Download AV-8B Harrier II Units of Operation Enduring Freedom by Lon Nordeen, Jim Laurier PDF

By Lon Nordeen, Jim Laurier

This e-book is the 3rd of 3 volumes on US Marine Corps Harrier IIs in strive against, and it's the first quantity in print to hide the full tale of the AV-8B's carrier employment in the course of peacekeeping operations after which in Afghanistan.

In the Seventies the USMC obtained the AV-8A Harrier from the united kingdom to check V/STOL (vertical and/or brief take-off and touchdown) suggestions for shut air aid. A winning investment conflict used to be as a result fought within the Nineteen Eighties to safe army, political, and monetary aid to extend this idea to increase and box the second one iteration AV-8B Harrier II from the past due Nineteen Eighties onward. The AV-8B used to be, and nonetheless is, the one tactical airplane that can set up with Marine forces on amphibious attack ships and supply air hide and shut air help become independent from huge deck plane vendors. Having noticeable motion in-theater in the course of Operation desolate tract hurricane in 1991, the Harrier II used to be seriously inquisitive about peacekeeping operations in Balkans within the Nineteen Nineties, in addition to in Africa from 1992 to 2002. From past due 2001, the jet took half within the 'War on Terror" in the course of the early section of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. devices built with the airplane in the beginning flew from amphibious attack ships off the Pakistani coast, sooner than changing into land-based in-theater from early 2002 following the profession of Afghanistan via Coalition troops. Harrier II squadrons have maintained a presence in-theatre helping anti-Taliban and al-Qaeda operations ever since.

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The runway at Kandahar was terrible – it was so bumpy that during takeoffs it would cause the pilots’ HUD to vibrate violently enough to make it blurry. On numerous occasions the jet exhaust from our aircraft blew big chunks out of the runway during takeoff runs. Because of the runway’s deteriorated state, I wanted to limit the number of takeoffs and landings so as to preserve the runway and to minimise the possibility of engine damage from FOD. ‘By taking off and staying airborne for five hours, our aircraft were able to cover a window that would normally be serviced by several sorties (and associated takeoffs and landings).

Our principal weapons of choice were the GBU-38 JDAM [VMA-542 became the first Harrier II unit to drop a GBU-38 JDAM in combat from a LHD class warship] and the GBU-12 LGB. One jet would carry the JDAM and the other an LGB, since the latter weapon could hit moving targets – the JDAM was a precision weapon for stationary targets. With the JDAM [which could be used in any weather conditions, unlike the fair weather LGB] you could adjust the impact angle. It also had a greater standoff capability than the LGB.

With forces moving quickly, we found that “keyhole CAS” helped pilots and FACs work well together. We would get a nine-line brief but in a different format, receiving all the target coordinates, elevation and restrictions, as well as other data. ‘The first time I saw action in Afghanistan, a Marine patrol was getting shot at and a FAC asked us to perform a show of force flyby. I was focused on doing the job right to help Marines in combat, and we kept looking around because we weren’t sure if they were shooting at us too.

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