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Operation Unified Defender (SIADD)

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Operation Unified Defender
[[File:Operation Unified Defenders Logo (SIADD)|frameless|]]
Date April 12 – October 12, 2012
(5 months, 2 weeks and 6 days)
Place Syrian airspace and Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Syria
Status Decisive NATO victory
  • Overthrow of al-Assad government.
  • Free Syrian Army forces take control of all Syrian cities.
  • Bashar al-Assad is captured.
  • National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces assumes interim control of Syrian.
Belligerents
Coalition Forces
  • Flag of NATO NATO
    • Flag of the United States United States
    • Flag of the United Kingdom United Kingdom
    • Flag of France France
    • Flag of Turkey Turkey
    • Flag of Albania Albania
    • Flag of the Czech Republic Czech Republic
    • Flag of Belgium Belgium
    • Flag of Bulgaria Bulgaria
    • Flag of Canada Canada
    • Flag of Denmark Denmark
    • Flag of Germany Germany
    • Flag of Italy Italy
    • Flag of the Netherlands Netherlands
    • Flag of Norway Norway
    • Flag of Romania Romania
    • Flag of Poland Poland
  • Flag of Jordan Jordan
  • Flag of Kuwait Kuwait
  • Flag of Libya Libya
  • Flag of Qatar Qatar
  • Flag of Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia
  • Flag of Sweden Sweden
  • Flag of the United Arab Emirates UAE
Flag of Syria Syrian Arab Republic
  • Syrian Armed Forces
    • Syrian Army
    • Syrian Air Force
    • Syrian Navy
    • Republican Guard
  • General Security Directorate
  • Political Security Directorate
  • Shabiha
  • Lijan militias

Supported by:

  • Flag of Hezbollah Hezbollah
  • Flag of Iran Iran
Commanders and leaders
Political leadership:
Flag of NATO Anders Fogh Rasmussen
(NATO Secretary General)
Flag of the United States John McCain
(President of the United States)
Flag of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
(Prime Minister of Turkey)
Flag of the United Kingdom David Cameron
(Prime Minister of the United Kingdom)
Flag of France François Hollande
(President of France)
Flag of Italy Mario Monti
(Prime Minister of Italy)

Military leadership:
Flag of the United States ADM James G. Stavridis
(SACEUR)
Flag of Turkey GEN Necdet Özel
(Operational Commander)
Flag of the United States GEN Ralph J. Jodice
(Air Command)
Flag of France ADM Édouard Guillaud
(Maritime Command)

Political leadership:
Flag of Syria Bashar al-Assad
President of Syria
Commander-in-chief

Flag of Syria Fahd Jassem al-Freij
Deputy Commander in Chief
Deputy Prime Minister
Defense Minister

Flag of Syria Wael Nader al-Halqi
Prime Minister
Flag of Syria Ali Mamlouk
National Security Minister
Flag of Syria Mohammad al-Shaar (WIA)
Interior Minister

Military leadership:
Flag of Syria Ali Abdullah Ayyoub
Chief of Army Staff
Flag of Syria Maher al-Assad
Republican Guard Commander
Flag of Syria Namir al-Assad
Shabiha leader

Casualties and losses
Flag of the United States one USAF F-16C shot down
Flag of the United States one USAF A-10 Thunderbolt II shot down
Flag of the United States two aircrew killed
Flag of Norway one RNAF F-16AM shot down (pilot rescued)
Flag of France one FAF Mirage 2000D shot down (pilot killed)
Flag of Italy one AMX shot down (pilot rescued)
Flag of the United Kingdom two Tornado GR. Four shot down

Flag of Turkey one TAF F-16C damaged
Flag of Turkey one TAF F-4 shot down
Flag of Turkey two aircrew killed
Flag of Turkey five civilians killed
Flag of Turkey13 civilians and police wounded

Flag of Syria 930 tanks, armored personnel carriers, technicals, SAM trans/loader vehicles, and other vehicles destroyed or damaged
Flag of Syria 369 ammunition facilities
Flag of Syria 350 surface-to-air missile systems and anti-air guns hit
Flag of Syria 44 fighter jets (seven MiG 29, nine MiG 23, 24 MiG 25, four Su-24) destroyed
Flag of Syria 438 command and control buildings and other facilities
Flag of Syria 16 staging and firing areas
Flag of Syria Unknown number of soldiers killed or wounded


Operation Unified Defender was a NATO operation enforcing a naval arms embargo and a no-fly zone against Syria to prevent government forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad from carrying out air attacks on Anti-Assad forces. At a special meeting at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium on April 13, Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen announced that the operations will continue until the Syrian government agrees to a ceasefire, allow the deloyment of a UN-led peacekeeping force and agree to a political solution to the conflict.

The operation started on April 12, 2012 with a naval arms embargo and a no-fly zone and the air strikes against Syrian Armed Forces led by United States, France, United Kingdom, Italy and Turkey, under NATO command.

The arms embargo is carried out using mainly ships from NATO's Standing Maritime Group 1 and Standing Mine Countermeasures Group 1 already patrolling the Mediterranean Sea at the time of the resolution, enforced with additional ships, submarines and maritime surveillance aircraft from NATO members. They would "monitor, report and, if needed, interdict vessels suspected of carrying illegal arms or mercenaries".

The military operation, carried out without support from the United Nations Security Council, has been condemned by Russia, China, Iran and Venezuela, all allies of the Syrian government. Other countries in the Middle East have been more conflicted, with some showing support for the operation (mainly the Syrian rebels and Libya) and others protesting the NATO operation.

Background

Syrian conflict

International intervention

Command structure

Political direction is provided by the North Atlantic Council to the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe. The chain of command is from Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Admiral James G. Stavridis (US Navy), to General Necdet Özel (Turkish Army) acting as operational commander. From the operational level, command is further delegated to Admiral Édouard Guillaud (French Navy) for the naval operations and Commander of Allied Air Command Izmir, Lieutenant General Ralph J. Jodice II (US Air Force) for air operations.

Deployed Forces

Allied Maritime Command

  • Flag of Belgium Belgian Naval Component
    • BNS Narcis, a Tripartite-class minehunter
    • BNS Lobelia, a Tripartite-class minehunter
  • Flag of Bulgaria Bulgarian Navy
    • BGS Drazki, a Wielingen-class frigate
  • Flag of Canada Royal Canadian Navy
    • HMCS Charlottetown, a Halifax-class frigate
    • One × CH-124 Sea King anti-submarine helicopter
  • Flag of France French Navy
    • Landing helicopter dock Tonnerre (L9014)
      • 14 × Aérospatiale Gazelle
      • Four × Eurocopter Tiger
      • Two × Eurocopter Puma
    • Two × Atlantique 2 signals intelligence aircraft based at Naval Air Station Sigonella in Sicily, Italy
    • Task Force 473
      • Aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle (R91)
        • 12 × Rafale M fighters
        • Six × Super-Etendard strike aircraft
        • Two × E-2C airborne early warning aircraft
        • Two × Dauphin multipurpose helicopters
        • Two × Alouette III utility helicopters
        • French Air Force detachment of a Puma and two × Caracal transport helicopters
    • Anti-air frigate Jean Bart (D615)
    • Frigate Dupleix (D641)
    • Frigate Aconit (F713)
    • Frigate Chevalier Paul (D621)
    • Frigate Georges Leygues (D640)
    • Frigate Courbet (F712) (Returned to France)
    • Replenishment tanker Meuse (A607)
    • Nuclear attack submarine Améthyste (S605)
  • Flag of Italy Italian Navy
  • NMM Cavour aircraft carrier with
    • 11 × AV-8B Harrier II V/STOL ground-attack aircraft
    • Four × AW101 Merlin anti-submarine warfare helicopter
  • NMM San Marco, a San Giorgio amphibious transport dock
    • Boarding teams from the San Marco Regiment
    • Two x NH90 Helicopter
    • Two x AW101 Merlin anti-submarine warfare helicopter
  • NMM Caio Duilio, an Horizon Class Destroyer
  • NMM Espero, a Maestrale class Frigate
  • NMM Aliseo, a Maestrale class Frigate
  • NMM Etna, an Etna class auxiliary ship
  • Flag of the Netherlands Royal Netherlands Navy
    • HNLMS Haarlem, an Alkmaar-class minehunter
  • Flag of Norway Royal Norwegian Navy
    • KNM Fridtjof Nansen, an Fridtjof Nansen-class frigate
    • KNM Roald Amundsen, an Fridtjof Nansen-class frigate
  • Flag of Romania Romanian Navy
    • Regele Ferdinand, a Type 22 frigate
  • Flag of Turkey Turkish Navy
    • TCG Giresun, a G class frigate
    • TCG Gemlik, a G class frigate
    • TCG Yıldırım, a Yavuz-class frigate
    • TCG Yıldıray, a Type 209 submarine
    • TCG Akar, a fleet support ship
  • Flag of the United Kingdom Royal Navy
    • HMS Brocklesby (Hunt Class MCMV)
    • HMS Ocean (Landing Platform Helicopter)
    • HMS Albion (Albion class landing platform dock)
    • HMS HMS Cornwall (Type 42 destroyer)
    • HMS Sutherland (Type 23 frigate)
    • RFA Fort Rosalie (Stores ship)
    • RFA Wave Knight (Tanker)
  • Flag of the United States United States Navy
    • USS Mount Whitney (LCC-20), the command ship of the United States Sixth Fleet
      • Carrier Strike Group Eight
        • USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69), a Nimitz class aircraft carrier
          • 15 × F/A-18C Hornets of VFA-83 (Strike Fighter Squadron 83)
          • 22 × F/A-18F Super Hornets of VFA-103 (Strike Fighter Squadron 103)
          • 21 × F/A-18C Hornets of VFA-131 (Strike Fighter Squadron 131)
          • 23 × F/A-18F Super Hornets of VFA-143 (Strike Fighter Squadron 143)
        • USS Hué City (CG-66), a Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser
        • USS Farragut (DDG-99), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
        • USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
        • USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG-81), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
      • USS John S. McCain (DDG-52), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
      • USS Laboon (DDG-58), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
      • USS McFaul (DDG-74), an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer
      • USS Norfolk (SSN-714), a Los Angeles-class nuclear attack submarine
      • USS Charlotte (SSN-766), a second Los Angeles-class nuclear attack submarine
      • The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group, consisting of:
        • USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship
        • USS Ponce (LPD-15), an Austin-class amphibious transport dock
          • Embarked 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit with 400 U.S. Marines from 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, Camp Lejeune, N.C.
      • USS Florida (SSGN-728), an Ohio-class cruise missile submarine
      • USNS Kanawha, a Henry J. Kaiser-class replenishment oiler
      • USNS Lewis and Clark, a Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship
      • USNS Robert E. Peary, a Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship
      • Five EA-18G Growler electronic warfare aircraft operating out of NAS Sigonella and Aviano Air Base
      • One EP-3E ELINT aircraft
      • Two P-3C Update 3 maritime surveillance aircraft
      • Two P-3C AIP maritime surveillance aircraft
      • Navy SEALs of the United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group (DEVGRU)

Allied Air Command

  • Flag of NATO NATO
    • E-3 airborne early warning and control (AWACS) aircraft
  • Flag of Belgium Belgian Air Component
    • Six x F-16AM 15MLU fighter aircraft operating from Akritiri Air Base, Cyprus
  • Flag of Canada Royal Canadian Air Force
    • 12 × CF-188 Hornet multirole fighter jets operating from Eskişehir Air Base, Turkey
    • Two × CC-177 Globemaster strategic transport aircraft
    • Two × CC-130J Hercules tactical transport aircraft
    • Two × CC-150 Polaris air-to-air refueling tankers
    • Two × CP-140 Aurora maritime patrol aircraft
    • Canadian Special Operations Forces Command
      • Joint Task Force 2
  • Flag of the Czech Republic Czech Air Force
    • Six x Saab JAS 39 Gripen fighter jets operating from Eskişehir Air Base, Turkey
  • Flag of Denmark Royal Danish Air Force
    • Six x F-16AM 15MLU fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • One x C-130J-30 tactical transport aircraft
  • Flag of Germany German Air Force
    • PAC-3 Patriot surface-to-air missile systems from Flugabwehrraketengruppe 22 of Flugabwehrraketengeschwader 5 deployed in southern Turkey
  • Flag of France French Air Force
    • Eight × Rafale fighters operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
    • Eight × Mirage 2000-5 fighters operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
    • Six × Mirage 2000D fighter-bombers operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
    • Two × Mirage F1CR reconnaissance aircraft operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • Six × C135 aerial refueling aircraft
    • One x E-3F AWACS aircraft operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • One x C-160G SIGINT electronic surveillance aircraft
    • Commando Parachutiste de l'Air companies 20 and 30 forward deployed to Solenzara Air Base, Corsica
  • Flag of Italy Italian Air Force
    • Four x Tornado ECR SEAD fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • Four x Tornado IDS fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • Four x Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • Six x AMX Ghibli fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • One x Boeing KC 767 aerial refueling aircraft operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
  • Flag of Jordan Royal Jordanian Air Force
    • Six x F-16 MLU fighter jets operating from Amman Air Base, Jordan
  • Flag of Kuwait Kuwait Air Force
    • Four x F/A-18 Hornet fighter jets operating from Tabuk Air Base, Saudi Arabia
  • Flag of Libya Libyan Air Force
    • Six x MiG-23BN fighter jets operating from Amman Air Base, Jordan
  • Flag of the Netherlands Royal Netherlands Air Force
    • Six x F-16AM 15MLU fighter jets operating from Konya Air Base, Turkey
  • Flag of Norway Royal Norwegian Air Force
    • 12 x F-16AM 15MLU fighter jets operating from Konya Air Base, Turkey
    • One x C-130J-30 tactical transport aircraft supporting the Norwegian forces.
  • Flag of Poland Poland Air Force
    • Six x F-16 Jastrząb fighter jets operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
  • Flag of Qatar Emiri Air Force
    • Six x Mirage 2000-5EDA fighters jets operating from Tabuk Air Base, Saudi Arabia
    • Two x C-17 Globemaster III strategic transport aircraft
  • Flag of Saudi Arabia Royal Saudi Air Force
    • 12 x Boeing F-15S Strike Eagle fighter jets operating from Tabuk Air Base, Saudi Arabia
    • 12 x Panavia Tornado IDS ground attack aircraft operating from Tabuk Air Base, Saudi Arabia
    • One x Boeing KE-3A tanker aircraft
  • Flag of Spain Spanish Air Force
    • Six x EF-18AM Hornet fighters jets
  • Flag of Sweden Royal Swedish Air Force
    • Ten JAS 39C Gripen fighter jets operating from Souda Air Base, Crete
    • One x Lockheed Tp-84T C-130 Hercules configured as aerial tanker
    • One x Saab 340 AEW&C
  • Flag of Turkey Turkish Air Force
    • Ten x F-16C Fighting Falcon multi-role fighters operating from Eskişehir Air Base, Turkey
    • 15 x F-16C Fighting Falcon multi-role fighters operating from Konya Air Base, Turkey
    • 15 x F-16C Fighting Falcon multi-role fighters operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
    • One x KC-135 Stratotanker aerial tanker
  • Flag of the United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates Air Force
    • Six x F-16E/F Block 60 Falcon fighter jets operating from Amman Air Base, Jordan
    • Six x Dassault Mirage 2000 fighter jets operating from Amman Air Base, Jordan
  • Flag of the United Kingdom Royal Air Force
    • 18 x Panavia Tornado GR4A operating from Akritiri Air Base, Cyprus
    • Ten x Eurofighter Typhoons operating from Eskişehir Air Base, Turkey
    • Two x VC-10 tanker aircraft
    • Four x Agusta Westland Apache attached from the Army Air Corps (United Kingdom)
    • Three x E3D Sentry surveillance aircraft
  • Flag of the United States United States Air Force
    • Three × B-2 Spirit stealth bombers operating from Whiteman AFB
    • 26 × F-15E Strike Eagle strike fighters operating from Konya Air Base, Turkey
    • 38 × F-16C Fighting Falcon multirole fighters operating from Malatya Erhaç Air Base, Turkey
    • 14 × A-10 Thunderbolt II close air support aircraft of the 81st Fighter Squadron operating from Akritiri Air Base, Cyprus
    • Two x HH-60 Pave Hawk combat search and rescue helicopters from RAF Lakenheath operating from USS Ponce (LPD-15).
    • EC-130H electronic warfare (communications jamming) aircraft
    • EC-130J psychological operations aircraft
    • Lockheed AC-130 Aerial Gunship
    • Global Hawk unmanned aerial surveillance vehicle
    • Lockheed U-2S Reconnaissance aircraft
    • MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV)

Operations

Operation Unified Defender

The no-fly zone over Syria as well as bases and warships which were involved in the intervention.

Syrian Civil War (SIADD)

The course of the war.

  Held by anti-Assad forces by 10th April.
  Contested areas between April and June.
  Captured by anti-Assad forces by August 1.
  Captured by anti-Assad forces by 1st October.

Norwegian F-16 during Operation Unified Defender (SIADD)

A Norwegian F-16 at Souda Air Base on Crete.

USS Farragut Tomahawk launch Operation Unified Defender (SIADD)

U.S. attacking with the launch of a Tomahawk missile from the USS Farragut on April 12, 2012.

USAF F-16s during Operation Unified Defender (SIADD)

A USAF F-16 of the 31st Fighter Wing U.S. Air Force F-16 jet fighter takes off at the Aviano NATO air base, in Aviano, Italy.

RAF Tornado GR4 during Operation Unified Defender (SIADD)

A RAF Tornado GR4 headed for Syria is taking off from Eskişehir Air Base in Turkey.

Turkish F-16 during Operation Unified Protector (SIADD)

A Turkish Air Force F-16C headed for Syria is taking off from Eskişehir Air Base in Turkey.

FA-18 on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower during Operation Unified Protector (SIADD)

A F/A-18F Super Hornet takes off from USS Dwight D. Eisenhower.

USAF F-15 during Operation Unified Protector (SIADD)

A USAF F-15 jet fighter maneuvers as another F-15 takes off from the NATO air base in Aviano, Italy.

Syrian tank in Aleppo destroyed by NATO aircraft (SIADD)

A pro-Assad T-72 tank destroyed by NATO aircraft in Aleppo.

Syrian tanks in Homs destroyed by NATO aircraft (SIADD)

Syrian tanks destroyed by RAF Tornado GR4s in the outskirts of Homs.

DAY 1: 12 April 2012

The first main strike involved the launch of 96 Tomahawk cruise missiles from US and UK ships against shoreline air defenses of the Assad regime.

Six French Rafale fighter/bombers attacked two artillery batteries and destroy eight pro Assad tanks outside Yabrud.

Three RAF Tornados conduct a bombing run against two armoured vehicles and three tanks outside Hama.

Eight U.S. F-16C fighter aircraft conducted two separate bombing runs on multiple targets south of Homs, destroyed 12 Syrian tanks.

Three Italian Tornado IDS fighter jets accompanied by three Italian Eurofighter Typhoon as fighter escorts, conducted two bombing runs against two pro-Assad munitions depot near Latakia.


DAY 2: 13 April 2012

Three A-10 Thunderbolt II close air support aircraft destroying ten Syrian Tanks outside Damasco.

Four RAF Tornados destroyed six pro-Assad armoured vehicles near Damasco.

Four Italian Tornado ECR fighter/bombers conducts a suppression of enemy air defenses mission (SEAD) against three Syrian radar and SAM stations, using AGM-88 Harm missiles.

See also


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