Monday, October 29, 2007

Confirmations and More Blunders

The exact damages caused to aircrafts at the Anuradhapura SLAF base have been finally publicized by several media organizations this weekend. The same details were revealed by DefenceWire six days ago on October 23rd, prior to any official figures being released or newspaper reports indicating the accurate number lost. The current publicized and accurate figure is 23 fully damaged aircrafts and one partially damaged aircraft (MI24). These figures are as follows;

3- UAVs
1- Beech Super King B200T (C-12 Huron)
7- PT6 Trainers
1- Mi-17
1- Mi-24
6- K-8 Trainers
4- Siai Marchetti Bombers

Meanwhile renowned defence journalist Iqbal Athas has corrected himself regarding the interview given to the Hindustan Times of India that the Beech Super King was used for deep-sea Aerial Reconnaissance. This mistake was first highlighted by DefenceWire on October 25th. In his now irregular weekly defence column 'The Situation Report' (October 28th) he says that;

Contrary to a foreign media outlet, which misquoted me, the loss of this aircraft does not hamper deep-sea naval operations. However, it very badly hampers aerial surveillance activity over deep seas. Inputs from such surveillance helped in naval operations in a very large measure.

DefenceWire believes Athas has made another blunder when he said the Beechcraft has helped naval operations 'in a very large measure' since the last time the aircraft assisted the Navy was last September off Kalmunai when it captured the images of a fast-moving cargo boat, which was later destroyed.


jiffy said...

DW and other informed comrades,

regarding athas's report one thing i could not make heads or tails of is whether the bell 212 arrived on the scene ahead of the two zlin aircraft or afterwards. going by his timeline it would appear the former is true. something else athas neglects to elucidate here is whether the shoot down orders from colombo HQ to AAFB came on the back of info relayed by ground radar operators at vavuniya. is it the case (and i'm guessing again) that these radar units picked up the zlins AFTER the Bell was already in the air? and it still doesn't explain why this was communicated without ALSO letting personnel at AAFB know that a Bell 212 was on its way..

sorry if that's out of topic comrades, but reading the article left me with more questions than answers.

Lankapura said...

I am confused now.. the figures given here are different - only 8 aircraft fully unrecoverable:

It specifically says the UAVs are recoverable.

Illegal.existence said...

lankapura, the above figures are from Athas's situation report. He distinguishes between the "damaged" and "destroyed" aircraft as


*Two Blue Horizon UAVs.
*One Mi-17
*Four PT-6s
*One Beechcraft
*One K-8
*One Mil Mi-24


*One UAV
*Three PT-6s
*Five K-8s
*Four Siais
*One Mil Mi-24

Interestingly, neither he, nor defensewire mentions the Bell 206 trainer which the MoD admits was destroyed. So which is the correct report?

Illegal.existence said...

jiffy, athas also says the attack was worse than Katunayake. So, so very moronic. I wouldn't really trust that guy's reporting too much.

jiffy said...

yeah illegal, im sure he's not certain either. it would be nice though to get some 'straight info' about this blue on blue incident. i guess there's sensitivities surrounding that..

jiffy said...

illegal: i presume he's saying katunayake was worse because of the total cost of lost aircraft? but how is that possible?? im curious why he said that too.

Jambudipa said...

LTTE were inside the camp for nearly 6 hours armed to the teeth. All aircraft were either sitting next to the runway or inside soft skinned hangars. There is no point living in denial but accept most aircraft may have been put out of action.

Mr. Rambukwella in a recent interview claimed 6 insiders are being interrogated for assisting and providing info to LTTE. This is the sad truth. As a country we are soft on the corrupt criminals. The LTTE cannot be beaten with this sort of laid back liberal culture. Its well known how inside help was given to LTTE when EP and Mullativu bases were overrun. More recent examples I can think of;

- Assassination attempt on the army commander based on inside help.
- A captain at Trinco base giving the wrong co-ords for MBRL launchers.
- The Artillery barrage just as the Army Commander was about to land at Jaffna.
- The new head of Mechanical Armour Division based in Jaffna receiving injuries from artillery fire directed from inside information.

Only this week the BIA Aviation Deputy Chief was caught receiving a bribe. Another massive vehicle duty scam reported from the Colombo port. If security of economically most important ports can be breeched for few hundred sterling pounds, imagine what LTTE can do if they spend a few thousands. They are on record trying to bribe several UNP members for $100,000 each and US undercover FBI Agents $1 Million.

There is really nothing to lose by giving harsher punishments than already given to criminals.

Renegade! said...

Are we confused or what?defencewire/guys can u please shed some light on the actual losses?apparently the government doesn't feel like including the UAV's in the 'loss' list..

Another interesting fact is,in an earlier thread,goldeneagle,i believe said in response to my request on whether we have received the Blue horizon-2 UAV's from illegal.existence confirms that we have indeed lost 2 Blue horizon UAV's(iqbal athas's sitrep also confirms this fact)
Moreover.d.b.s jeyaraj has indicated in THE NATION paper that we operate RQ-2 Pioneer UAV'S as well..can this be confirmed?

So,basically what this means(if i'm correct,is that we WERE operating the following make/model of israeli-built UAV'S?

Hopefully,some light could be shed on this..By the way,how much would a US-bult PREDATOR uav cost us,& will the US sell them to us?

tangara said...

My guess,

LTTE is working around the clock to knock out the SLN vessels...

Unlike us , LTTE not wait for the most opportune moment...

They now see a window of oppurtunity to take on the SLN..

Another commando raid may be around the corner...This time it is going to be the SLN...

Once they knocked off our SLAF and SLN assests..It will be a walk over for their black tigers on our FDL's..

Please be ready...

Unknown said...


Sorry if this is out of the topic, I posted on the Chinese weapons story tread but there was not reply.

About the NVGs used by the tigers at Apur. Any news on them? Have tried to trace them to a manufacture or sales lot?

With regard to the Aircrafts lost,
Was the destroyed Mi-24 one the upgraded (night attack) helicopters?

And were the (if we had them) Blue Horizon UAVs destroyed?

With regard to our AD capability, I read that the 40mm bofors L/60 Jammed its ammo feeding clip!! We really should have better training for the Air Forces Ground units (Regimental & Leadership) and our boys (all three forces and cops) have shown poor AA fire discipline.

And the targeting radar for the gun didn’t work(the same artical said).
This is why I believe that radar alone cannot be tasked to lay the AA guns, we must have IR/Thermal day/night sights to work with.

We need to equip our birds with IFF systems and teach (& equip) ground units, especially AA crews on IFF and have a well coordinated AD network.

Defencewire said...

We suspect they have acquired a cheap pilot night vision system, maybe also of Chinese make. we are not aware of a bofos jamming incident. The planes made one bombing run after LTTE secured area with hangars. They escaped all forms of resistance because of this. One gravity bomb they dropped killed a herd of buffaloes.
I don't know what the confusion is. Perhaps you should believe every word says.
illegal existence.
We don't have any information of a Bell 206 pilot trainer being destroyed.
we got the blue horizon UAVs to test before purchase. They were brand new. Others in service included RQ-2 Pioneers.

Renegade! said...

Thanks,defencewire.I understand you don't want to go into specifics like how many/type of UAV'S that were in our fleet..Do we have to pay for the 2 Blue horizon UAV's,even if the israeli's provided them on a no-obligation basis?

Renegade! said...

According to d.b.s jeyaraj of the NATION paper,there were two 40mm AAA & two 23mm AAA at the airbase,at the time of attack.Accordinfg to my understanding the 40mm gun is an antique BOFORS L/60 model provided by india & the 23mm gun is an israeli-built TCM-20AAA.plese correct me if i'm wrong..Guys,do we operate any ZSU-23-2/4's,BY THE WAY?

onecountry said...

It looks like LTTE has maps of our bases including the minefields surround them. It is of utmost importance that SLA/SLAF/SLN relocate those mines to nullify old maps which are in LTTE hands.

Unknown said...

Thanks defencewire,

Since the tiger bomb killed buffalos, the tigers can pain little cows on their fuselage ! to show their kills. Lol,

but the combined Air/SOF type attack is no Joke.

rifard ,

The TAM-20 use 2x 20mm cannons,

I saw them on display at the Air Force 50th Anniversary.

I think the SLAF had ZU-23-2 AAA for some time now, It would be better if we could have an automated (non manual) operations system with a IR gunners sight for the ZU-23-2 (like the one Poland offers). They have also added two IglaS MANPADS to it making it a low cost yet potent system.

A Polish upgraded ZU-23-2 ;

The ZU-23-4 is a fearsome SPAAG system; even the Israeli pilots hated them during their wars. It has 4x 23mm cannons and is radar guided.

They are still in use even in India (now been replaced by the Tunguska M1 SPAAG) Many countries have upgraded them and kept the Shilkas’ in service.


As for the 40mm L/60, yes it’s old, but if used well by a well trained crew it can still be deadly. She can also be used in Ground attack role.
A large number of countries still use the ol faithful 40mm AAA. If we had the 3P ammo and FC upgrade for them they would work well. But 40mm we got are not the original British or Swedish made ones that we use, I think we use the Indian made ones

NOLTTE=Peace said...

Can I make a small request here guys...

My request from everyone who publish here is not to reveal anything relating to SL defence forces that is not in the public domain.

This forum should not be a fishing ground for any kind of such information that would aid the enemy.

(mentioned the same in the forum too)

hemantha said...

I second the Noltte's request.

Unknown said...

rightly said Notlle=peace

tangara said...

Remember not to follow handles like specialforces @ lankanewspapers in divuludging everything from operational plans to weapons system..

Aren't we diggin our own grave by disclosing everything...?

For the LTTE it is hard for them to gain inside info. when they are being caught in some instances of spying..

Let them spy rather than we provide everything...

About Us

We are a Non-Political Group of Defence Experts Sharing Our Knowledge For the Good Of Our Country. This is a Voluntary Effort. We Report to No-one But You.

Contact US

You can contact us by e-mail on and on


DefenceWire or its editors are not responsible for the opinions expressed by the contributors to this website.