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MigBuster

MiG-23 Flogger in the middle east 

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If you wanted to know more about all those targets in Strike Fighters you were blasting out of the sky all these years well now is your chance.

Didn't the Red Eagles fly the MiG-23 and say it was rubbish and that is all I need to know?  Unfortunately, the Red Eagles only flew (as far as we know) the MiG-23MS which was a very special version for third world countries. Special in that it was a modified MiG-23M airframe with MiG-21 avionics and short range IR missiles and yes the Red Eagles were right it was pretty much rubbish, but that should not be confused with the later ML/MLA/MLD types that were vastly improved. 

Part of the Middle East at war series this newly released book covers the MiG-23 types operated by Iraq, Egypt, Libya, Syria and Algeria between 1973 and 2018. The book also covers some of the technical differences between the types and the weapons they used and some of the situations the pilots faced both internally or externally. 

Of interest is one pretty detailed Libyan MiG-23MLD pilot account of a 2 v 2 mock dogfight he had got into against some US Navy F-14As in 1986.   

Austrian Tom Cooper has literally been on a mission from God for years now to get some truth over what happened to the other side in those many Mid-Eastern air wars we all know. He has amassed many contacts that were there at the time and has to be today, the western authority on the subject co authoring books with some of the most established and respected aviation historians.
This all started with the massive six part Arab MiGs series which gathered a lot of research and even more contacts which has led to a lot of spins offs including the two part African MiGs, three part Libyan Air Wars, and Iranian Tigers at War (Taghvaee).

 

The controversial Tom Cooper

Prior to the Arab MiG series Cooper was somebody taking a lot of flak, not only on the web site ACIG but in relation to other books co-authored 2003 to 2005, the main one being Iranian F-14 Tomcat units in combat. Although the research seems credible the context of the book is misleading, written from only an Iranian view point with several areas where the book contradicts itself. This led to some angry exchanges with several Iraqis on forums and brought into question some of the books material.
It is interesting to note that this new book makes little to no reference back to this earlier research and seems to make a big effort in providing information from mostly Arab and Russian/ Soviet sources. We at least now get some insight to the Iraq V Iran air war from an Iraqi viewpoint as well.

 

 

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Yes MLD - but similar to some of Syria / Bulgarias MLDs - never had the external changes (e.g. second dog tooth against the fuselage). 

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