Tag Archives: Missile

Did Russia Shoot Down NATO Jets + Helicopters In Ukraine?!

Did Russia Shoot Down NATO Jets + Helicopters In Ukraine?!

Did Russia just shoot down NATO jet fighters and helicopters that were sent to help Ukraine?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Russia Just Shot Down NATO Jets + Helicopters In Ukraine!

People are sharing a video created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), which claim to be evidence of NATO jet fighters and helicopters being shot down by Russia while trying to help Ukraine.

The video has an overlay that says, “Only China has the privilege to watch the live video, not even the western countries and the world.“, and it is accompanied by this message :

☝️Nato sent their jet fighter & Helicopter to help Ukraine, as soon as they entered the border, they were attacked by the Russian missile. not a single one escaped. only the Chinese media reported that news, non in the West.
☝️Nato 战机jet fighter & Helicopter 去幇助鸟克兰一进入边畍就被俄羅斯飞彈打的一个都跑不掉, 只有中國媒體才能報導西方沒有。

 

Truth : Russia Did Not Shoot Down NATO Jets + Helicopters In Ukraine!

This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛), and spread by pro-CCP and pro-Russian netizens and groups.

Fact #1 : That Video Was From A Video Game

The viral video does not show actual combat in Ukraine. It is really nothing more than a compilation of two gameplay videos from the game, ArmA 3.

ArmA 3, which is also known as ArmA III or Armed Assault 3, is an open-world, military tactical shooter game by Bohemia Interactive.

The first half of the video was cropped from an ArmA 3 video called “Combat Helicopter shot down by Missile – 4 Tanks Blown Up – Milsim – ArmA 3” – from 0:11 to 2:08, cutting off just before the videos says “Subscribe for more!“.

Fact #2 : The Original Video Is Blocked In China

Ironically, the original ArmA 3 gameplay videos that the viral fake video used are hosted on YouTube, which is blocked in China.

So the overlay claiming that “only China has the privilege to watch the live video” is not only false, it is a sad reminder of the censorship in China.

The truth is – only people in China have the “privilege” of being lied to using a fake video that is easily available to the rest of the world.

Fact #3 : That Was A Russian Helicopter

We can’t tell what anti-aircraft missiles were fired at the beginning of the video, but we can easily see that they were fired at a Russian helicopter.

Anyone who watched a Rambo movie or two would easily recognise the distinctive shape of the Soviet Union’s “flying tank” – the Mil Mi-24 helicopter, which is also known as Mi-25 or Mi-35.

Fact #4 : That Was A Russian Tank

At around 1:00 of the video, it zooms in into a tank before it is destroyed by a missile.

The tank profile is also easily recognisable as a Russian tank, most likely the T-80 main battle tank.

Fact #5 : That Was An American TOW Missile

At around the 1:44 mark in the fake video, you can see that the soldier and the missile launcher that destroyed one of the tanks.

That is the M220 launcher for the American TOW BGM-71E anti-tank missile, not a Russian missile launcher.

In other words – the video does not show Russian forces destroying NATO tanks and helicopters. It actually shows US forces in the ArmA 3 game shooting down Russian tanks and helicopters.

Here is a comparison of the screenshot (left) and the frontal aspect of the same TOW missile launcher in the ArmA 3 game.

Fact #6 : There Are No NATO Forces In Ukraine

NATO Allied Land Command confirmed that “there are no NATO forces or leaders in Ukraine in any capacity“.

While NATO nations are sending financial and military aid to Ukraine, no NATO soldiers or leaders are deployed to the country.

So the claim that NATO sent jets and helicopters to help Ukraine fight off the Russian invasion is false.

Fact #7 : NATO Refused To Send Aircraft Into Ukraine

NATO also repeatedly refused to create a No-Fly Zone over Ukraine, despite President Volodymyr Zelenskyy pleading for one.

That’s partly because the anti-aircraft missiles NATO countries supplied have successfully prevented Russia from achieving any kind of air superiority in Ukraine.

NATO has also publicly stated that they want to avoid a direct confrontation with Russia, which could lead to a continent-wide conflict.

That is also why they refused to send Ukraine jet fighters to replace those destroyed by Russian attacks.

The claim that NATO is sending jet fighters and helicopters to help Ukraine is bullshit.

Read more : Did NATO Promise Not To Expand One Inch Further East?!

Please watch out for similar fake news created by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛)!

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Did China Threaten West With Waterloo In South China Sea?

Did China threaten the West with a repeat of the Battle of Waterloo in the South China Sea?

Find out what is this Chinese threat going viral on social media, and what the FACTS really are…

 

Claim : China threatens West with Battle of Waterloo in South China Sea!

In the viral poster being shared on social media, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying is seen warning Western powers – Don’t Let It Become Your Waterloo! with a hypothetical scenario.

It was originally posted sometime in July 2020, but was “reactivated” in May 2021 during heightened tensions with the West.

WARNING ISSUED TO WESTERN ALLIES IN SOUTH CHINA SEA

Don’t Let It Become Your Waterloo!

The scenario :

  • An attack by US, UK, Australia & Japanese naval forces will be met with electronic disabling of all ships and planes making them sitting targets…
  • US & allies missiles will fail to fire & if they do may explode mid air or re-directed to return to base!
  • The Chinese will give them one warning to withdraw or be sunk!
  • WATERLOO REPLAYED IN 60 MINUTES OF LESS

 

China threatens West with Waterloo in South China Sea : Complete BS

While it may excite pro-China netizens, this is yet another piece of “fan fiction”, like US Navy withdrawing from South China Sea or Mark Zuckerberg’s Not Pretty China Wife.

Fact #1 : Hua Chunying Never Threatened Waterloo

Anyone who checks Hua Chunying’s official Twitter account can confirm that she never posted such a threat.

She may be sarcastic and controversial in her remarks, but she is the official spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

Such an overt threat of military action against the US, UK, Australia and Japan, will be seen as an official declaration of hostile intent by China.

It would certainly free the West to ramp up their support of Taiwan, and to actively prepare for hostilities with China.

Fact #2 : Chinese Censors Would Not Have Allowed Such Fake News, Unless…

Such a fake post would not be allowed to be shared on social media, especially Chinese microblogs, without the expressed permission of the Chinese government.

Chinese censors actively and quickly remove all references to anything remotely critical of the Chinese government, like the 1989 Tiananmen Square protest and massacre, or the Hong Kong protests.

We should also not forget that they quickly clamped down on Dr. Li Wenliang when he tried to warn his fellow doctors about COVID-19, forcing him to sign a letter promising not to do it again.

So it would only be possible for any Chinese-related fake news to be spread so widely, with the tacit approval of the Chinese government.

Fact #3 : EMP Weapons Can Disable Ships + Planes, But…

EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) weapons can be used to disrupt or destroy electronics on ships and planes, but they are not magical weapons as claimed in the post :

  • High-Altitude EMP (HEMP) weapons detonate nuclear warheads in the stratosphere to disrupt electronics in a wide area.
  • Non-Nuclear EMP (NNEMP) weapons that use high explosives to deliver a much smaller electromagnetic pulse.
  • High-Powered Microwave (HPM) weapons like magnetrons and vircators – think of them as primitive versions of the ion cannons you see in Star Wars.

A Chinese HEMP weapon would destroy electronics in a very large area (including their own), so it won’t be deployed close to their own coast. This is something they would deploy against the US homeland.

An NNEMP missile would be something the Chinese would use against a carrier group, affecting a relatively small area – several dozen kilometres. However, these missiles would require constant targeting data, or the carrier group could simply move out of danger in mere minutes.

HPM weapons are still rather primitive with very short range. They also cannot target mass targets like EMP weapons.

Fact #4 : Disabled Missiles Won’t Return To Base

We applaud the writer for his/her creativity, but unlike regular mail, missiles don’t come with a return address.

Missiles disabled by EMP weapons, or electronic jammers, will just lose direction or fall harmlessly out of the sky.

They won’t, however, fly back to their base like homing pigeons. Neither can the Chinese reprogram them to return to base…

Fact #5 : China Is The Aggressor Here

While the writer warns of reprisals if the US, UK, Australia and Japan attack, the fact of the matter is – China is the aggressor in the South China Sea.

Whatever may have happened in the past, the US, UK, Australia and Japan are not the ones illegally building artificial islands, or militarising them, or threatening harm to passing ships and planes.

There is no danger of the US, UK, Australia or Japan attacking China. No one in the right mind would believe in such nonsense.

Rather, the danger lies in Chinese overreach in the South China Sea sparking a war, like how Hitler’s overreach with the invasion of Poland started World War 2.

Arguably, only an attack on Taiwan would draw the Western powers (sans Japan) to intervene militarily, and a military occupation of the Senkaku Islands would force Japan and the US to respond militarily.

Fact #6 : China Would Be The French At Waterloo

It’s not certain why China would warn the Western powers and Japan that they would face their own Battle of Waterloo.

In the Battle of Waterloo, it was Napoleon who attacked the allied forces from Prussia, the UK, the Netherlands, Hanover, Brunswick and Nassau.

In this fan fiction, China would be the French at Waterloo, fighting against the allied forces from the US, UK, Australia and Japan.

Is the writer suggesting that China is bound to lose against the allied forces? Interesting…

 

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Can Donald Trump Really Blame Iran For Rocket Attack?

Donald Trump just accused Iran of the rocket attack on the US embassy in Baghdad, threatening retaliation!

Take a look at the picture of three rockets he posted, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Donald Trump : Iran Responsible For Rocket Attack On US Embassy

Even in the waning days of his Presidency, Donald Trump isn’t quite done with Iran.

In a new threat against the Islamic Republic of Iran, Trump posted a picture of three unfired rockets, which he claimed were from Iran.

Our embassy in Baghdad got hit Sunday by several rockets. Three rockets failed to launch. Guess where they were from: IRAN. Now we hear chatter of additional attacks against Americans in Iraq…Some friendly health advice to Iran: If one American is killed, I will hold Iran responsible. Think it over.

As Trump isn’t a very popular president outside of his fanatical base (no kidding), there is much skepticism about his post.

Some have pointed out that the rockets have English markings and could be American-made. Others wonder if these are even rockets – they look more like large versions of a rifle cartridge than rockets.

 

Rocket Attack On US Embassy : A Quick Primer

Before we look into the veracity of Trump’s claims, here’s a quick primer on the rocket attack on the US embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.

At around 8:30 PM on Sunday, 20 December 2020, approximately 21 rockets were fired on the US embassy in Baghdad.

Only about half of the rockets hit the embassy compound, while the others missed and hit an Iraqi apartment complex and vehicles near the embassy.

Photo Credit : Reuters/Landov

In the end, two buildings and a gym in the embassy, vehicles outside the embassy and a generator at the apartment complex, were damaged.

There was only one injury – an Iraqi soldier – no one else died or were injured by the attack.

 

Is Iran Responsible For Rocket Attack On US Embassy?

Unfortunately, the answer isn’t quite so simple as yes or no, Iran did or did not fire those rockets at the US embassy in Baghdad.

Let’s take a look at the facts…

Fact #1 : Those Are 107 mm Haseb Rockets

The Haseb is an Iranian copy of the Chinese Type 63-2 – a spin-stabilised 107 mm rocket with a high-explosive (HE) warhead.

The entire rocket weighs about 18 kg, with an 8 kg cast TNT warhead and a Chinese MJ-1 (Jiàn-1) impact and graze fuse.

Fact #2 : Iran Manufactures + Uses 107mm Haseb Rockets

Haseb rockets are manufactured by Iran’s Armaments Industries Group (AIG), and used by Iranian forces as a short-ranged barrage weapon.

In this picture, IRGC commandos are seen loading a Type 63 rocket launcher mounted onto a pickup truck.

Fact #3 : The English Markings Are Genuine

Some sharp-eyed netizens noticed that rockets have English words on them, instead of Farsi or Arabic words :

107mm ROCKET
LOT : 573
DATE : 2016
N.W : 18kg
R.No. : 2103

This has led to suggestions that the rockets may be fake, or made by Americans themselves, or replicas of the real rockets used in a false flag operation.

Here you can see the actual rockets (on the left) and inert replicas of the Haseb rockets. No doubt they look very similar.

However, there is really no need for the US military to purchase replicas even for a false flag operation. Many Haseb rockets have been captured over the years.

The English markings do not mean they are American-made. The Haseb rocket is also made for export by Iran’s Armaments Industries Group (AIG), and so uses English markings.

The inert replica above has English markings, because the real Haseb rockets have English markings.

Fact #4 : Haseb Rockets Have A Very Short Range

Haseb rockets have a very short range – up to 9 kilometres, and are not very accurate.

That means they would have to be fired very close to the Baghdad Green Zone in order to have a reasonable chance of hitting the US embassy inside.

Any suggestion that Iranian forces fired them inside Baghdad itself would be ludicrous. Even if Iran wanted to strike at the Americans, they would use an allied militant group to make attribution difficult.

Fact #5 : Attribution Is Difficult

The Haseb rockets are not exclusively used by Iranian forces. They are exported to Iranian auxiliary forces and allied militant groups like the Hezbollah.

So it would not be possible for the United States to directly attribute the rocket attack to Iran, unless they capture the people who actually fired the rockets.

It could also be a rogue militant group, or even a false flag action by a rival nation-state. After all, numerous examples of the Haseb rocket have been captured by other militant groups and even countries like Israel.

In fact, Gen. Frank McKenzie, who leads the US Central Command and once warned that American forces imminent threat from Iran specifically told The Wall Street Journal,

I do not know the degree to which Iran is complicit. We do not seek a war, and I don’t actually believe they seek one either.

Even Iran-backed Kataib Hezbollah described the rocket attack on the US embassy as “undisciplined“.

Fact #6 : We Don’t Know Who Owned Those Rockets

The three Haseb rockets that Donald Trump posted were obviously not fired.

But whether they “failed to launch” as Trump claimed, or were simply captured unfired, is unknown. Trump likely can’t tell the difference.

Unless the rocketeers were captured together with these three rockets, it would be impossible to also attribute the rocket attack to any particular group, never mind Iran.

Even so, the mere possession of these rockets does not mean that they actually launched that particular attack.

 

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How Did Iran Shoot Down UIA Flight PS752 By Mistake?

It seems incredulous that Iran could shoot down UIA Flight PS752 by mistake, but the sad fact is that no military can always correctly identify bogies.

We examine how Iran mistook UIA Flight PS752 for a US cruise missile, and shot it down with a Tor M1 missile, killing all 176 people onboard.

 

The Circumstances Surrounding UIA Flight PS752

On 3 January 2020, US President Donald Trump escalated tensions with Iran by ordering the assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani.

Soleimani’s assassination by Hellfire missile could be construed as an act of war against Iran, and naturally compelled a military response. That came in the form of 22 ballistic missiles fired on two US bases in Iraq.

Read more : Is Donald Trump RESPONSIBLE For UIA Flight 752 Deaths?

The Iranians expected a US cruise missile attack in retaliation, and appeared to have prepared for such an eventuality with the deployment of short range missile defence systems around Tehran.

Five hours after they fired those ballistic missiles, UIA Flight PS752 took off from the Imam Khomeini International Airport.

Unfortunately, a SAM operator mistook it for a US cruise missile, and shot it down with a Tor M1 missile.

So how could Iran’s veteran military forces have made such a colossal mistake?

 

Tor M1 / SA-15 Gauntlet

First, let’s consider the SAM platform that shot down UIA Flight PS752 – the Russian Tor M1, also known by its NATO designation SA-15 Gauntlet.

The Tor (Russian for Torus) missile system is an armoured tracked vehicle with a pulse-doppler radar, and eight 9K331 Tor M1 missiles.

Introduced in 1991, this mobile SAM system is designed to accompany and protect troops in a battlefield against hostile aircraft and cruise missiles.

It is not usually parked in defence of fixed installations, and have greater autonomy than centralised air defence systems. It is likely that the Iranians brought in these mobile SAM systems as the last line of defence in an impending conflict.

 

War-Like Situation Before PS752 Flight

Next, we have to consider the war footing that the Iranian military, and specifically, the IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) found itself in, after launching ballistic missiles at US bases.

Besides, the United States did earlier just assassinate one of their top military leaders – an action that could be considered an act of war.

Even if the Iranian government does not want a war with the United States, the Iranian military and the IRGC would have been compelled to prepare for the worst.

It is with that mindset in mind, that we consider how Iran could have mistaken UIA Flight PS752 for a cruise missile, shooting it down.

 

How Did Iran Shoot Down UIA Flight PS752 By Mistake?

Poor Training?

As one of Iran’s older SAM systems and a short range system at that, the Tor M1 is likely to be assigned to less elite units. So it is plausible that inexperience or poor training led to the tragedy.

No Central Command?

Multiple Tor vehicles can be linked to a Ranzhir-M mobile command center, for increased detection range and centralised command.

It is possible that the Tor vehicles were dispersed for localised defence, and not linked to a central command system. That would leave the decision to fire in the hands of a junior officer, possibly even a conscript!

Short Reaction Time?

The Tor M1 missile also has a narrow engagement range of 1.5 km to 12 km. It cannot be used against anything closer than 1.5 km, or further than 12 km.

When Flight PS752 popped up just a few kilometres from this Tor M1 vehicle, it would give the missile operator just a matter of seconds to identify it and decide whether to fire or not.

Heightened Expectations Of A Strike?

The expectation of a retaliatory strike would, no doubt, weigh heavily on the mind of the missile operator. After all, they just fired 22 ballistic missiles on two US bases.

In normal circumstances, the Tor missile system would not be “weapons hot”. But they were expecting a salvo of cruise missiles, so the missile operator would have been light on the trigger.

Failure To Whitelist Flight PS752?

When Flight PS752 popped up on the Tor missile system’s radar, the operator would have to decide if it was a hostile aircraft or a legitimate civilian aircraft.

Unfortunately, its pulse-doppler radar would not be able identify the type of the aircraft, only its speed and direction. But Flight PS752 and a Tomahawk cruise missile would have roughly similar subsonic speeds.

An example of a pulse doppler radar’s display

That’s why civilian airliners use transponders and the IFF system to ensure that everyone knows that they are not a threat. Flight PS752 would definitely have been squawking its transponder code.

Normally, SAM crews would receive the flight plans and transponder codes for airliners scheduled to fly in and out of the area, so they can be eliminated as threats.

It is plausible that this Tor missile operator did not, or could not, clear Flight PS752’s transponder code, and assumed it was a cruise missile attempting to masquerade as an airliner.

Failure To Establish No-Fly Zone

One thing is for sure though – the Iranians should have established a no-fly zone around Tehran, after firing their ballistic missiles. It was a serious and fatal mistake.

The danger of jittery, trigger-happy Air Defence crews in charge of weapons hot SAM systems cannot be understated.

It would also have made it easier to identify hostile aircraft in Iranian airspace. Yet they continued to let civilian aircraft fly in and out of Tehran.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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