Saturday, February 24, 2018

Deir Ezzor Event: Escalation likely

Two independent sources have now reported the presence of Su-57 stealth fighter at Khmeimim airbase.  This increases the likelihood that contemporaraneous reports of a buildup of RuAF air superiority assets in the region are correct.

These are the latest images from satellite.

and here is the video of the a/c on approach to Khmeimim. 

I am not sure if the a/c are being deployed there to boost RU morale after the Deir Ezzor fiasco or whether this is an attempt to challenge the US air superiority. 

Either ways - given the importance of Deir Ezzor in the grand scheme of things in Syria and how badly Putin now needs a victory in Syria to save face with the elite of the Grand Duchy of Moscow - a fresh assault on Deir Ezzor (or elsewhere is to be expected).

In light of that - the RuAF in Khmeimim may attempt to maintain a BARCAP. If the RuAF BARCAP can get into place before the US can deploy its CAP - then the Russians will have the upper hand in the escalation. Like a well positioned queen on a chess board they will deter the US from pursuing an effective air to ground role. 

This of course is over and above any stunts Trump might pull to compromise the US position from his perch in the White House. 

Situation is likely to escalate. 


At 10:51 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

while incirlik has been pretty much neutralized to the us, jordan, kuwait and iraq have not. should the rodina challenge us air power there will be a clash of titans for sure. while i am not so silly enough to make futuristic predictions, i safely surmise there will be no free lunch for anybody. look for the us to add growlers and awacs also. they won't make any announcements about it.

At 10:55 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

there's a very remote chance marine f-35b's could be sent to iraq also. won't that be fun?

At 10:59 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

the cultural differences are this.......the us won't make a move w/o air cover.....just not gonna happen......the russians, it is optional.

At 10:39 AM, Blogger maverick said...

Neither side is interested in an actual air war.

The key appears to be the ability to position a BARCAP before the adversary does.

Interestingly I feel that the PAF had a similar problem in Kargil. With the Mig29s and the Mirage 2k in the air, there was no hope of displacing them even with F-16s. The situation was made worse by the fact that the PAF could not have fully loaded F-16s take off from Skardu and have any meaningful patrol. The ac could get off the ground but the patrol would last an hour at most. Even if gaps did develop in the IAF CAP the PAF could not jump in and take the lead.

This was bad because of the "no airpower" barrier. Neither Nawaz Sharif nor ABV wanted to start an air war. To keep the PAF on the back foot, the IA mobilized all along the LoC, which acted as a further drag on the PAF's heels. They couldn't tell if they were going to face commitments to the south or if they should release forces to the north.

The end result was that PA positions at Muntho Dhalo and Gultari were exposed to IAF action with not possibility of interference by PAF. Even the Nubra Flight was able to mount rocket attacks on the NLI sanghars at high altitude, and PAF was completely frozen.

There is IMHO cause for concern with the Su-57 deployment in Khmeimim. I do not know what the timescale for a RuAF CAP deployment is. I cannot rule out that a gap may appear in the USAF CAPs in the area or that the RuAF will not be able to penetrate such a gap and create space for a rapid ground offensive.

It is best not to become overconfident.

Or I guess one could become overconfident and then blame Trump for the fiasco. I dunno what's better.

At 10:41 AM, Blogger maverick said...

more data

At 11:16 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

and oh btw, we're going to start intercepting noko ships at sea.

At 11:37 AM, Blogger maverick said...

And trade war... coz we can win those easily.


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