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    Iranian F-14s in Retrospect
    MigBuster
    By MigBuster,
        Back in 2004 a book was released by Osprey that likely caused a few (thousand) Internet forum arguments……………...Iranian F-14 Tomcat units in combat by Tom Cooper and Farzad Bishop. The information in the book shattered the typical Western held views and perception of what really might have happened during the eight-year Iran Vs Iraq conflict in the 1980s. The book is probably owned by most Tomcat fans out there and even was referred to positively by both Dave Baranek and his guest Iranian former F-14 pilot (Mikey) in Episode 5 of the Tomcast on YouTube.   But what was the controversy all about and how accurate was the information presented? After all information is usually the first casualty of war and it usually takes decades afterwards to even start scratching the surface.   Lack of Information Osprey books are normally very well researched using the best information available that they can get released into the public domain. That information can often be cross checked especially in the US where more of this information is available. The problem with the Iran/ Iraq conflict is that most of the official Iraq war records seems to have been lost during the constant state of conflict there. Likewise getting credible information from Iran also involves contacting those who have to remain anonymous due to such things as political persecution and death threats. (Even if they live outside of Iran)   Trust Today Tom Cooper is probably one of the top authorities on Middle Eastern Combat having published many books with leading Historians….. but this book was one of his first and it had listed almost no source references!  You basically had to put trust that Osprey had actually had a look at where this information was coming from.   What gets your backs up! The book is only written from an Iranian point of view and thus, to most of us that does not mean you can dismiss it but you need to be weary that there is always more than one side to every story. We also have to accept that the information on the conflict was still not great at this point in time and therefore unlike most Osprey books you had to accept that the information was raw and a higher percentage of it was likely wrong. For an example of the hodgepodge of data, in the chapter “The Fog of Disinformation” it states:  “It remains unclear exactly how many air-to air kills were scored by IRIAF F-14s between 7 Sept 1980 and 7 July 1988”   It then tells us that a Post war Iranian conference concluded that a total of 71 x AIM-54s had been fired with a further 10 lost (Due to crashes/defection etc) The conference also determined the F-14 had a total of 30 x confirmed kills with 16 of those confirmed AIM-54 kills. The author then states that they have further evidence for 130 confirmed kills total including 40 with the AIM-54. Then if we move to the Appendices, it lists another figure - around 58 “confirmed kills” with the AIM-54 and around 159 total confirmed kills. [more on that later]   So then the hodgepodge of information gives a total that might be in the range of 30 to 159 for total claims, and AIM-54 claims might range from 16 to 58 [okay]   Accuracy The book was the first time most found out that perhaps the F-14s were used in combat and that stories of the US sabotaging all the missiles etc were not completely true. This is one thing in the book at least that is backed up in some other interviews like here:   What is the biggest myth about the Iranian F-14s?   “The most tiresome is that the departing US personnel stationed in Iran managed to sabotage Iranian F-14 radar, electronics and Phoenix missiles before leaving Iran in the ensuing days after the 1979 revolution. Let me tell you that I was a young officer during those days at Esfahan Khatami air base. Our wing commanders and senior officers made sure this never happened. We lined up departing American personnel before boarding their TWA aircraft and inspected them all.   From: F-14 Tomcat pilot Col. Fereydoun A. Mazandarani (rtd)       The Appendices and the art of the Kill Although there is probably a lot of useful information in the book the one area that always seems a tad flaky was the Appendices which lists 159 confirmed kills in total for the Iranian F-14A. It does at least list some sources for the information. What we can do is take information released more recently (including newer text from T Cooper) from the Iraqi side and see what has changed and if it can be matched up in anyway to these confirmed kills.     In particular          Iraqi Mirages in Combat (2018, Miguel Garcia, Independent)          Iraqi Mirages (2019, Tom Cooper & Milos Sipos, Helion)             A confirmed kill is not a confirmed Kill In the history of aerial warfare, the difference between confirmed kills stated by one side only and the real actual kills has been like the difference between Jupiter and the Sun! In fact, ridiculous claims are even partly to blame for major blunders such as the USAAF sending in unescorted bombers for so long over Germany in 1943 to their inevitable slaughter. After all, why do you need escort fighters if your bomber crews claims show they have already shot down the entire Luftwaffe! A good airforce should only claim a confirmed kill based on multiple criteria – even gun camera film in the past has not been enough evidence of an actual shootdown. Pilots in the stress of combat are extremely bad eyewitnesses and here we have a conflict where pilots are firing missiles BVR. One explosion in the distance or a radar blip disappearing are not evidence of an actual shootdown. So, a “confirmed kill” by one side is usually better described as a “Claim” instead.   33 claims on Mirage F1s………. hmm          That’s right, the Appendices in the book list 33 F-14A “confirmed kills” (claims) over Mirage F1s.          (Garcia M) only lists a total of 32 Mirages lost over the period to all causes!          Out of that, only 2 of those dates match any of those 33 events. [what!]          So is that 2 actual losses only out of 33 claims listed!! [Oh dear].     But wait you say that independent book from Garcia M cannot be much use, can it? Well, the thing is the 2019 (T Cooper / Sipos) book actually matches the information in the (Garcia M) book closely and almost disowns the 2004 data like a child that doesn’t meet its ideals. The (T Cooper / Sipos) book does mention another 2 of the events out of the list of 33 but in both cases states the missiles fired by the F-14 missed the Mirages. So where does the figure of 33 comes from? - Is it coincidence that the total number of Mirage F1 losses (Garcia M) to all causes comes to about 32 for that period??     Better information? Either way both of the newer books provide information that Iranian F-14As may have shot down 7 or 8 Mirage F1s during the conflict [Yes, slightly less than 33]. Likewise, they also show that Mirage F1s may have shot down 4 x F-14As (a 5th F-14A was hit but flew back to base) Is that accurate? – only time will tell but at least the numbers are going in the right direction [down]   Other things noted in the 2004 book are, the Appendices also show most of the Sidewinders and Sparrows used as the type AIM-9P and AIM-7E-4. The more recent information suggests that Iran only had the AIM-9J and AIM-7E-2 and were essentially using ones supplied for their F-4s which had degraded capability because of it.   Also, on page 76 the 2004 book tells us (from the Iranian side) that Iraq received Super 530D and Magic 2 missiles. The recent information in both newer books suggest Iraq only received Magic 1 and Super 530F missiles and nearly all their claims were using the Super 530F.   So, perhaps some progress has been made in the past 2 decades because instead of these authors shouting at people on internet forums (yes, some did) there is maybe a bit more calm and willingness to look at both sides and the actual data available. The final word on the book is that its real value was not only to highlight that the conflict was very different to published stories about it at the time, but also may have helped inspire those more passionate to get out there and start digging for better information.                     Sources ·         Iraqi Mirages in Combat (2018, Garcia M, Independent) ·         Iraqi Mirage (2019, Cooper T, Sipos M, Helion) ·         Iranian F-14 Tomcat Units in combat (2004, Cooper T, Bishop F, Osprey) ·         Air Combat Memoirs of the Iranian Air Force Pilots (2015, Ryan, K, Bishop F, Independent) ·         Schweinfurt-Regensburg 1943 (2020, Marshall Michel III, Osprey)   The Tomcast Episode 5: Iranian F-14s (2020, Baranek, Online):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Q5Y_ai4s2Y   Interview with Fereydoun Mazandarani (2020, Hushkit, Online): https://hushkit.net/2020/04/07/interview-with-the-greatest-living-fighter-ace-f-14-tomcat-pilot-col-rtd-fereydoun-a-mazandarani/

    2021 Sturmovik Year in Review
    76.IAP-Blackbird
    By 76.IAP-Blackbird,
    Dear Friends,   I wanted to post this before the end of the year, but our schedule was too intense and time was short. I also wanted to post it during our New Year’s holiday break, but as was trying to finish this up, I was forced to do battle with a moderate form of COVID. Luckily, after a few really annoying days I am able to function again and get back to our yearly round up. So, without any further delay here it is, finally.   This was a very hard year for us, even more so than 2020 thanks to the prolonged pandemic and lingering half-open, half-closed nature of major cities and office environment coupled with our busy development schedule. In addition, we had several team members get sick and require time off, plus family members who got sick needed the attention of team members to aid in recovery. Also, doing remote work, which can have advantages, is not always ideal for our development work. Our office environment has always been one of our strengths where problems and discoveries can be easily shared and discussed much quicker and focus can be better maintained. Regardless we have continued our work and even with some aircraft delayed, our overall timeline for Battle of Normandy is on track. With each new product, we set more ambitious goals for ourselves and keep pushing what we are capable of as a team. Sometimes, these goals are easily reached and sometimes not. We promise to keep pushing in 2022 and beyond.   Let’s take a look at what we accomplished in 2021 shall we.   Q1   2021 started off promising with worldwide vaccination drives and we all thought it would allow us to get back to a normal work environment and I could once again travel to Moscow to meet with the team in person. That didn’t really happen as planned, but work on IL-2 continued and we were able to do the following in Q1.   In February we released update 4.506. Highlights include:     Hide contents In February we released update 4.506. Highlights include:   - German fighter/bomber Fw 190 A-6 is now available to all Battle of Normandy owners - Fw 190 A-6 added to Rhineland Career mode (to the 1st and 2nd chapters to joinable squadrons III./JG 11, I./JG 26 and II./JG 26 and to all chapters to AI squadrons III./KG 51 and NSGr. 20) - Bf 109 E-7 got 4K quality external textures by Martin =ICDP= Catney - New truck variations (which look exactly like the regular ones) that are loaded with ammo and explode when attacked in a spectacular way - Many cockpit texture improvements by Chiawei =Oyster_KAI= Liang
    - AI improvements - Improved explosion effects          Q2   The second quarter was a busy one for Sturmovik as we released two major updates - 4.601 in April and 4.602 in June. These updates brought several new planes and vehicles to BON and Flying Circus and even brought our first Collector Vehicle to market!   Some highlights from 4.601 and 4.602 include:     Reveal hidden contents                         Q3   Autumn 2021 saw two more updates that really boosted Flying Circus II content with 3 new planes and we released our mobile German Flak half-track. If you look through the highlights below, you’ll notice a lot of rather small, but important changes. Such details are important for our sim, but they take time and require research. Also notice our unique pilot fatigue modeling that makes dogfights and combat feel more real and less superhuman. Imagine being a young kid flying one of these machines and the physicality it took to be successful as a fighter pilot. It wasn’t always just about the performance of the aircraft like we seem to focus on in the sim. The human factor played a larger role in real life.   4.603 and 4.604     Reveal hidden contents                     Q4   The push was on to finish the year strong even though our fabulous twin-engine aircraft for Normandy had developed slower than planned. So, we focused on adding the AQMG and New Clouds to IL-2 as fast as we could. Update 4.605 came in October and updates 4.701 and 4.702 hit in December wrapping up the year.   Updates 4.605, 4.701 and 4.702 includes these great additions and much more.     Reveal hidden contents                       Special Thanks   As is always the case, we cannot do what we do without the support of talent individuals that help us improve the simulation. Sometimes they help in small ways and sometimes in big ways, but it all adds up to make users enjoy Sturmovik that much more. This is in incomplete list and I’m likely to forget someone, but we want to say special thanks to ICDP, Raptorattacker, LukeFF, SYN_Vander, Jaegermeister, Oyster_Kai, Requiem, SYN_Haashashin, Pat_Wilson, MisterSmith, ShamrockFive, Gambit21, Haluter, BlackHellHound1, Rowdyb00t, SolidKreate, ROEN911, Juri_JS, PatCartier, Obelix, E69_Cananas, J2_Trupobaw, namhee2, SCG_Fenris_Wolf, LF_Gallahad, Mr. Black Dog and all our Beta Testers and anyone else who pitched in to help us this past year in any capacity!   Also, we want to say thanks to our professional development partners Ugra Media, DigitalForms, Michael Luchin & Team and Ivan Shirshov who are doing a great job expanding the Great Battles series!   Plans for 2022   So, what’s in store for 2022? Lots of things! Our main goals are to release BON and FCII by the summertime and work to release the Collector Planes and Tanks we have previously announced. As we do that, we will begin planning for future titles and continue to try and beef up our personnel so we can have better options then we’ve had previously for parallel development and new technology.   You can check out the list of the content we previously announced and what their status currently is. There is much new content coming in 2022 along with some new features and usability improvements that we will share in our Developer Diaries.   Fokker D.VIII - Released in 2021
    Spad 7 150hp -  Released in 2021
    Spitfire Mk.XIV - Released in 2021
    Fw-190 A-6 - Released in 2021
    Nieuport 28.C1 - Released in 2021
    Spad 7 180hp - Released in 2021
    GAZ-MM 72-K - Released in 2021
    Sd. Kfz. 10/5 + Flak38 - Released in 2021
    Typhoon Mk.Ib - Released in 2021
    P-51B/C - - Released in 2021
    Pfalz D.XII - Released in 2021
    Breguet 14.B2 - Released in 2021
    DFW C.V. - Released in 2021
    Airco DH.4 - Released in 2021
    Western Front WWI Map – Scheduled for Q1 2022, might slip to Q2 if quality issues. (Made by Ugra Media)
    Normandy Map - Scheduled for Q2 2022
    Sopwith Triplane – Scheduled for Q1 2022
    Ju 88 C-6 – Scheduled for Q1 2022
    Handley Page 0-400 – Scheduled for late Q1 2022
    Gotha G.V – Coming in Q1 2022
    C-47A – Scheduled for Q2 2022 (Made by Ugra Media)
    B-26 (AI) – Scheduled for late Q1 2022
    V-1 Cruise Missile – Scheduled for Q2 2022 (new engineering needed to make this to launch and fly right)
    Ar-234 – Scheduled for Q2 2022
    Mosquito FB Mk.VI – Scheduled for Q2 2022
    Me-410 – Scheduled for Q2 2022
    IAR – 80/81 – Second half of 2022 (Made by Ivan Shirshov)
    Churchill Mk.IV Tank – Summer 2022
    Stug III Mobile Assault Gun – Summer 2022
    Siemens & Schuckert D.IV – Scheduled for 2022 (Made by Ugra Media)
    Sopwith Snipe – Scheduled for 2022 (Made by Ugra Media)
    Li-2 – After C-47 (Made by Ugra Media)
      Thanks again to all of your support in 2021 and for your continued support in 2022!!  

     

    WOFF BH&H II PATCH 1.20 RELEASED
    Polovski
    By Polovski,
    Hot on the heels of V1.19 comes V1.20 update for WOFF BH&H II. Version 1.20   7 January 2022
    1)    Allied and Central Powers 'incursion' range limit 'on or off' is now selectable in workshops, individually - see Version 1.19 items 7) and 8)
    2)    Fixed a text display issue on some Aircraft Stats pages.
    3)    Fixed an issue that prevented the Zeppelin R type from appearing in the Quick Combat lists. This also contains all previous updates, of course.

    A new Review of WOFF BH&H II by SmartWargames
    Polovski
    By Polovski,
    A new Review of WOFF BH&H II; SmartWargames posted a very in hands on depth review on YouTube.    "...if you need it short, it is likely the best WW1 sim you can get..."
    "...one of the best campaign modes ever done in a military sim..."    

    WOFF BH&H II PATCH 1.19 RELEASED
    Polovski
    By Polovski,
    Happy New Year 2022 to all!

    Today to celebrate the New Year we have released an update for Wings Over Flanders Fields Between Heaven & Hell II  to bring it to V1.19.   This update has quite a few good new improvements and fixes, so well worth checking out.

    Please see the WOFF  BH&H II Download Page  on our website to download.

    WOFF BH&H II CHANGE LOG: Version 1.19  4 January 2022 1)    Changed weather cloud system to reduce frequency of dark and light clouds being mixed.
    2)    Aircraft stats page is now a window - not full-screen.
    3)    Revised City Surrounds and City Center alpha masks.
    4)    Revised Vehicle lighting.
    5)    Revised Saturated clouds and cloud lighting.
    6)    Revised Sea Bias and fixed an issue in Facility Lighting.
    7)    German fighters will no longer engage, and will break off a fight if too far over enemy territory in campaign mode Note: AC will always defend themselves if attacked!
    8)    Allied fighters will no longer engage, and will break off a fight if too far over enemy territory in campaign mode Note: AC will always defend themselves if attacked!
    9)    AI fighters will no longer attack landing AC for fear of ground guns nor will they pursue enemies deep into enemy territory if they are running.
    10)     Improved 'go home descend' altitude validity checks.
    11)    Improved AI Ground avoidance in hilly terrain.
    12)    Fixed an issue that would sometimes cause damaged AC to circle 'endlessly' in GA mode.
    13)    Fixed an issue that would sometimes cause GA mode to affect ground strafing and or balloon attack.
    14)    Fixed an issue at certain airfields that caused AI to collide with trees in proximity to the landing area.
    15)    Progressive AC system damage is now a function of AC speed where applicable.
    16)   Improved thunderstorm sounds (thanks to Creaghorn).   This patch of course also includes all previous updates.  

    Il2 Update 4.702 released "P-51B"
    76.IAP-Blackbird
    By 76.IAP-Blackbird,
    Update 4.702
    Dear Friends,
    We're glad to report that the work on 4.702 update is finished and it is released. It doesn't contain as many changes as the previous one, but it does bring the long-awaited P-51B-5 fighter for the Battle of Normandy! It took a very long time, but there were some reasons for this - namely the long list of its modifications. It has three different gunsights(!), two canopies - standard and Malcolm Hood where the moving part of the canopy is a single spherical shaped piece of plexiglass. This aircraft is also the first to have flexible bomb loadouts depending on the country (please note that for this feature to work you should select the aircraft skin of a country you want before generating a quick mission and not after that on the hangar screen). Of course, it also uses the new DVD damage visualization system and dynamic tactical codes.
     
     
     

    Along with P-51B, we have a late Christmas gift for the owners of Flying Circus Vol.I - two new free campaigns Gallant Green featuring the British S.E.5a and Red Knights featuring the German Albatros D.V. There are also 10 new single-player missions showcasing all the birds of Vol.I. They were created by our friend Jaegermeister. A big THANK YOU to him for creating them. Enjoy!

     

    Jaegermeister has created 28 custom skins that can be used with the Campaigns. You can download them HERE.

    As usual, there are many other improvements and additions aimed at increasing the sim quality you can see in the list below. IL-2 Sturmovik team wishes you a Happy New Year, all the best and for your dreams to be fulfilled!

    1. The P-51B-5 fighter is now available for all Early Access customers of Battle of Normandy;
    2. The new free campaign "Gallant Green" (S.E.5a) was added for all Flying Circus Vol.I owners;
    3. The new free campaign "Red Knights" (Albatros DVa) was added for all Flying Circus Vol.I. owners;
    4. 10 single missions showcasing Flying Circus Vol.I aircraft were added;
    5. Visual pixelization and shimmering of medium and low-density clouds at medium and far distances was minimized. Note: Radeon users may experience some minor artifacts or visual anomalies due to this change. We are working to fix this, but the solution may take until next update as we need to discuss with AMD.
    6. Radio compasses of all German planes except Ju 52 were retouched (Oyster_KAI);
    7. Seats and throttle controls of all Messerschmitts were redrawn (Oyster_KAI);
    8. P-51D panel lettering improved (Oyster_KAI);
    9. Detail of the sight cap on all Spitfires improved (Oyster_KAI);
    10. All Fw 190 A8 paint schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney)
    11. All Bf 109 G6 Late paint-schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    12. All Bf 109 G14 paint-schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    13. All Bf 109 K4 paint schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    14. All Me 262 paint schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    15. All P-47D-22 paint schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    16. All P-47D-28 paint -schemes, including the default, were redrawn (Martin =ICDP= Catney);
    17. Fixed number of rounds for KV-1 tank when there are two ammo types with one prevailing type;
    18. Tracers and navigation lights are not visible through clouds;
    19. New effects of fires of aircraft engines and fuel tanks created;
    20. Fixed misalignment of machine gun and automatic gun bursts on detailed ground vehicles;
    21. Fixed an issue that caused large planes at a distance of more than 10km to be invisible in binoculars;
    22. Morning/evening fog is now visible at different haze settings, not only the maximum one;
    23. Low visibility z-fighting of the morning fog has been eliminated;
    24. Reduced "blockiness" of cloud shadows on the surface;
    25. The influence of launch tubes, transport containers and paratroopers on total aircraft mass was restored;
    26. The old issue where the propeller was visible through the light halo of the cockpit light bulb is gone thanks to improved technology;
    27. Fixed an issue where the formation lights toggle switches on American fighters were not animated when the engine was turned off;
    28. Added parameter for VR: render_eye = 0 [-1, 0, 1] to startup.cfg. If set to -1, only the left eye camera will be shown on the monitor in VR mode, and only the right eye view if set to 1. If set to 0 it shows both eyes.
    29. HUD appears faster on mission start;
    30. Fixed problem with the direction of MLRS rockets in a multiplayer game;
    31. Restored functionality of fixed cameras (LAlt+2) in multiplayer (both Cooperative and Dogfight modes) when starting the server from within the game with spectators allowed (difficulty option Allow Spectators).

Portal by DevFuse · Based on IP.Board Portal by IPS


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