U.K. Royal Air Force (RAF) Deploys Enhanced Paveway III Bombs for Libya Operations

Discussion in 'Americas' started by Someoneforyou, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. Someoneforyou

    Someoneforyou Regular Member

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    Enhanced Paveway III bombs ready for action in Libya
    UNITED KINGDOM - 31 MAY 2011

    Royal Air Force capabilities for missions over Libya have been increased with the arrival of Enhanced Paveway III bombs at Gioia del Colle air base in southern Italy.

    The 2,000-pound (907kg) bombs, which are designed to punch through the roof or wall of a hardened building, have been prepared for use and could be loaded onto an aircraft and flown to attack a Gaddafi-regime target in Libya in just a few hours.

    The arrival of the Enhanced Paveway III bombs adds to a suite of complementary air-to-ground weapons carried by the RAF's Typhoon and Tornado aircraft.

    With Enhanced Paveway II, Paveway IV, and dual-mode seeker Brimstone, the RAF was already equipped to strike a range of targets while minimising collateral damage.

    Enhanced Paveway III gives the RAF an additional capability to attack hardened structures in Libya like command centres or communications nodes. Such targets are key to disrupting regime control of its forces, preventing attacks that could target civilians.

    Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox said:

    "The introduction of Enhanced Paveway III bombs is another way in which we are developing our tactics to protect civilians and achieve the intent of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1970 and 1973.

    "We are not trying to physically target individuals in Gaddafi's inner circle on whom he relies, but we are certainly sending them increasingly loud messages. Gaddafi may not be capable of listening but those around him would be wise to do so."

    Over the weekend UK Armed Forces were again in action over Libya as part of NATO's Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR to protect Libyan civilians under threat of attack and enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973.

    The Chief of the Defence Staff's Strategic Communications Officer, Major General John Lorimer, said:

    "Royal Air Force Tornado and Typhoon ground attack aircraft destroyed a main battle tank near Jadu on Saturday, and on Sunday engaged a multiple rocket launcher and support vehicles south of Zlitan.

    "On Monday, further RAF patrols near Zlitan located five heavy transporters carrying main battle tanks - all were destroyed or severely damaged. RAF VC-10 tankers, and Sentinel, Sentry and Nimrod R1 surveillance aircraft, continue to provide vital and widespread support to UK and NATO operations over Libya, while Royal Navy vessels maintain their surveillance patrols off the coast."


    Enhanced Paveway III bombs have arrived at Gioia del Colle air base in southern Italy ready for missions over Libya
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    Enhanced Paveway III bombs can be deployed in a matter of hours
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    Source: U.K. Ministry of Defence
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2011
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  3. Someoneforyou

    Someoneforyou Regular Member

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    U.K. Royal Air Force (RAF) destroys Gaddafi ammunition depot
    United Kingdom - 1 June 2011

    RAF Typhoon and Tornado jets struck ten Gaddafi-regime ammunition storage bunkers and a military vehicle yesterday at a site near Waddan in Libya, using Enhanced Paveway II and Paveway IV bombs.

    The bombs use both satellite and laser guidance to ensure they are as accurate as possible. Numerous secondary explosions, seen in video from the aircraft's Litening III targeting pods, showed that a significant quantity of munitions was stored at the site.

    The Chief of the Defence Staff's Strategic Communications Officer, Major General John Lorimer, said:

    "Intensive air missions continued yesterday under NATO's Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR to protect Libyan civilians under threat of attack and enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973.

    "RAF ground attack aircraft conducted successive strikes against one of Colonel Gaddafi's largest ammunition depots, located at Waddan in the central region of Libya.

    "As NATO operations have taken their toll of stockpiles closer to the coast, the regime has become increasingly dependent on Waddan for the ammunition to sustain its attacks on the civilian population.

    "The Tornado and Typhoon strikes yesterday destroyed ten ammunition bunkers and a military vehicle at the depot. RAF VC-10 tankers, and Sentinel, Sentry and Nimrod R1 surveillance aircraft, continue to provide vital and widespread support to UK and NATO operations over Libya, while Royal Navy vessels maintain their surveillance patrols off the coast."

    On Monday this week, RAF patrols near Zlitan located five heavy transporters carrying main battle tanks, destroying or severely damaging all of them.

    On Sunday, the RAF engaged a multiple rocket launcher and support vehicles south of Zlitan, and, on Saturday, they destroyed a main battle tank near Jadu.

    On Friday, 27 May, RAF Typhoons, along with other NATO aircraft, brought down guard towers along the walls of Colonel Gaddafi's Bab al-Azizia complex in the centre of Tripoli.

    Major General Lorimer said:

    "For decades, Colonel Gaddafi has hidden from the Libyan people behind these walls, spreading terror and crushing opposition. The massive compound has not just been his home, but is also a major military barracks and headquarters, and lies at the heart of his network of secret police and intelligence agencies.

    "Previous NATO attacks have hit command and control and other military facilities within the complex. This action sends a powerful message to the regime's leadership and to those involved in delivering Colonel Gaddafi's attacks on civilians that they are no longer hidden away from the Libyan people behind high walls."


    Still grabbed from RAF targeting pod footage of a successful strike on a Gaddafi-regime ammunition storage bunker
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    Source: U.K. Ministry of Defence
     
  4. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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  5. Someoneforyou

    Someoneforyou Regular Member

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    U.K. Royal Navy HMS Ocean and her gunships sent to Libya
    United Kingdom - 27 may 2011

    Britain’s biggest warship has been dispatched to the shores of Libya in case her Apache attack helicopters are needed.

    HMS Ocean, which has recently been exercising off Cyprus, carries four gunships – the first time the Devonport-based helicopter carrier has taken the Apache beyond UK shores.

    Whitehall has decided those helicopters could be required to support Operation Unified Protector and protect the free peoples of Libya from the Gaddafi regime. It believes committing the powerful warbirds will serve to "increase the pressure on the regime to end its persecution of the Libyan people".

    Four helicopters operating from Ocean will allow operational commanders to target Gaddafi's forces in line with United Security Council Resolution 1973 where they continue to pose a threat to the civilian population.

    Although Apache’s battle-proven in Afghanistan and has exercised with Royal Navy carriers sporadically over the past decade, it’s never formally deployed with a naval task group until now.

    To that end, the four helicopters from 656 Squadron Army Air Corps conducted their first live firings at sea just a few weeks ago in an exercise area off Gibraltar, loosing more than 500 rounds of 30mm cannon and nine Hellfire anti-armour missiles at targets – scoring a 100 per cent success rate with the latter.

    Ocean joins three Royal Navy vessels already supporting the NATO mission in the Gulf of Sirte:

    - HMS Liverpool, which recently opened fire on a shore battery after being targeted by pro-Government forces near Misrata;

    - HMS Brocklesby, which earlier this month blew up a mine laid by Gaddafi’s sailors off Misrata;

    - HMS Triumph, on her second tour-of-duty off Libya. The submarine has fired Tomahawk cruise missiles at military targets on both deployments, most recently against facilities used by the regime’s secret police near Tripoli.



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    Source: U.K. Ministry of Defence
     
  6. Someoneforyou

    Someoneforyou Regular Member

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    Apaches conduct operations over Libya
    United Kingdom - 4 June 2011

    Apache Attack Helicopters, flying from HMS Ocean, conducted their first operational sorties over Libya last night as part of NATO's Operation Unified Protector to protect civilians under United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973.

    The mission was carefully coordinated with other allied air missions by NATO's air operations centre, based at Poggio in Italy, and in particular was planned alongside an operation by French helicopters from the assault ship Tonnerre.

    Major General Nick Pope, the Chief of the Defence Staff's Strategic Communications Officer, said:

    "The Apaches were tasked with precision strikes against a regime radar installation and a military checkpoint, both located around Brega. Hellfire missiles and 30mm cannon were used to destroy the targets; the helicopters then returned safely to HMS Ocean.

    "In the same area, Royal Air Force ground attack aircraft destroyed another military installation, whilst a separate RAF mission successfully attacked two ammunition bunkers at the large Waddan depot in central Libya.

    "The targets which were prosecuted by the Attack Helicopters, Tornados and Typhoons had been carefully and rigorously selected; our understanding of the detailed disposition of Colonel Gaddafi's forces has been improving in a very satisfactory manner, despite their efforts to conceal themselves.

    "The UK and NATO have been clear throughout this operation that they will use whatever assets and resources are most appropriate to enforce UN Security Council Resolution 1973 and protect Libyan civilians under threat of attack.

    "Operations to date have made good progress in securing the No Fly Zone and preventing serious loss of life in Misratah and Benghazi. It is therefore now appropriate to employ Attack Helicopters to help intensify the effect that NATO can deliver at key points against regime forces which continue to threaten their own people.

    "As yesterday's operations demonstrate, the capabilities of the Apache complement well the precision strike and reconnaissance missions flown by NATO fast jets."

    Secretary of State for Defence, Dr Liam Fox, said:

    "This was the first operational mission flown by British Army Apaches at sea. Their deployment from HMS Ocean demonstrates the flexibility of not just the aircraft, but also the Royal Navy's Responsive Force Task Group, held at very high readiness for contingency operations around the world.

    "The additional capabilities now being employed by NATO further reinforces the UK's enduring commitment and NATO's determination to enforce UNSCR 1973 and ensure that the people of Libya are free to determine their own future.

    "The Attack Helicopter is yet another potent and formidable aircraft type which has now been added to the NATO forces engaged on this operation. Those who are still supporting Colonel Gaddafi would do well to realise that the best way to remove themselves from danger is to understand that their future lies with the Libyan people, not a discredited regime."

    The Commander of the Royal Navy's Response Force Task Group, Commodore James Kingwell, said:

    "This action highlights NATO's resolve to protect the Libyan people and it is a further example of the increasing pressure on Colonel Muammar Gaddaafi and his regime to recognise the will of the international community and cease attacks on his own people.

    "The successful and safe operations by Apache Attack Helicopters required a first class performance by the sailors, soldiers and Royal Marines across the Royal Navy's Response Force Task Group. I am very proud of all of their work so far which yet again underlines the versatility of this force.

    "The RFTG brings together a range of assets that, by operating from the sea, gives maximum flexibility to bring our military capabilities to bear wherever they are needed, at short notice, now and in the future. We remain ready for further operations.”

    The Apache Attack Helicopters are operated by crews of 656 Squadron, Army Air Corps, from the Royal Navy helicopter carrier, HMS Ocean. Ocean also has embarked a number of supporting Fleet Air Arm helicopters, including Sea King early warning aircraft.

    HMS Ocean is one of five Royal Navy ships that have been diverted from a long-planned exercise deployment (Cougar 11) to support the enforcement of UNSCR 1973, demonstrating the adaptability and flexibility of maritime forces.

    The task force, known as the Responsive Force Task Group, is led by Commodore John Kingwell in the flagship HMS Albion, which is equipped with excellent command and control facilities and a range of other capabilities. The ships are escorted by the Type 23 frigate, HMS Sutherland, and are supported by the Royal Fleet Auxiliaries Wave Knight (carrying fuel) and Fort Rosalie (carrying ammunition and stores).

    The RFTG had already proved the use of the Attack Helicopter in a maritime environment during its exercises in the Mediterranean, including the first test firing at sea by the UK of the Apache's advanced Hellfire missile.

    Other Royal Navy vessels - HMS Liverpool, HMS Brocklesby and HMS Triumph - have previously played major roles in the operation to enforce UNSCR 1973, and remain fully engaged on this task.


    An Apache helicopter fires 30mm cannon at sea, in exercise ranges off Gibraltar
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    An Army Air Corps Apache attack helicopter takes off from the deck of HMS Ocean, during training off the coast of Suffolk
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    Source: U.K. Ministry of Defence
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2011
  7. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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