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Osprey Combat Aircraft No. 52

F-14 Tomcat Units of
Operation Iraqi Freedom


Tony Holmes

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S u m m a r y

Publisher and Catalogue Details: Osprey Combat Aircraft No. 52
F-14 Tomcat Units of Operation Iraqi Freedom
ISBN: 1841768030
Media and Contents: Soft cover, 96 pages
Price: GB£12.99 online from Osprey Publishing
Review Type: Preview and Extract
Advantages: TBA
Disadvantages: TBA
Recommendation: TBA


Osprey's F-14 Tomcat Units of Operation Iraqi Freedom
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Tony Holmes next title is F-14 Tomcat Units of Operation Iraqi Freedom, due for release in June 2005. Osprey Publishing has kindly provided permission to post the following extract and images from the book:

On 10 April 2003, Lt Cdrs Jeff Ohman and Mike Peterson were tasked with performing a Forward Air Control (Airborne) (FAC(A)) mission in central Baghdad in VF-2’s F-14D Tomcat ‘Bullet 100’ (BuNo 163894). The aircraft’s pilot, Lt Cdr Ohman, later recalled;

‘We launched off USS Constellation (CV-64) in the cover of darkness and proceeded to our area of responsibility. Once having completed our inflight refuelling, we checked in with the controller for tasking. There was a beautiful sunrise that morning as we approached the Baghdad. As the FAC(A) crew on scene, we were capable of coordinating multiple assets in support of the ground commander’s intent. Most of the time, we were the airborne eyes of the battlefield, enhancing the situational awareness of the ground-based troops. We could guide them to avoid areas of conflict when possible.



‘The Marines had already pushed into the city, concentrating on the military infrastructure of the country along the way. Every once in awhile, they would meet with pockets of resistance. That is what occurred on the morning of the 10th. While pressing through central Baghdad with a tank and some Humvees, the Marines noticed that they were taking fire. We were able to help them locate from which direction the rounds were coming, as well as the general area, so that they could focus their attention on eliminating the threat.

‘The two USAF A-10s that were on-station overhead were used as the low attack/gun strafing assets to keep the aggressors’ heads down. This enabled the ground troops to take up a better firing position. An artillery battery was also used to provide suppressing fire, coordinating its shelling with the attacks being made by the airborne assets on scene. Amongst the latter were two RAF Tornado GR 4s, which used their Enhanced Paveway II laser-guided bombs (LGBs) to disable the aggressors, while Army Blackhawk helicopters employed their door-mounted guns in between bombing strikes in an effort to suppress enemy small arms fire.



‘Once the resistance was surgically disabled, without inflicting any casualties on nearby civilians, the ground element was cleared to continue its progression into central Baghdad. With our assistance no longer required, we returned to a nearby tanker to top off our fuel. From there, we checked out with the overall airspace controller and returned the carrier’

(Cover artwork by Mark Postlethwaite)

F-14 Tomcat Units of Operation Iraqi Freedom
(Combat Aircraft 52)
Visit Osprey Publishing
Author: Tony Holmes
Illustrator: Jim Laurier
US Price: $19.95
UK Price: £12.99
Publisher: Osprey Publishing
Publish Date: June 10, 2005
Details: 96 pages; ISBN: 1841768030
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Preview Text and Images Copyright © 2005 by Osprey Publishing
Page Created 09 March, 2005
Last updated 08 March, 2005

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