive officer, was personally involved in downing F-117A. Because of the necessary requirements of security, both stealth and air defence materials are not widely known and there are a lot of speculations about these events, both in the printed material and also on the web. Some of them are pure imagination and some of them are close to the truth. The real truth is now known to a very narrow circle of experts but even there some the finest details are not known. The intention of the authors was not to write a pure technical book simply because there are plenty of technical publications and manuals about the radars, stealth, missiles, air defence suppression, development programs etc. The intention was also not to just address the historical events, but rather to combine all of that in a story which can tell both professional in their respectful field and also general public how the clash of two technologies culminated in the sky over Serbia and what are the consequences for the technology development and impacts on future of the air warfare.One of the challenges with this type of approach is to objectively expose error without casting the slightest shadow on those who took an oath and fought for their countries. In majority of books about air warfare, there is usually an accent on one side, depends who the author is and for which audience the book is intended. Of course, majority books are related to the pilots - fighter pilots, bombers or "wild weasel" crews.

This book covers four major topics:
• radars;
• low observable and low probability of intercept (LO and LPI) of radars often called STEALTH;
• air defence missile system and
• personal accounts of clash between air defence missile system and stealth airplane(s).

In some sections, all of them are covered, because the signatures often interact.

• Chapter 1 provides an introduction and history of radars. It also includes basic explanation of electronic warfare (EW).
• Chapter 2 covers stealth technology.
• Chapter 3 covers missile guidance for the most common systems.
• Chapter 4 surveys development of surface to air missile system SA-3/S-125 Neva and derivatives.
• Chapter 5 addresses anti-radiation missiles and their use.
• Chapter 6 covers SA-3/S-125 missile system combat history.
• Chapter 7 describes F-117 stealth program development.
• Chapter 8 covers war and combat engagement between F-117 and Yugoslav (Serbian) SAM during NATO aggression of Yugoslavia with personal details of SAM crews, stealth pilot and other aircraft pilots and combat search and rescue teams (CSAR).
• Chapter 9 deals with the aftermath of the war and consequences in stealth and air defence developments such as counter-stealth radars, BUK, S-300 and S-400 missile systems.

Researching material for this book, authors used an extensive amount of reference material and the list of sources is covered in section: Further Readings and Bibliography. More than one hundred of literary sources and video materials were used. A detailed glossary of potential unfamiliar terms and abbreviation appears at the end of this book.

Table of contest

PREFACE i
Foreword iv
Organization of the Book ix
Table of Contest x
About the Authors xii
CHAPTER ONE
Radar 1
Early History of Radar 1
Radar Fundamentals 4
Radar System and Radar Range 4
Radar Range Equation 8
Detection Range 9
The Antenna 9
Radar Displays 11
Operational Frequency Band 12
Basic Radar Functions 13
Military Applications of Radar Systems 14
Radar Cross Section and Reduction Methods 16
Principle of RCS Measurement 19
Integrated Air Defence Systems (IADS) 32
Radar Jamming 33
Decoys 37
Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) 42
Electronic Warfare (EW) 44
CHAPTER TWO
Stealth 55
The Stealth Challenge 57
The Stealth Approach 57
Stealth Principles 58
The scientific theory behind the STEALTH 58
Disadvantages of STEALTH 62
CHAPTER THREE
Missile guidance 71
CHAPTER FOUR
Complex S-125 "Neva" (SA-3 Goa) 87
5V24 and 5V27 surface-to-air guided missiles 90
ZRK S-125M "Neva-M" 92
SAM system S-125M1 (S-125M1A) 94
The "Pechora" 95
CHAPTER FIVE
Anti – radiation missile against radar 109
HARM 113
New Century 117
CHAPTER SIX
S-125 Combat Engagements 125
War of Attrition and Yom Kippur War 126
Small Wars 131
Angolan Border Wars 136
Operation Desert Storm 137
CHAPTER SEVEN
The First Stealth Program 141
Hopeless Diamond and Have Blue 142
F-117 development and testing 146
Maintenance issues 157
Just Cause 158
Desert Storm 159
CHAPTER EIGHT
Prelude to War 171
Order of battle 174
Yugoslavian Air defense 174
USAF and NATO order of battle 177
Attack 177
3rd battalion 178
March 26 182
March 27 191
23 Seconds 192
How missile battalion works 197
Combat crew - the shift 201
Fighting sequences 206
… immediately after 209
Vega 31 224
The mystery of Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) 238
Combat Search and Rescue 240
F-16CG 246
Hammer 34 248
Something VERY BIG was in the air... 250
"Intelligence games and throwing dust in eyes…" 257
CHAPTER NINE
Aftermath 267
Successful Deception Measures 269
Fixed Air Defences Crippled … 270
F-117A Retirement and beyond 271
Future of SAM vs Stealth 275
Stealth Aircraft 276
Counter-Stealth Radar Systems 278
S-400 Triumf (Triumph) / SA-21 283
S-300 / SA-10 287
9K37 BUK / SA-17 292
NATO codification system 303
Glossary 305
Bibliography 321



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