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UK Air Force Pilots Ordered To Shoot Down “Hostile” Russian Jets Over Syria

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UK Air Force Pilots Ordered To Shoot Down "Hostile" Russian Jets Over Syria

Originally appeared at ZeroHedge

As the US officially enters the Yemen military campaign, the UK appears ready and willing to precipiate a catalytic event from which there is no going back. With relations between Russia and the West at post-Cold War lows and deteriorating fast, Royal Air Force (RAF) pilots have been given the go-ahead to shoot down Russian military jets when flying missions over Syria and Iraq, if they are endangered by them. The development comes with warnings that the UK and Russia are now “one step closer” to being at war, according to the Sunday Times.

While the RAF’s Tornado pilots have been instructed to avoid contact with Russian aircraft while engaged in missions for Operation Shader, the codename for the RAF’s anti-Isis work in Iraq and Syria, their aircraft have been armed with air-to-air missiles and the pilots have been given the green light to defend themselves if they are threatened by Russian pilots.

“The first thing a British pilot will do is to try to avoid a situation where an air-to-air attack is likely to occur — you avoid an area if there is Russian activity,” an unidentified source from the UK’s Permanent Joint Headquarters (PJHQ) told the Sunday Times. “But if a pilot is fired on or believes he is about to be fired on, he can defend himself. We now have a situation where a single pilot, irrespective of nationality, can have a strategic impact on future events.”

Where things get tricky is the qualifier “if he believes he is about to be fired on” – since this makes open engagement a function of threat evaluation in real time during stressed conditions, the likelihood of an escalation that could result in two warplanes shooting at each other, just jumped significantly.

The RAF Tornados aircraft will be armed with heat-seeking Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missiles (Asraams, also called AIM-132 missiles), the IBT adds. These weapons, which cost £200,000 each, have a longer range than other air-to-air missiles, allowing RAF pilots to shoot down enemy aircraft without being targeted themselves.

Providing cover to the largely underreported, if substantial escalation, according to the Sunday Times report an appraisal carried out by UK defence officials said: “It took six days for Russia to strike any Isis targets at all. Their air strikes have included moderate opposition groups who have been fighting to defend their areas from Isis. Among the targets hit were three field hospitals.” In the past 24 hours Russia’s Defence Ministry said that it has continued its air strikes on IS positions in Hama, Idlib, Latakia and Raqqa. It reported that the attacks resulted in the “complete destruction” of “53 fortified areas and strong points with armament and military hardware”, seven ammunition depots, four field camps of “terrorists”, one command centre, and artillery and mortar batteries.

Russia has countered that US airstrikes have failed to make much of an impact on ISIS targets, and as reported last month, a “mistaken” strike by the US coalition forces killed over 60 Syrian soldiers in a move Russia accused of being a provocation to war.

The Sunday Times’ report quoted a defence source as saying: “Up till now RAF Tornados have been equipped with 500lb satellite-guided bombs — there has been no or little air-to-air threat. But in the last week the situation has changed. We need to respond accordingly.”

But another source of the original story summarized the severity of the situation best when he said that “we need to protect our pilots but at the same time we’re taking a step closer to war. It will only take one plane to be shot down in an air-to-air battle and the whole landscape will change.

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Carol Davidek-Waller

It’s the French, the English and the Americans that are the illegal presence in Syria. The Russians have adhered to international law, unlike the western aggressors. My guess is the French pilots will not get the chance to cause any trouble. Russian Air Defense will destroy both their missiles and them if they try. This sort of dangerous bluster is dragging the world toward the abyss.
Allowing deeply disturbed minds to make decisions for billions of people cannot be allowed to continue.


I believe this story is a year old. The publication date is 2015 on the two linked original articles.


True, good point!


So, RAF aircrafts are given permission to fly over Syria!? Not a good idea whatever. They must be made respect Syrian government’s statement that any unauthorised flying object over the sky of Syria shall be downed instantly.


tye sy government gave permission in 2014, IF they attack ISIS.


Considering that France , UK , and US are keen on , but have not yet declared Syria , a “no-fly zone”, suggesting only they have control of Syrian airspace, I suggest President Assad beat them to the punch , and make that declaration himself .
Enforcement is not mandatory .
If Syria were to purchase hundreds if not thousands of the Iranian “Saeqeh – Lightning Bolt” (RQ 170) , selective enforcement becomes an option ,would be more cost effective , and might not require air strips . Syria needs a PR campaign in Europe .

The UK-Empire has been invading Iraq and Afghanistan and Syria for more then 300 years.
The UK founded Israel by promising it to the Jews in return for the Jews manipulating the American mind and media to trick the Americans into backing the UK-Empire into genociding central Europeans.
If the head of the beast (The UK-Empire) is cut off, then the body of Zionism will die.


again, the americans who are the author of all these troubles in the middle east are using their allies..(french and the british) as pawns. for petrodollar and world global domination sake, they are willing accomplice.


The link to Sunday Times is one year old.


I was not aware that we had declared war on Russia and the Middle East?

There is another article, on Sputnik, with regards UK Leaders being charged for War Crimes, courtesy of Yemen.


To quote from Indian epic Mahabharata – “Vinashkale vipareeta budhi”, meaning, when death beckons one always take the wrong decision! Good luck UK

Vincent P P

it is my opinion intelligent,that if uk,us, turkish, collition jets ,engage russian syrian air craft ,the missle defense system ,will take them out,then statigic nuclear weapons will come into play in middle east,allso in europe, my opion,berlin,rome,london brussels, other cities will be on the list, my prayer is that this will not happen,by the way the united states is depending on certain sure prophies, to keep them from harm,god does not protect stupid,jonathan a jewish king was told by god he would live a long life by a true phrophet of god,a egyptian crossed his kingdoms territory,to attack a king beyond the jewish territory,the pharo nicoh ,said to the jewish king do not meddle to your hurt ,I am not fighting you,the jewish king attacked and was killed,my point the united states goverment is aware of phrophies from ellen white a seveth day adventist that showed america would domminate or at least control the whole world,so they think they are bullet proof and all will back down,if the united states provokes a nuclear war,it can and will be desroyed,god does not do stupid,the good lord whom I serve is giving you fair warning ,bible will be fufilled,but not if you do stupid,you are playing with nuclear fire in middle east and europe.

Mark Moore

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