Tags: America's Forum | Iraq | ISIS/Islamic State | ISIS | Islamic State | aircraft | Iraqi security forces

Ex-Army Pilot Barno: ISIS Training on Old Aircraft Not a Big Concern

By    |   Monday, 20 Oct 2014 10:26 AM

If the Islamic State (ISIS) is being trained by former Iraqi security forces on flying captured fighter jets, they would be no match for U.S. or coalition air forces, former Army helicopter pilot Amber Barno said Monday on "America’s Forum" on Newsmax TV.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has reported that Iraqi pilots who have joined the Islamic State in Syria are training the violent terror group to fly in three captured fighter jets.

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"ISIS has proven to be very effective on the ground, but when you switch it to an air dynamic, there's no comparison to what ISIS is attempting to do with training and a handful of possible pilots to whatever happens," said Barno, who is the spokeswoman for Concerned Veterans for America. "It's very amateur what they're doing right now. Never underestimate your enemy, but I don't see it as a significant threat at this time."

She suggested that having some of its members learn how to fly the outdated aircraft may be something the Islamic State wants to use in its propaganda campaign claiming they now have an "air force" but the "short, low-altitude flights" are indicative of very early pilot training.

It would take years for them to have the abilities of a U.S. or western air force pilot, according to Barno.

"In terms of basic piloting skills and flying on the controls, that part isn't necessarily the most difficult part of flying an aircraft," she noted.

"Most U.S. pilots that are military pilots, can take years. You start in very basic standard, simple aircraft flying and then you go into more advance systems. That goes into navigation, communication, weapons systems, and the technology that goes along with it. There's a lot of memorization, repetitive training that goes into becoming efficient at it, instead of just being able to wiggle the stick and fly the aircraft. We're not going to see any sort of air power out of ISIS, if they even make it that far."

The U.S. military would never allow the Islamic State to establish any type of air force, Barno assured, adding that the three planes they purportedly have possession of are late 1950 and 1970s technology. Additionally, those aircraft require maintenance, fuel, and parts.

"They're going to be going up against U.S. F/A-18E/F Super Hornets and F-22s. It's comparing apples and oranges. In terms of being effective at using those aircraft outside of some sort of suicide mission, there's no comparison when it comes to going up against any sort of western force or air coalition.

"Not only do you need people who are qualified to fly them, but you also have to have the people who know how to work on them and maintain them so that they are flyable. Also, you have to have some of the weapons systems, which are considerably outdated as well and we know ISIS supply chains have been significantly reduced. It's definitely going to be an uphill battle with this older aircraft that they're flying."

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If the Islamic State (ISIS) is being trained by former Iraqi security forces on flying captured fighter jets, they would be no match for U.S. or coalition air forces, former Army helicopter pilot Amber Barno said Monday on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV.
ISIS, Islamic State, aircraft, Iraqi security forces
3706
2014-26-20
Monday, 20 Oct 2014 10:26 AM
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