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Red Storm Rising


Kensuke
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The Red Storm scenario pre-supposes some sort of planning and shifting of forces before the outbreak of hostilities. Nothing was going on in the Pacific. I don't think Clancy was wrong in giving the Soviet Naval Aviation a huge advantage if taken in that context. They were fighting a one front war (Iceland being taken out early on helped). In any event, it was a good representation of the nightmare scenario that spurred on AEGIS development.

 

I just re-read the chapter where it describes the first engagement, and the raid against the Nimitz CVBG consisted of 70 Backfires firing AS-6. Many of these were taken out on the ground later in the book by SSN's firing Tomahawks. Major cruiser escorts consisted of Ticonderoga, California, and Virginia. The book was written before the first Burke was built.

 

In all, for book written in 1986 it was pretty good and seems to have aged well. Though rumor has it that many of the best parts were envisioned by Larry Bond (designer of Harpoon and a writer in his own right).

 

The MAJOR thing that really jumped out at me as totally implausible was the pre-emptive attack near the beginning using "F-19 Ghostriders". That just seemed like a cheap way of explaining how NATO could have an even footing on the ground as well as air superiority in Europe.

 

- John

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The MAJOR thing that really jumped out at me as totally implausible was the pre-emptive attack near the beginning using "F-19 Ghostriders". That just seemed like a cheap way of explaining how NATO could have an even footing on the ground as well as air superiority in Europe.

 

I don't find that completely implausible, it's been speculated that the F-117 could have carried sidewinders for just such a mission.

 

What i find implausible is that after hostilities have started there's this game of 'chicken' going on in the air between nato and the sovs at the same time - surely both sides would be outright attacking by that time. Tanks were rolling by that point, at least.

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And the East Germans convincing the Sovs not to use chemical weapons....yeah right.

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And the East Germans convincing the Sovs not to use chemical weapons....yeah right.

 

Actually, I don't think this is at all that far fetched. The basic point is true -- because of prevailing wind patterns, massive use of chemical weapons by the Soviets would have crippled East Germany and Czechoslovakia no matter the outcome of the war. In addition to short term deaths from exposure, their agriculture would have been wrecked and their water supplies tainted. Given that the Warsaw Pact was not quite as monolithic as people tend to think about it, it is plausible (if not likely) that Honecker or his ilk would have (who would have been none too pleased about the prospect of war to begin with) laid this down as a pre-req for their participation.

 

Also, I think that the "F-19 Ghostrider" was a light bomber in the book, not a fighter, and performed missions similar to those performed by the F-117 in real life.

 

Pat

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in the book the F-19 frisbee was essentially a fighterbomber, like an A-7 or similar aircraft with L/O

It could carry all manner of A2G and AIM-9's, but was only stealth from top-down and thus had to fly NOE.

 

Over all given when the book was written it was pretty accurate given what we know.

 

my personaly favourite it the MiG-29's flying from norwat to iceland, but then back then we thought the MiG-29 was the greatest thing since sliced bread...

 

On the whole the book was pretty good actually, easily the best clancy ever wrote.

but it comes with a lot of clancy provisions of '*'...

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The F19 in the book (1986) and the game (1987), F19 Stealth Fighter by Microprose, are the same.

The description is a match, the missions are a match, the only difference being the game is a single pilot aircraft and the book has it carrying a WSO.

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Actually, I don't think this is at all that far fetched. The basic point is true -- because of prevailing wind patterns, massive use of chemical weapons by the Soviets would have crippled East Germany and Czechoslovakia no matter the outcome of the war. In addition to short term deaths from exposure, their agriculture would have been wrecked and their water supplies tainted. Given that the Warsaw Pact was not quite as monolithic as people tend to think about it, it is plausible (if not likely) that Honecker or his ilk would have (who would have been none too pleased about the prospect of war to begin with) laid this down as a pre-req for their participation.

 

Also, I think that the "F-19 Ghostrider" was a light bomber in the book, not a fighter, and performed missions similar to those performed by the F-117 in real life.

 

Pat

 

Good point about massive use but surely limited use on specific targets (headquarters, ports, airfields) the East Germans couldn't have argued against?

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I read the book back in the day (it cost me a night's sleep; I couldn't put it down and finished at dawn. Fortunately, my job allowed me to nap during the day :) ) Considering what I was aware of, it reflected the times very neatly. As for the "F-19", Clancy's version fit the rumors of the "stealth" fighter neatly. There were scale models of the "stealth" aircraft based on the rumors, and one looked very much like the "Frisbee." In fact, when the F-117 was revealed, it looked positively clunky compared to the visualizations.

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I think Bill Gunston suggested in one book that if you started with F111 and continued the century series of designations, you would have F112 Tomcat, F113 Eagle, F114 Falcon, F115 (YF17, competitor to F16 in contest) F116 Hornet, and the F19 would be F117. Of course thats only a complete coincidence. :)

 

I think some of the Soviet types under covert evaluation got F11x numbers.

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my personaly favourite it the MiG-29's flying from norwat to iceland, but then back then we thought the MiG-29 was the greatest thing since sliced bread...

 

Is it possible MiG-29 was sometimes mistaken with Su-27? Su's over Iceland are much more plausible ;)

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As for the aircraft, I think the models didnt look entirely different to the early demonstator 'Have Blue'. It was ironic that the model that looked most like the F117 was a proposed 'yak' stealth fighter.....

 

Wasn't Have Blue in shape similar to 117 just smaller and with more angled wings?

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Yes thats true they were. Mind you there is quite a gap between F107 and F111, did they use those designations up?

 

I was reading an interesting book on Area 51 that suggested one US General died whilst flying a Mig23. Most of the conspiracy pundits are convinced he died testing a flying Saucer. :)

 

Yes, Have Blue I think had the same basic configuration, but similar to the F19 model it had inward canted rudders. Sideways on it looked similar to F19l but with a shorter nose as I recall.

 

Baugher has the following:

 

F-108 Rapier; http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f108.html

F-109 ???: http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f109.html (ie not used)

F-110 Spectre: http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f4_7.html (i.e. became the F-4C Phantom II)

 

Only one gap, then.

 

David

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Baugher has the following:

 

F-108 Rapier; http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f108.html

F-109 ???: http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f109.html (ie not used)

F-110 Spectre: http://home.att.net/~jbaugher1/f4_7.html (i.e. became the F-4C Phantom II)

 

Only one gap, then.

 

David

 

F-107 "Ultra Sabre" - North American:

 

Originaly designated F-110B.

An all-weather FB-verison of the F-100

Lost out to the F-105.

 

http://avia.russian.ee/air/usa/na_f-107.php

 

As far as the F-11X it's something like this (if one is to trust the RUMINT):

 

YF-110B-D - MiG-21 in various forms

YF-112 - Su-22 or MiG-19

YF-113A - MiG-17F

YF-113B - MiG-23BN

YF-113C - J-5

YF-113E - MiG-23MS

YF-114C - MiG-17F

YF-114D - MiG-17PF

YF-116 - MiG-25

YF-117D - TACIT BLUE

YF-118 - MiG-29

Edited by Olof Larsson
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Is it possible MiG-29 was sometimes mistaken with Su-27? Su's over Iceland are much more plausible ;)

 

He mentions in the book that the Su-27, MiG-29, and MiG-25/31 are the only ones that can make the trek. I'm not sure about the last one, but I think the second one would run out of fuel before sighting the coast. More than likely the -29's capabilities were overestimated. I seem to recall in actuality it has pretty short legs (sorter than the F-16).

 

Also, Janes had an entry on the F-19 circa 1986 that showed a design more similar to the infamous Testor's model kit. That's probably where the inspiration for that scene came from. Though, in truth, the design for the F-117A was finalized as early as 1983. There simply wasn't enough computer horsepower available to make the curved surfaces in that fantasy design.

 

- John

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The worst thing you can say about it is that it remains the strongest novel of what WW3 would look like from the big picture, and its still a fun read. I think Team Yankee and Sword point are more accurate though.

 

Team Yankee was set in the scenario posited by the book WWIII:1984 by British general Sir John Hackett. Hackett's book (an illustrated novel, BTW) set the conflict in the mid-1980s. A decent read, though somewhat choppy.

Edited by shep854
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I think some of the Soviet types under covert evaluation got F11x numbers.

 

Out in detail recently, courtesy of Andreas Parsch at http://www.designation-systems.net/usmilav...signations.html and the designation-systems yahoogroup:

  • YF-110B = MiG-21F-13 "Fishbed-C"
  • YF-110C = MiG-21 "Fishbed" variant; information on the specific subtype not yet available (conflicting reports from the pilots - it _was_ a long time ago ;-)! )
  • YF-110D MiG-21 "Fishbed" variant; information on the specific subtype not yet available (see -110C)
  • YF-113A MiG-17F "Fresco-C" used in HAVE DRILL program
  • YF-113B MiG-23BN "Flogger-F"
  • YF-113C MiG-17F (actually a Chinese-built J-5) "Fresco-C" usedin HAVE PRIVILEGE program
  • YF-113E MiG-23MS "Flogger-E"
  • YF-114C MiG-17F "Fresco-C" (incl. the one used in the HAVE FERRY program)
  • YF-114D MiG-17PF "Fresco-D"

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He mentions in the book that the Su-27, MiG-29, and MiG-25/31 are the only ones that can make the trek. I'm not sure about the last one, but I think the second one would run out of fuel before sighting the coast. More than likely the -29's capabilities were overestimated. I seem to recall in actuality it has pretty short legs (sorter than the F-16).

 

The MiG-29S Fulcrum C has a ferry-range of 2900km (or so I think),

which is quite sufficient for a one-way trip from Murmansk to Iceland.

The basic MiG-29 is another matter though.

 

The MiG-31 has a ferry-range of 3300km, so that shouldn't be a problem,

but the MiG-31's were PVO-birds, and therefore unlikely to leave Russia in a WW3,

unless of-course, they would intercept SAC-bombers from Iceland.

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In fact a combnation of MiG-31 and Su-27 would be a far more better on Iceland than just the "simple" MiG-29 - and as this station would be a "far garrison" these two planes would provide much better "stand-alone" capability. And adding them 1-2 A-50 Mainstays would be even better. Possibly connect that with S-300 PM... and the B-52s are all "dead meat" withy no chance of survive such a battle (please note that Su-27, MiG-31, A-50 and S-300 are all systems of the PVO Strany, well integrated and commanded within the same automated control systems, thus making a little harder structure to break and fight against than the novel-designed combination of MiG-29 from Frontal Aviation and Buk (SA-11) from Air Defence Forcef of the Ground Forces...).

 

The battles in Germany are not too well "designed" and carried out - why the hell the whole WGF would attack on Hannover only? No attack through Hof to the south, combined with offensive from Czechoslovakia? Use of Operational-Manoeuver Group is also author's BS, as he possibly haven't read the "Red Armour: a study of Soviet Mechanized forces concept" book, by Richard Simpkin - based on Soviet doctrine and training schemes. The Front-level OMG (as shown in the book) could simply not wait until any form of "Moscow approval" as it is a pure nonsense that allows the author to bring in German reinforcements into play... but in fact such an OMG would run into gap at the first confirmation of achieving the breakthrough - i.e. within less than 1 hour (what is later coorrectly shown in case of the armoured division led by general Alekseyev IIRC). Thus there would merely be any time to react... and the West germans would have to fight a meetiing engagement with a force of some 1 brigade against the whole division.

 

Backfires against CVNBG - well, well... assuming that they would have their in-flight refuelling capability renewed (they had their probes removed) and crews underwent appropriate training, the Tu-22M2 could carry at the given distance at leas 2 AS-4/Kh-22 missiles (not AS-6; the AS-6/KSR-15 was a smaller version to be carried by Tu-16 K-26 bomber), or even 3 of them (each one weighting some 6 tonnes, total of 18 tonnes, while max load of Tu-22M2 was 21 tonnes) => start with 3 missiles but less fuel, the up-fuel in air somewhere near Murmansk and then - tally ho! The Tu-22M3 could easily carry 3 missiles, wityh max payload being 24 tonnes of ordnance. With 70 bombers in the attack this gives us some 140 (210 at most) missiles fired upon the CVNBG - something that is much harder to fight against...

Also the Vulcan-phalanx is something not too well suited to fight against so huge and fast (max speed of AS-4 is some 4,5 Ma), diving from high altitude (max distance is achieved on altitude of some 27 km, near max altitude of Standard missile... another problem to solve...)... thus out of 5 missiles targeted on Nimitz possibly all 5 would have hit her... and in case of 2 or 3 times more missiles there would be even more hits on each carrier. I doubt if Nimitz or Saratoga could survive some 10 hits each of beasts like AS-4 with at least 750 kg warhead... For Ticonderoga 1-2 such hits would be enough to at least cripple her completely if not sink her within minutes.

 

Also I wonder why the Soviets didn't attacked Denmark - that would not only detract some NATO forces to defend this country, but in case of succes (quite likely IMHO) would offer quite nice place for Soviet fighters covering deep air strikes on NATO rear areas, as well as mid-point bases for damaged strike planes returning from missions. Some 1-2 regts of Su-27 and maybe another 1-2 of MiG-23MLD/P from PVO based in Denmark would perform much better than based rearward in Baltic republics. Etc., etc.

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In fact a combnation of MiG-31 and Su-27 would be a far more better on Iceland than just the "simple" MiG-29 - and as this station would be a "far garrison" these two planes would provide much better "stand-alone" capability. And adding them 1-2 A-50 Mainstays would be even better. Possibly connect that with S-300 PM... and the B-52s are all "dead meat" withy no chance of survive such a battle (please note that Su-27, MiG-31, A-50 and S-300 are all systems of the PVO Strany, well integrated and commanded within the same automated control systems, thus making a little harder structure to break and fight against than the novel-designed combination of MiG-29 from Frontal Aviation and Buk (SA-11) from Air Defence Forcef of the Ground Forces...).

 

But could the USSR spare the few A-50's that they had.

MiG-31's would be one thing, but they had how many A-50's? 10?

 

Backfires against CVNBG - well, well... assuming that they would have their in-flight refuelling capability renewed (they had their probes removed) and crews underwent appropriate training, the Tu-22M2 could carry at the given distance at leas 2 AS-4/Kh-22 missiles (not AS-6; the AS-6/KSR-15 was a smaller version to be carried by Tu-16 K-26 bomber), or even 3 of them (each one weighting some 6 tonnes, total of 18 tonnes, while max load of Tu-22M2 was 21 tonnes) => start with 3 missiles but less fuel, the up-fuel in air somewhere near Murmansk and then - tally ho! The Tu-22M3 could easily carry 3 missiles, wityh max payload being 24 tonnes of ordnance. With 70 bombers in the attack this gives us some 140 (210 at most) missiles fired upon the CVNBG - something that is much harder to fight against...

 

How many tankers would be required to get 70 Backfires, with 3 Kh-22 apiece

(plus a bunch of Badgers as well if I recall it correctly)

from Murmansk, to the middle of the Atlantic and back?

How many tankers could the USSR spare and deploy in time?

 

Also I wonder why the Soviets didn't attacked Denmark - that would not only detract some NATO forces to defend this country, but in case of succes (quite likely IMHO) would offer quite nice place for Soviet fighters covering deep air strikes on NATO rear areas, as well as mid-point bases for damaged strike planes returning from missions. Some 1-2 regts of Su-27 and maybe another 1-2 of MiG-23MLD/P from PVO based in Denmark would perform much better than based rearward in Baltic republics. Etc., etc.

 

How would they take Denmark?

By sea and/or by air?

Did the WARPAC really have the air and amphibious capacity to launch,

say a corp-level attack on Denmark?

Could they secure air-superiority over Denmark,

that far away from their bases and ground-radar.

How long would it take to bring in and get 2-4 regiments of fighters,

mobile ground-radar, SAM's, AAA etc. operational?

 

Either way, having a considerable part of your best fighters

sitting exposed in Denmark

(withing striking distance from Sweden, Norway, UK, carriers from the sea and France)

doesn't seem like a very good idea to me.

Not when those fighters might be better served, trying to support the Red Army,

by providing the frontal aviation with BWR-fighters that could hold their own VWR.

 

WW3 would probably be a fastmoving war, and trying to take Denmark be sea and/or,

to redeploy aircrafts there, simply seems like an unecessary slow and risky mission,

if your armour will either win and be there soon enough,

or lose, in which case your troops in Denmark will be lost.

 

Better to use the fighters to try to rule the sky over the front

and use the VDV and naval-infantry to speed the advance up.

 

Sending troops and fighters to Iceland is one thing.

It's fairly small operation with strategic effects.

Going for Denmark is rather an all in, with the bulk of your cargoplanes in the pot

were a win. might at best give you operational effects.

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No they were definately, 100% MiG-29's in the book, i actually read it again about a month ago (at least 3/4 til the first rain of the wet destroyed the copy i've had since i was 19)

They actually mention the supposed long legs of the Fulcrum...

 

 

As for denmark, a small invasion force was repelled by danish and west german fast patrol craft, but were savaged in the process.

 

As for bombing school children as a pretext to war, there is generally a lot of weight given to the conspiracy theory the kremlin (or at least the FSB/ex-KGB elements) were behind the moscow apartment bombings, that said, it doesn't seem that implausible, even if not realistic...

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