Syrian War Report – April 27, 2018: Russia EW Systems ‘Disabling’ U.S. EC-130 EW Aircraft

Russian EW Systems ‘Disabling’ U.S. EC-130 Electronic Warfare Aircraft In Syria

An EC-130H Compass Call flies a training mission over Lake Mead, Ariz. (U.S. Air Force photo)

The US military is complaining that Russia allegedly jams US electronic warfare weapons (EW) deployed in and near Syria.

According to the head of Special Operations Command, Gen. Raymond Thomas, the Russians are “disabling” even U.S. EC-130 Compass Call electronic warfare aircraft flying near Syria.

“Right now in Syria we are operating in the most aggressive EW environment on the planet from our adversaries. They are testing us everyday, knocking our communications down, disabling our EC-130s, etcetera,” Breaking Defense quoted remarks by Gen. Thomas .

The EC-130H Compass Call is an electronic warfare aircraft employed by the US military. The weapon is designed to disrupt enemy command and control communications and to limit adversary coordination essential for enemy force management. The Compass Call system employs offensive counter-information and electronic attack capabilities.

Breaking Defense also quoted Laurie Moe Buckhout, a retired Army colonel who specializes in EW on the issue:

“The Russians have redone and reengineered their entire EW fleet in the last 20 years,” Buckhout said. “The Russians put in millions on upgrades after Georgia. They’ve ended up with killer capabilities, jamming in a multitude of frequencies for hundreds of kilometers.”

When the Russian military first claimed that the Syrian Air Defense Forces (SADF) had intercepted 71 launched by the US-led bloc on April 14 [according to the Pentagon, 105 missiles were launched and all of them hit their targets], some experts immediately suggested that Russia may have employed its EW systems to assist the SADF in this task.

On April 25, the Russian military provided more details over its version of the events and updated the provided numbers. According to the updated info, only 22 US-led bloc missiles hit their targets in Syria on April 14, 66 missiles were intercepted and a part of the missiles failed to reach its targets. Two unexploded missiles were reportedly delivered to Moscow from Syria. The Russians also showed the wrecakge of the intercepted missiles and an unexploded warhead of the Tomahawk. MORE HERE

This info contributes to the suggestion that Russia employed some of its EW systems to assist the SADF in countering the April 14 missile strike.

It’s important to note that despite the details provided by the Russian military, the Pentagon argues that all the 105 missiles hit their targets.

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