UPDATE: another alternative view. CLICK HERE, put your browser i full screen mode and THEN clik “Load”. Yeh, it’s a bit jerkier and more apparently pixelated, but it’s still cool.

N.B.—if for some reason the video below doesn’t load, try this link to a posting of it at my old twc site.

I don’t care if this doesn’t perfectly fit in my center column. Can’t stop the grins, all the way through this!

(Of course, I do have to wonder what the cryptic word “KANKE” at the end of the vodeo means… “Kanke is a place in Ranchi , Jharkhand , India ; and is the location of one of the largest mental asylums in the country.” *LOL* :-))

h.t. Jerry Pournelle’s Chaos Manor Musings

Update: A couple of folks have mentioned/asked about the music. Try “Era: the Mass”–The Champions

The Mass

The Mass

14 Replies to “Fly!

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  4. Shown in a late Bush War (1966-1989) low visibility scheme these SAAF Mirage F1AZs were used in combat in Angola between 1978 and 1989. Due to economic sanctions, SAAF limited its exposure to aircraft losses by flying very low and fast and only gaining altitude while engaging the target. Sanctions also prevented SAAF from acquiring a recon variant of the plane so SAAF modifications were made yielding the nose camera footage seen.

    In 1978, the F1’s were deployed to the Operational area. On 14 March 1979, the legendary Capt Tinkie Jones in an F1, became the first 3rd Squadron pilot since WWII to fire his guns in anger, himself being a WWII veteran. Maj. Johann Rankin scored the first SAAF victory since WWII, when on 6 November 1981 he shot down a Mig 21, followed by a 2nd Mig 21 on 5 October 1982. Both versions of F1’s (F1AZ ground attack and F1CZ fighters)were involved in frequent combat missions during the Bush War, mostly in ground support strike roles. The aircraft were irreplaceble under the international sanctions, and were not often risked against numerically superior Mig 21’s and Mig 23’s, operating near home bases, and under one of the most sophisticated Eastern Bloc radar, early warning and airdefence umbrellas of the day. No F1 was lost in aircombat, and only 1 shot down by a SAM SA-9 during the 10 year deployment. Sanctions forced SA to develop its own smart weapons, and an early precision weapon was used to take out the Cuito Cuanevale Bridge late in the war.

  5. The Mirages shown are French F1b’s stationed in Chad. The helicopters in question are Puma’s, but again they are French! South Africa retired their F1’s in 1997, so please no need to pass the video footage on as SAAF.

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