The only Iranian AWACS-aircraft collied in mid-air on Tuesday. The accident took place on the event of the Iranian president statement «Our armed forces would chop off the hands of any power daring to attack Iran».
Two air force jets collided in mid-air. One was Iran’s only airborne warning and control system AWACS for coordinating long-distance aerial operations.
The proud military parade, which included a march-past, a line of Shehab-3 missiles and an air force fly-past, was planned to give Ahmadinejad a dazzling send-off for New York and add steel to his UN Assembly speech Wednesday.
Dubbed «Simorgh» the AWACS’ appearance, escorted by fighter jets, was to have been the climax for the Iranian Air force’s fly-past over the parade. Instead, it collided with one of escorting planes, a US-made F-5E, and both crashed to the ground in flames. All seven crewmen were killed.
The only AWACS of the Iranian Air Force went into service in April 2008. It was a renovated version of the Russian Ilyushin 76, part of Saddam Hussein’s air force before it was transferred to Iran in 1991 during the first Gulf War.
The loss of this airborne control system has left Iran’s air force and air and missile defenses without “electronic eyes” for surveillance of the skies around its borders.
Source: DEBKAfile Exclusive Report