Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Israel shoots down Syrian Su-24 attack aircraft

(Golan Heights) Israel today shot down a Syrian airforce Su-24 strike aircraft which flew 800 metres into Israeli airspace and then, when the crew realised their mistake of broaching the Israeli border, they quickly turned around, but too late, and an Israeli Patriot missile took it out of the sky.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu went on TV and explained that as Israel is such a tiny country, they don't have the luxury of depth in which to give such incursions any latitude, he stated that any jet crossing into Israel can be over Tel Aviv within minutes, so they shot it down. Syrian state TV confirmed Israel had shot down one of its planes and described it as an act of aggression.

The Su-24 (NATO name Flogger) first flew in 1975 and was designed as a long range low-level strike attack aircraft with all-weather precision attack capability. With the ability to carry 8,000 kg of ordinance 2,000 miles, it became something of a best seller for the Soviet Union who exported it to at least 12 countries, of which Syria received 22, all of which were upgraded to the Su-24M2 standard by Russia between 2009-2013. However, the improved combat efficiency of the plane, including new navigation system, didn't do it any good earlier on today.