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Antonov 12: The latest information about dangerous substances

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Antonov 12: The latest information about dangerous substances
PHOTO By Anna Zvereva from Tallinn, Estonia - Ukraine Air Alliance, UR-CZZ, Antonov An-12BP, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=44650255

New information has become public about the Antonov 12 aircraft that crashed outside of Kavala, Greece. According to the new information from the Greek ERT, the eight bodies of the dead Ukrainian crew were found and the dangerousness of the substances in the cargo was clarified.

A special team from the Hellenic Armed Forces was at the scene and after an investigation it was found that there is no problem with dangerous or toxic substances in the area where the aircraft crashed.

Antonov 12: The latest information about dangerous substances
PHOTO By Jwh at Wikipedia Luxembourg, CC BY-SA 3.0 lu, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=67426469

The problem is that dozens of mortar shells are scattered in the area where it fell, and the EOD specialists of the Hellenic Army will have to neutralize or remove them, a process that is highly risky.

The cargo carried by the Antonov consisted of training mortar shells and flares that Bangladesh has ordered from Serbia.

According to multiple but currently unconfirmed sources, the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs is expected to proceed with an investigation as it appears to have been a concealment of information regarding the ammunition it was transporting.

Still, according to information from ERT, for the better or for the worse, although no dangerous substances have been detected in the area where the An-12BK fell, samples of the soil, flora and irrigation water have been sent to the Greek State General Laboratory.

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Iran Arms Its Ships With Drones: “If the Enemies Make a Mistake…”

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Iran Arms Its Ships With Drones:
PHOTO By Tansimnews

The Iranian Navy has announced the introduction of the first naval division (as they call it) with ships that can launch drones (unmanned aerial vehicles).

At the unveiling ceremony held by Tehran, Iranian Navy vessels such as tankers and smaller vessels can be seen launching drones at targets.

Iran Arms Its Ships With Drones: "If the Enemies Make a Mistake..."
PHOTO By Tansimnews

The interesting thing is that similar shots were also presented by an Iranian submarine which launched a drone.

The videos and images released by the Iranian Navy are a message to the US, Israel and its neighbors that at any moment it can launch drone attacks from its ships.

Iran Arms Its Ships With Drones: "If the Enemies Make a Mistake..."
PHOTO By Tansimnews

This new Iranian capability was revealed as President Joe Biden visited Saudi Arabia and while tensions with Iran continue to rise.

“If the enemies make a mistake, (these drones) will deal with them”

said Iranian Army Commander Abdulrahim Mousavi.

The antidote to these Iranian drones and UAVs is the Israeli IRON BEAM, which is equipped with a laser to inexpensively and effectively shoot down such threats.

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The Greek Minister of National Defence in the US: New meetings on the F-35

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The Greek Minister of National Defence in the US: New meetings on the F-35
Photo by mod.mil.gr

The Greek Minister of National Defense, Nikos Panagiotopoulos, is visiting the USA, at the invitation of his American counterpart.

The Greek Ministry of National Defence announced regarding the visit:

“The Minister of National Defence, Mr. Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos, is traveling today, Sunday, July 17, 2022, to the United States of America, responding to the invitation of his American counterpart, Mr. Lloyd Austin.

During his visit, Mr. Panagiotopoulos will meet at the Pentagon with his American counterpart, tomorrow, Monday, July 18 at 21:00 Greek time.

It will be preceded by meetings with the leadership and executives of the “Heritage Institute” think tank and with high-ranking officials of the State Department at 17:00 and 18:30 Greek time respectively.

The Greek Minister of National Defence in the US: New meetings on the F-35
Photo by DVIDS, “The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”

Subsequently, the Minister of National Defense will collaborate with the head of the US Pentagon’s F-35 Program, LtGen Michael Smidt, as well as with the President of the American-Hellenic Institute (AHI, Hellenic-American Institute), Mr. Nikos Laryngakis” says the announcement of the ministry.

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BRINC Drones at the Hellenic Army General Staff: Possible presentation of the LEMUR

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General Staff: Possible presentation of the LEMUR
PHOTO Copyright: @BrincDrones Twitter

The growing interest of the Hellenic Army General Staff in UAVs and DRONES is well-known, and this can be seen from the successive meetings held on the subject.

According to a statement from the Greek Ministry of National Defense:

“On Thursday, April 14, 2022, a video conference presentation was held for the staff of the National Defence General Staff and the Hellenic Army General Staff by representatives of the AIRVID company, regarding UAV products of the BRINC DRONES company which it represents in Greece,” the announcement states.

The American company BRINC DRONES has presented its drone, the LEMUR (Lemur S) which we suspect was also presented at the Hellenic Army.

The LEMUR S is a drone that is designed for a flight duration of about 30 minutes and it can withstand falls through the “turtle” method as the company calls it, where the drone can even in the event of a fall, turn over in the right direction and rise again.

It has LIDAR capabilities, it can also break windows and open doors to enter a building.

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Kilicdaroglu’s admission: “From the F-35s, we now beg for the F-16s”

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Kilicdaroglu's admission:
photo by Nebil; Turkish Air Force

The head of the Turkish opposition CHP party, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, while blaming Turkish President Erdogan, essentially admitted that Turkey has been left unarmed.

Kilicdaroglu even mentioned in his statements that since Turkey was ready to receive the already paid F-35s that it had agreed with the US, it is now asking for F-16s and those under conditions.

“The scandalous statements from Finland and Sweden even before the ink was dry on the NATO signature showed that Erdogan signed up again without getting anything. Now we see that the scandal continues in the matter of F-16.

Kilicdaroglu's admission: "From the F-35s, we now beg for the F-16s"
Photo by Mark Lowen, CC BY-SA 4.0

As if it were not enough for us to be excluded from the F-35 fighter jet project, of which we are one of the investors, and not get our money back, we see that they are trying to set conditions for where we can and can’t use the F-16 aircraft that we have been reduced to begging.

Erdogan is not able to bring anything tangible to this country except cheap propaganda.

[…]Now Erdogan, let me tell you what to do. Come out and say “I signed it, but the opposition will prevent it from being passed in parliament, I don’t have full control of this matter even in my own group”.

From the moment Turkey comes back to the table, we have only one condition. This time, don’t try to do business just by taking the translator with you, let the proper diplomats do their job. No one should leave the table without an agreement on the F-35 and S-400 issues.

This is where I call the US. If you’re going to look for a culprit in this matter, it’s our fault. If you have a problem, deal with us” says Kemal Kilicdaroglu in parts of his statements.

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An-12BK crashed in Greece: What happened and it crashed in Kavala?

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An-12BK crashed in Greece: What happened and crashed in Kavala?
PHOTO By Jwh at Wikipedia Luxembourg, CC BY-SA 3.0 lu, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=67426469

New information from the Serbian Ministry of Defence, change of final destination of the plane.

Transport Antonov An-12BK that took off from Nis, Serbia and was heading to Dhaka, Bangladesh, suffered engine failure and unfortunately crashed west of Kavala, Greece.

Its crew reportedly consisted of 8 people and although there is still no official information, according to FlightRadar24 it seems that the aircraft issued emergency near Mount Athos.

The An-12BK is owned by Meridian Ltd. of Ukraine also known as MEM and was transporting hazardous material.

Local sources say it was probably carrying ammunition and military equipment expected to be delivered to a foreign country.

These local sources seem to be confirmed by the Serbian Ministry of Defence, which states that the aircraft was loaded with mortar training missiles purchased by Bangladesh with intermediate stops in Amman, Jordan, and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The transport plane had an engine failure and the crew had requested to make an emergency landing but the engine fire did not allow it to approach an airport near Kavala.

Investigations are currently being carried out according to ERT, the residents of the surrounding areas are asked to close doors, windows and air conditioners until the level of danger and toxicity of the material it transported is investigated.

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US: “We will protect the Philippines with arms from China”

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US:
State Department Photo by Ron Przysucha / Public Domain

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on China to respect international law and guaranteed that any attack on the Philippines would trigger a US military response in the South China Sea.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made this statement on the sixth anniversary of the International Court of Arbitration’s 2016 ruling in favor of the Philippines over disputed maritime boundaries.

“We reaffirm that an armed attack on the Armed Forces of the Philippines … would trigger U.S. mutual defense commitments,” Blinken said in a statement on Tuesday. Mutual defense commitments stem from a 1951 treaty between the US and the Philippines.

US: "We will protect the Philippines with arms from China"
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jordan Crouch

“We again call on the People’s Republic of China to abide by its obligations under international law and stop its provocative behavior,” the US Secretary of State added.

Philippine Foreign Minister Enrique Manalo said on Tuesday that the court’s 2016 findings “are indisputable.”

The remarks come a day after Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warned leaders at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) secretariat in Jakarta, Indonesia, against being used as “pawns” by major powers.

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Presentation of “DIAS 2” at the Hellenic Army General Staff by the Hellenic Aerospace Industry

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Presentation of
PHOTO SOURCE: GES-DIAS

It seems that the Hellenic Aerospace Industry has presented new capabilities for the Greek tactical and technical fire control system DIAS-2.

Specifically, according to an announcement by the Ministry of National Defence:

“On Thursday, July 14, 2022, a presentation was held to the Hellenic Army General Staff by representatives of the company Hellenic Aerospace Industry, regarding the tactical and technical fire control system “DIAS 2”, the announcement concludes.

Presentation of "DIAS 2" at the Hellenic Army General Staff by the Hellenic Aerospace Industry
PHOTO SOURCE: GES – DIAS

As stated by the Hellenic Army General Staff, “the DIAS Tactical and Technical Fire Control System is a command and control system that supports artillery operations at all levels, from the individual artillery piece itself, to the Army Corps.

It was developed entirely by Greek companies under the guidance of the Artillery Directorate/Hellenic Army General Staff and the assistance of the Hellenic Army Artillery School.

Presentation of "DIAS 2" at the Hellenic Army General Staff by the Hellenic Aerospace Industry
PHOTO SOURCE: GES – DIAS

It has the ability to determine firing data for all possible combinations of guns and ammunition, which are available to the Hellenic Artillery.

It also provides the possibility of managing three-dimensional digital terrain models and digital interconnection through radio stations, or through wired means of communication”

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Ground Master 400a: The Thales radar the Hellenic Air Force is considering

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Ground Master 400a: The Thales radar the Hellenic Air Force is considering
By MKFI - Own work, Public Domain, wikimedia

Ground Master Family

In addition to the long-range Ground Master 400, Thales offers 2 other radars of the same family.

The first and “smallest” of them is the Ground Master 60. Its design is centered around the agility it offers. With a range of 80-150 kilometers, it is light weight, short deployment time and can be mounted on 4×4 or 6×6 vehicles.

With this data it becomes ideal for covering formations, as it can provide targeting of very short (VSHORAD) or short (SHORAD) range anti-aircraft weapons, as well as gaps in air defenses.

The “middle” member of the family is the Ground Master 200.

Ground Master 400a: The Thales radar the Hellenic Air Force is considering

The GM200 shares several elements with the larger Ground Master 400. It is capable of “seeing” targets at a distance of 250 kilometers while the maximum range at which it can “lock” them is in the order of 100 kilometers.

Based on the above, the GM200 is ideal to complement longer-range radars and can be combined very satisfactorily with medium-range anti-aircraft.

Ground Master 400a

The Ground Master 400a is the latest addition to the Ground Master series and is an evolution of the Ground Master 400.

The development of the GM400a was deemed necessary by Thales so that it would be possible for the “biggest” member of the family to cope in the field.

Five times the computing power

The main upgrade we notice comes in the computing power of the system. With this increased fivefold, the performance of the GM400a increases.

Initially, the range was increased by about 10%. The range of the previous versions was 470 kilometers, while in the “alpha” version it exceeds 500 kilometers and reaches 515 kilometers.

The second positive that results from the GM400 upgrade is the ability to “see” in dense environments. Compared to the previous GM400s, the GM400a offers a better “image” to the user even against small targets such as UAVs which are still flying at a fairly low altitude.

Technical characteristics of the GM400a

Ground Master 400a: The Thales radar the Hellenic Air Force is considering
PHOTO Copyright: Pascal

The GM400a is a three-dimensional (3D) AESA technology radar. It is capable of locating and engaging targets from small UAVs to ballistic missiles.

It operates in the S-band frequency and like most modern radars incorporates GaN technology semiconductors.

At the same time, it utilizes stacked beam technology making it more accurate in locating low and fast flying targets.

The radar offers 40 degree elevation coverage. As mentioned above, the maximum range reaches 515 kilometers and the “ceiling” is at 100,000 feet (30.5 kilometers).

It performs 10 rotations per minute (10 RPM), refreshing the entire image every 6 seconds.

The total area it covers has increased by 20% compared to the previous generation GM400.

It incorporates IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) Mode 5.

Compared to its predecessor, it incorporates advanced artificial intelligence algorithms and is more secure against cyber attacks.

It requires 4 people to man and operate it.

The company sets the bar high in everything it has to do with system availability and reliability. It is stated that the maintenance time needed within one year of operation is 30 hours and that critical failure will occur after approximately 3,000-3,500 hours of use.

Finally, the GM400a comes in two versions. With the size to meet the requirements of the ISO 20-foot container, it can operate normally on a 6×6 or 8×8 vehicle in the form of a container with an integrated lifting mechanism.

Obviously, it’s also offered as part of a fully stable platform.

The Greek interest

As mentioned in the previous days, this radar was presented by Thales at the Hellenic Air Force General Staff. It seems that the Hellenic Air Force is planning to upgrade the air defense radars that it has at its disposal, after all, a similar meeting was held with the Italian company Leonardo for the ground version of the Kronos radars.

Back to the GM400a, it is certainly a very worthy solution in this field. It is an international “best-seller” with a large number of systems (>80) in service in France, Germany and several other countries.

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The USA will train Ukrainian pilots in the F-15 and F-16

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The USA will train Ukrainian pilots in the F-15 and F-16
A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle conducts air-to-air refueling with a KC-135 Stratotanker over the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, Aug. 1, 2020. The F-15C Eagle is a dual-role fighter designed to perform air-to-air and air-to-ground missions, demonstrating U.S. Air Forces Central Command's mission to deliver dominant air power to secure and stabilize the USCENTCOM area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. James Merriman)

Andriy Yermak, the head of Ukraine’s Presidential Office, confirmed on Friday that the United States may provide training to Ukrainian pilots in the F-15 and F-16 fighter jets.

According to a post by Yermak on Telegram, the United States House of Representatives has approved an amendment to be added to the budget of the United States Department of Defense for fiscal year 2023.

F-15 and F-16 fighter training

The USA will train Ukrainian pilots in the F-15 and F-16
U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Warren D. Spearman Jr.

This amendment will make it possible to start training Ukrainian pilots on F-15 and F-16 aircraft.

According to Yermak, the cost of the training program for Ukrainian pilots will be one hundred million United States dollars.

Earlier in the day, Ukraine’s ambassador to the United States Oksana Markarova said the 2023 United States defense budget bill provides $1 billion in critical defense assistance to Ukraine in fiscal year 2023.

In order for the proposed bill to become law, it must first be approved by the United States Congress and then signed into law by President Joe Biden.

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