Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Politics of War and Air Operations

In Shlomo Aloni’s book Israeli A-4 Skyhawk Units in Combat I read two interesting points about the air campaign over Lebanon in 1982. The first is just the numbers of A-4s that were available for Close Air Support (CAS) missions once the SAM batteries were suppressed. The aircraft often ended up flying a racetrack route waiting to be called. Units with an FAO will be able to call in a lot of airpower, within the rules of engagement. I am sure this will make many IDF players happy playing that side. An A-4 can bring a lot of ordinance. I can see there will be an offset in victory conditions to balance that out.

The second item was the impact of the War Cabinet on Operation Peace in Galilee in general and the air campaign in particular. I knew that in 1981 (pre Peace in Galilee) two Mi-8s were shot down by an order given by the cabinet. They made the decision and than afterwards tried to reopen debated. The IDF/AF Officer had to inform the cabinet that the order was already carried out and the two helicopters were shot down. This was all done in less than a half an hour.

What this book pointed out to me was that the ground and air operations were started and stopped as the War Cabinet debated Mole Cricket 19, the SEAD mission against the 19 known Syrian SAM batteries. This was going to expand the war even though the IDF and Syrian forces were already shooting at each other.  This would be an interesting addition to any campaign or scenario design. In a campaign game, as the IDF player is marshalling his or her forces, they will need War Cabinet approval to move forward while also racing against the clock to complete the campaign before a United Nations ceasefire is imposed. All makes for an interesting game.

No comments:

Post a Comment