5-52 Air Defense Case Study

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Fort Bliss, Texas, 2003 5-52 Air Defense Battalion prepared to depart for their one year tour to Iraq. 5-52’s main objective to support the initial invasion of Iraq by providing protection to the invading U.S. ground forces from airborne threats. The Patriot Air Defense System is seen as the perfect weapon system for the job and 5-52 as the best battalion to man it. 5-52 arrives in Iraq in March, 19, 2003 with five Patriot battery’s, they were quickly split into two separate teams, Alpha, Bravo, and Echo Battery are tasked to provide forward coverage force that would move with the allied ground forces. Charlie and Delta are attached to the 32nd AAMDC and is to remain in Kuwait to defend the city and all military assets in the area. While forward deployed the soldiers experienced major challenges with the equipment and its internal systems. Their radar system which was considered the best short range ballistic…show more content…
Echo proceeds forward steadily assuring that air coverage was provided at all times. On April 02, 2003 Echo provided air coverage while waiting for the other Air Defense Battery’s to relocate to a different area. Suddenly Echo experiences an enemy track on their radar screen with its target being the battery itself, Echo attempted to communicate with the enemy to verify, nevertheless communications failed. With no other options available Echo Battery fired two missiles and shot down the target. As Echo had fired Alpha Battery had time to further analyze the target, they had determined that it was in fact a friendly Navy F-18 which had just returned from a bombing run in Baghdad. The F-18’s Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) transponder codes had not been updated which caused a fail in communication between both
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