Cameroonian soldiers in a Landcruiser gun truck armed with a Chinese-made Type 58 twin 14.5mm AAMG system.

Troops guarding the 2,000km-long border face a difficult task. Cameroon’s military has called for international assistance


by Alex Crawford
Special Correspondent in Cameroon
20 June, 2014

Boko Haram militancy is spreading across West African nations much like the ISIS fundamentalism terrorising Syria and Iraq, Cameroon has warned.

Lieutenant Colonel Didier Badjeck, the country’s defence ministry spokesman,told Sky News the militant Islamic sect could only be stopped by the combined efforts of Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger, as well as more international involvement.

Sky News was given exclusive access to Cameroon’s elite military rapid response unit, the Battalion D’Intervention Rapide, or BIR, and travelled to the north of the country to see the soldiers’ operations on the border with Nigeria.

A multi-national team is still hunting more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram from their school in Chibok in northeast Nigeria on April 14.The schoolgirls are thought to have been split into several groups and some intelligence sources fear at least one of the groups may have been smuggled across the border into Cameroon.

Hundreds of Cameroon’s top soldiers have been sent to the border to hunt for the missing girls and curb the Boko Haram militancy. The militants repeatedly attack border communities, destroying schools and burning homes inside Cameroon.

The huge border, which is more than 2,000km (1,243 miles) long, is porous and, from our evidence, exceedingly difficult to police. The terrain is rocky, in some cases mountainous, undeveloped and remote. Even with hundreds of troops stationed along it, they appear to be having limited success.

A number of the border villages have been abandoned by terrified communities who have fled Africa’s largest economy to take refuge in impoverished neighbouring Cameroon.

In Camp Minawao, about 5,000 people are taking shelter. Sky News’ Cameroonian translator shook his head in disbelief as he saw the camp for the first time. Refugee Aga Musa said he had crossed over the border with his eight children because “there was no one to protect us” from Boko Haram.

In northeast Nigeria, schools have been closed because of the insecurity caused by Boko Haram, whose name means Western education is forbidden. In the Cameroon camp, children run to school where they can learn in safety – or have done so far.

Musa Lava, who has spent a year in the camp and is one of a team of teachers there, begged soldiers to guard them. “We are worried the militants are going to come here,” he said. “They are spreading and they are going to come here soon too.”


About beegeagle

BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. beegeagle says:

    Well, here we go. All week, I have been advocating for a wholesale step-up by Nigerian forces to Landcruiser gun-trucks and BigFoot MRAPs armed with ZPU/Type 58 14.5mm AAMGs. This is with a view towards checkmating the threat posed by BH technicals which are armed with DShK 12.7mm HMGs.

    Now, for a comparatively inexperienced military, one has to be impressed with the correct thinking behind this robustness seen in this Cameroonian gun truck.

    First of all, notice that is a Landcruiser which is fully adaptible to sahelian and forest belt operations, unlike the Hilux and Ford Ranger which have disagreeably swamped our sahelian/desert NE frontlines but which are decidedly better suited for operations in urban and coastal areas.

    Secondly and against my wildest imagination, the Cameroonian gun truck carries not just one but TWIN Type 58 14.5mm cannons. Now, BH have only ever been seen in technicals armed with single DShK 12.7mm HMGs. Assuming that these Cameroonian soldiers are adept at doing their thing, HOW will a BH technical not get cut to pieces if they are foolhardy enough to go against this twin 14.5mm HMG-armed Landcruiser?

    Men are sometimes the architects of their fate. Outcomes are predetermined by the choices which we make. “Na firewood wey person gather for daytime, e go use warm bodi for night”. If Cameroon, which is a secondary theatre of BH activity, know that 14.5mm HMGs are the way to suppress BH 12.7mm HMGs, it makes you wonder why a Nigeria whose widely travelled and battle experienced army has felt the wrath of guerrillas wielding 12,7mm and 14.5mm HMGs as far afield as Somalia, Liberia and Sierra Leone, CONTINUES to launch troops wielding no more than hopeless 7.62mm GPMGs into battle against terrorists armed with DShK 12.7mm HMGs. It is befuddling to say the least.

    Let me restate my belief in the fact that we need to acquire about 500 units of Type 58 single-barreled and double-barreled 14.5mm HMGs for the sole purpose of having them mounted on our LANDCRUISER gun trucks and BigFoot MRAPs. For a start, we could make 250 units of Landcruiser gun-trucks armed with single-barreled 14.5mm AAMGs and 50 additional units of same which will be armed with TWIN 14.5mm AAMGs.

    For the impressive and solid behemoths that are the BigFoot MRAPs, we need to see two single-barreled 14.5mm weapon stations, fore and aft, on each one of those machines.

    We restate our belief that therein possibly lies some of the game changers in our War on Terror which have thus far seemingly been overlooked by those tasked with provisioning for the war effort.

  2. beegeagle says:

    An Iraqi POLICEMAN on guard at a SCHOOL in Basra is seen in a gun truck armed with a ZPU-1 14.5mm anti-aircraft machine gun.

    Why are so many of our own SOLDIERS rolling and pulling security duties in COIN operations using mere 7.62mm GPMGs? Would Chibok Girls Secondary School have been overrun if we had three of NA 14.5mm AAMG-armed Landcruiser gun trucks defending that place, aided by Police CTU wielding GPMGs?

  3. WachanGuy says:

    BH coming across such a weapon in NA and NPF use must equal shredded vulture feed IMO. As for the Cameroonians and Iraqi police wielding what we need but have refused to purchase/field, let our military planners and financiers please do the needful in face of all this evidence. We have done well so far, let’s round this up with a resoundingly decisive Nigerian(no glory-hunters) victory!

  4. Augustine says:

    Oga Beegeagle, Nigerian army I guess, views those type of Gun Trucks as rebel style and ‘unprofessional’ for a conventional army. Our British military academy background training and doctrine does not tell us to use them, so we prefer to drive Cobra’s around with 7.62mm guns and get killed like decent men, by ruffian illiterate Bokos driving around in 14,5mm gun Toyotas.

    We choose to die like ‘fine gentlemen’ in a fine looking text book army.

    • doziex says:

      You are right. We got two problems here.

      (1) A poor culture of innovation in the NA. Soldiers should be able to wield solutions together at base level.
      When the Americans were blindsided by IEDs in iraq, front line troops began to wield on armor to humvees as stop gap measures.
      40 yrs ago in the Vietnam war, the huey UH-1 helicopter, was turned into a makeshift attack helicopter, at the front, not in the factory.

      I have been advocating for more than 2 years, for NA to mount whatever anti aircraft artillery they have on trucks, or other mobile platforms.

      (2) As you said, I think NA thinks they are too sophisticated for technicals.
      So they would rather fall victim to technicals, than innovative to counter it.

      About 3 yrs ago, NA and other ecowas countries travelled to burkinafaso for an ecomil exercise.
      The ghanaians skipped that meeting. However, all the sahelian countries, including mali came with desert ready ford rangers with dshk or zsu-23-2 guns mounted, only NA arrived in brand new hilux trucks and 5 ton troop carriers.

      When lined up with the nigeriens, it was clear that the NA commanders were thinking logistics, whereas the nigerien soldiers were thinking combat.

      Technicals and guntrucks have been a staple amongst african armies since the toyota war in chad.
      The unita rebels used it to great effect against the FAPLA and the cubans.

      But it was the somalian civil war that brought the gun truck to maturity. The somalis simply mounted all their decaying soviet armory on pick up trucks, and the western press referred to them as technicals.

      But to give credit where it’s due, the British SAS came up with this concept in north africa during the second world war.
      The SAS mounted the high caliber machine guns in figher aircraft on jeeps, and they used them to raid german airfields, and destroy aircrafts and fuel dumps on the ground.

      • doziex says:

        Also, the serbs in the balkan wars, used very high caliber triple A to devastating effect.

        While NA needs an urgent cash infusion, some off these problems can be solved by us been innovative like other armies.
        After initially sending units that looked good, but where not combat ready to mali, some one in NA decided to do the right thing, and weld some machine gun mounts onto some newly purchased desert ready ford rangers.

        Mounting 107mm multiple barrel rocket launchers, recoiless rifles and heavy caliber AA guns on trucks as seen in libya, syria, iraq and throughout africa should have come naturally to a cash strapped NA.

        I mean we already copied the pakistanis in using thin skinned hiluxes as frontline patrol vehicles.

        NA essentially denied it’s troops efficacy in offense and defense.

  5. Are James says:

    Antidote for the poison. Nigeria go for them in hundreds.

  6. asorockweb says:

    The story of 2 photos

    1) Twin 14.5mm HMG with optics – GOOD, emphasis on the optics.

    2) Dodge Ram armed with 14.5mm HMG with no optics – BAD, the gun is so large the officer has no room to properly fire the weapon if it is aimed to the sides (notice how he is standing at the very edge of the truck).

    If the Iraqi police officer was stationed in Mosul, he would have been the first to rip his uniform off – big guns will not protect you from small bullets.

    A 12.7mm HMG with optics has a far better effective range than a 14.5mm HMG with no optics.
    That means that a vehicle armed with a 12.7mm HMG with optics will out-gun the gun-truck armed with 14.5mm HMG with no optics.

    Having said that, it would be cool to see an IGIRIGI with a 14.5mm HMG remote station or turret – the IGIRIGI IFV (with armour enough to protect against 12.7mm HMG rounds)

    • Are James says:

      No. 2) I also know the Dodge Ram suspension and chassis will not take the cumulative recoil effect of firing this calibre of weapon for more than 3 months. So a lot of these vehicles are low lifecycle solutions. Use and throw away. Which provokes the question about funding for some of the militant groups using these vehicles in the middle east.

      • asorockweb says:

        The Sunni militias are/were well funded by Gulf state patrons – the idea was to takeover Syria and denied Iran their last ally.

        Now, ISIL has enough cash to fight for a few years, even if all funds are cut off.

        I also wonder about the vibrational effect and the metal fatigue at the points where the gun mount meets the truck bed or chassis – but I don’t have enough information on how these guns are mounted.

    • beegeagle says:

      Brother, I have yet to see any Nigerian Army 12.7mm HMG-armed gun trucks featuring gun sights. However they are getting by, I will not know.

      What I am not interested in is having our guys meeting BH guys in battle on an equal footing or worse, a disadvantaged position which is what this effusive use of mere GPMGs entails.

      To call a spade by its given name, if they arrive with shotguns, we have to appear with AK47 rifles. If the bring the DShK, we have to face them with longer range and higher impact 14.5mm weapons.

      The Chadians and Sudanese already field DShK 12.7mm and ZPU 14.5mm weapons on Landcruiser gun trucks which also do not have optical sights. If BH get their hands on 14.5mm AAMGs, they will unleash them on our troops with or without optical aids.

      “Be prepared”…tis the Boy Scouts marching song 🙂

      • asorockweb says:

        I agree with you about the need to out gun BH.

        But what is the easiest implementation?

        Option 1
        New 14.5mm HMGs – probably requiring with new mounts?

        Option 2
        Optics for existing 12.7mm HMGs – also replacing GPMGs with 12.7mm HMGs.

        The rebel groups that use the 14.5mm HMGs in their trucks use those guns the same way a professional army will use artillery – they stand off from a target, open fire, and then rely on a spotter to help them adjust their fire.

  7. xnur44 says:

    I have not missed the euphoria on this blog, but I have to announce that my second son has been born. Shall be back soonest.

  8. freeegulf says:

    Wow you have been truly missed air marshal xnur44. Congrats on the newborn. good fellow

  9. beegeagle says:

    CONGRATULATIONS :-). Another Golden Eaglet..

  10. beegeagle says:

    Wow, that is TRUE! Oga RKA, that 4G jet in his avatar window has never been there in all 4+ years that XNur and I have been here.

    Coming at this time when impeccable sources are reporting the delivery of 4G jets to Nigeria, I take it as given that Oga XNur44 is in bullish mood. A new era has dawned for the NAF. We now own 4G jets.

    Mek e do com tel us which wan exactly. Gbosa! E don hapun..

  11. beegeagle says:

    Aaaah..AIR EXPO 2014. We could not have wished for a better way to celebrate..ALX Super Tucano, 4G jet, Mi-35M attack helics, Mi-171Sh Terminator assault helics – all freshly acquired.

    Please, if they are able to add either L15 Falcon or Yak-130 to the haul, we shall not complain o.

    It is getting really delightful now. All our campaigning since 2009-2010..MRAP delivered, oceangoing vessels delivered, ALX Super Tucano delivered, 4G jet delivered, useable number of attack and assault helics delivered. Even our precis on the need for a new army division has since come to pass.

    We are winning 🙂

  12. Henry says:

    Congratulations Oga xnur44. May the child grow up in a prosperous, peaceful boring nigeria.

  13. Triggah says:

    Big guns take up room so they need big trucks like the pingauzer, Otherwise you won’t have enough room for quick maneovers. Both pictures shows how precarious those soldiers sit. Why not go with pingauzer’s armed with twin 14.5mm AAG covering hilux and ford rangers mounting 12.7 HMG’s and anti-tank RPG’s. The 14.5’s providing suppressive fire while the 12.7’s and RPG’s tactically maneovers for a closer kill. 12.7 mm is lethal to any soft skinned vehicle.

  14. asorockweb says:

    “Witnesses also described seeing Nigerian air force planes and soldiers taking part in a counter-offensive.”

    I wonders which Air Force platforms were used.

    Expect a high BH casualty number from this engagement.

  15. jimmy says:

    On the delivery of your Son May he grow up to be a strong Son. our own 4 star general in the making. Hmmm .Now I am ANXIOUS …… real ANXIOUS that logo change means something. 🙂
    The Chinese have said it best” May you live in interesting times” Gentlemen we are on the dawn of a new era. I truly believe that.

  16. asorockweb says:

    Oga Xnur. Congrats.

    Xnur’s avatar photo looks like the close-in shot of the outside of a MiG 29/35 cockpit.

  17. beegeagle says:

    Su-30MK is it. Marked “502” which seems to be the call sign of a Russian demo unit

    Sir Gbash, take note of the “*K” o. I say so because the precise details have to be known this week.

    • gbash10 says:

      General Beeg,502 MK is the first Sukhoi SU-30 delivered to the PLA Air Force during a particular Zhuhia Airshow in China.
      Oga Asorock,I have been reviewing all my fighter jets pix on my pc,and the nearest are the SU-27/30/35 and MiG-29/35 because of the arrangement of the electro-optics on the starboard side and the refuelling probe on the port side in front of the cockpit which is unique to Russian fighter jets,while the Chinese Shenyang J-11B(Sino-Flanker) has its electro-optic at the centre, outside the front of the cockpit.

    • beegeagle says:

      Who can tell, AOk? I have mulled these things off this board with Russ and Mighty Yagz.

      The six units of Su-30K not snapped up by Angola supposedly went to an unnamed country whose identity has been profoundly codified. We have checked out all Su-27/30 users, no repeat orders known. Possible takers hitherto mentioned, such as Ethiopia, Sudan, Yemen and Vietnam are not in the loop.

      What we do recall is that for some unfathomable reason which might not be unconnected with a big ticket sale, the President of BVST Belarus visited Nigeria during Q4 2011 immediately after news of the availability of the Su-30Ks got into the public domain.

      But we must state that Nigeria tightly guard news of her military acquisitions in a way which is possibly unsurpassed on the continent and that makes news of anything about arms exports to her, plausible.

      Inductions which have lately come to light but which eluded the global arms trade loggers include the acquisition of BigFoot MRAPs, Streit Spartan Mk.III APCs and ALX Super Tucano aircraft. Now, we are reliably informed that a new 4G jet is flying in our airspace as we write this. Put nothing beyond Nigeria’s ability in sneak acquisitions.

      Whether we got the most cherished mix of Su-30sand JF17s or JF17s alone or the Kfir Block 60, we shall find out all of that in the days to come.

      One more thing. I am growing ever more certain that we got a gift of a ship that is a real game changer from China. The FG announced the gift of NNS Okpabana and the acquisition of the P18N OPVs. Somehow, with the gift of a Chinese COMBAT VESSEL, they have suddenly gone taciturn. Methinks it is something as serious as a frigate and that is why everyone has hushed up until the ship is underway to Nigeria.

  18. Tope says:

    Congrats Xnurr 44, May your child grow to be a blessing for you and your family, as Oga beeg has said lets get the 14.5mm AAMG mounted on LandcruisersserIFV IAPC APC and MRAP.

    As for Air Expo has the Airforce released a new date…I urge we all go n get lots of pics… contact confirms there is an upgrade of the Alphas goin currently, as well as some Charlies…..he will get back to me on the 4G jet but says everything is hush hush this days.

  19. AOk says:

    Presuming that these are the K models that India returned almost a decade ago, NAF should have carried out their due diligence and ascertained that the problems which caused the Indians to return the jets in the first place, have been rectified and upgrades installed.

    These were mainly engine problems around the quality of the alloys used in production

    So I’m expecting to see canards and TVS externally and a whole plethora of new internal systems.

    Plus side for Beeg is that the planes hopefully could be used with a buddy refuelling
    (Su30s refuelling other Su30s) system (lots of practice to perfect) which could give a true 1000 nm combat range.

    There’s a huge variety of weapons for Su30s from a wide host of vendors so hopefully we won’t have the current Iraqi problem where they are out of Hellfire missiles and the Yanks are playing patacake.

    We wait to see.

  20. Akin Oges says:

    Congrats Oga Xnurr. Oga Beeg, our boys need the 14.5mm on the Landcruisers and Cobras. And the standard weapon in each section should now be dominated by GPMGs and man-portable grenade launchers. The authorities are paying attention now it appears; and that is credit to the tireless efforts of yourself and the gang here. I salute the courage of our boys at the frontline. Stay Blessed Sir.

  21. beegeagle says:

    Oga Akin, you com go AWOL small sha :). Welcome back, bro

  22. Akin Oges says:

    Make you nor vex my General. Nar work Ooo… But I dey follow bumper to bumper; this Blog keeps my sane my Oga. I hope you sweet Sir?

  23. beegeagle says:

    About time. The NAF is long overdue for a tsunamic makeover. Dem don too lag behind, thanks to the unsettling habit of previous NAF chiefs who always carried on like all was well and even boasted about being able to defend Nigeria against all foes.

    Thankfully, the current CAS has gone stark about the yawning gaps in our air asset base and that is likelier to yield dividends. Check out the NN whose Captains and Admirals are “always complaining 🙂 “. They have every reason to. A Navy which had two frigates and four corvettes in 1990 should have gone further than where we are today. YET the NN have grown from 7,000 in 1990 to 15,000+ today.

    NAF don soji and have picked up the gauntlet and there is every reason to be forthright about the capability gaps in the NAF. A 9,000-man Airforce which had 33 MiG 21 MF/BIS and 18 Jaguar jets…not to mention 12 Aermacchi MB 339s, 24 A-Jet and 24 L39 Albatros is TODAY 15,000+ strong yet boast only a quarter of the interceptor/FGA airframes which she had in 1990? What is cheery about that? Sanctions or no sanctions, we have roundly failed our airforce and need to get cracking on the job.

    Between 1967 when we got our first combat jets and 1975 when Gowon left office, eight years mind you, the NAF placed orders for and/or took delivery of approximately 90-100 new or used combat jets as follows: MiG 15s, MiG 17s, MiG 19s, MiG 21s, IL 28 Beagle and L29 Delfin. We have fallen way behind by every definition of the word ‘slackness’.

    So let everyone “complain”. Na pikin wey stretch hand dem dey kari. Enough said.

  24. beegeagle says:


    ABUJA, June 23 (Xinhua)

    Dozens of people were killed on Monday afternoon following a bomb explosion in a medical school in Nigeria’s northwestern state of
    Kano, witnesses and rescue officials said.

  25. Augustine says:

    Oga AOK, some reports also say the ex-Indian Su-30 Flankers also miss the vector thrusts too, and that reduces all the extraordinary magical snake dancing in the air.

    If we can add both canards and vector thrust plus a 400km range radar, NAF don get world class fighter jet + mini AWACS be dat o!

    However, if we buy it as it is without those two parts added, I will still kiss the Su-30 because it is 10 times better than our current F-7.

    If that jet is not for Nigeria, it could be any African country, so good luck to whoever it is !

    • AOk says:

      @ Chief Augustine
      I like your ‘snake dancing’ analogy! Within the euphoria of the expected Sukhois, I’m more concerned about it’s integration into NAF systems and combat strategy. With or without the canards and tvs, we need an aircraft that is fit for purpose.
      Researching it’s mission readiness/ servicability across many air forces, is not always great, due to failures of engines, HUDS and MFDs during flight . A plus are the dual engines as a safety, so it hopefully can be brought back to base on one in case of failure.
      The numbers also will be interesting as I don’t think it will be more than a squadron.
      We would have to link up with the indian Air Force, (if possible after our dalliance with the Pakinstanis for the F7) as no other nation has more Sukhoi operational experience.

    • Are James says:

      The canards are one leg of a three legged list of problem areas for the SU 30MK Flanker, the others are thrust vectoring and the fly by wire system. I would prefer that the canards and thrust vectoring system which are the things that actually make this aircraft the most manoeuvrable in the world to be upgrades that come later if they have not yet been fixed comprehensively at this time. Too many crashes have resulted from issues with these syatems.

  26. beegeagle says:

    ELSEWHERE and in response by the OBJ Administration’s plan to have the NA downsized to 50,000 men as a prelude to attaining true professionalism, BEEGEAGLE WROTE:


    What is the magical correlation between 50,000 troops and professionalism? Most countries with a less than a quarter, a third or half of Nigeria’s population have larger armies – Algeria, Morocco, Burma, Turkey, Iraq, Ethiopia, The Philippines, Iran, Egypt BECAUSE there is correlation between geography, demography and manning. I do not see how the disproportionately large sizes of the Egyptian and Turkish armies have hampered their quest for professionalism.

    As of 1988, the defunct Directorate of Foods, Roads and Rural Infrastructure enumerated 94,000 communities in Nigeria. Compared to that and the last time I checked, the DRC had 40,000 communities, Ethiopia 45,000 and the pre-partition Sudan had 35,000 communities.

    We face challenges of insurgency in which man have to be put on the ground. NORTHERN NIGERIA is equal in size(slightly larger as a matter of fact) to Benin, Togo, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire put together OR FOUR times the size of Liberia and Sierra Leone put together.Half of that huge swathe of territory(equal in size to Germany) has been critically affected by insurgent attacks. There is a critical requirement for BOOTS on the ground since these chaps strike where they sense a vacuum.

    It is the same everywhere with COIN-CT operations. In Liberia we had a peak deployment of 13,000 troops, in Sierra Leone it was 19,000 men. That is 32,000 men to man an area the size of Scotland and England combined and there was still a deficit. I just said that Northern Nigeria is four times as large as the combined area of Liberia and Sierra Leone!

    The insurgent knuckleheads will attack every undefended church, every isolated police post, every vulnerable church and the COIN-CT operations are beyond what the Police alone can handle insofar as they only field rifles whereas the insurgents have RPGs, GPMGs, are massively IED-reliant and use suicide bombers.

    In the deep south, the Niger Delta is a labyrinth of 3014 creeks and waterways with 5,000 miles of pipelines, hundreds of remote flowstations and installations scattered across a daunting maritime area the size of Sierra Leone.

    The creeks call for patrols by triads and quartets of troops in river gunboats, the multimillion dollar flowstations need to be protected by squads and sections of troops as well. How many troops are we looking at ideally to effectively man that area where bunkering, piracy, insurgency and kidnapping are not going to quieten down before 2015 at the earliest?

    What manner of 50,000 troops was OBJ speculating about? Was that a joke? We need to get started with more than twice that number and with a 2,000-man NAF Regiment(plus 15,000 others) and a 3,000-man Naval Infantry Command (plus 15,000 others)

    They should forget the glib talk about ‘compact and professional.’ This is not Israel. our land area is 45 times larger. China have not been in any war since 1978-79 against Vietnam. Their land is ten times larger, their population is eight times bigger but their military is more than twenty times larger. Does anyone know why, if not for the correlation between population size, land area and the need for MANNING?


  27. beegeagle says:

    Oga AOk, I personally see nothing wrong in engaging with the Indians and Pakistan simultaneously. It has been that way since 1960. That is why General Obasanjo trained in Pakistan while IBB trained in India. More recently, I have met SF officers some of whom underwent SEAL courses in Pakistan and underwater warfare courses in India. Indians, led by Brigadier Varma, helped to set up the NDA. All of that has been in the open and both India and Pakistan know it.

    So if we have to train, train and train on Sukhoi operations and maintenance with the Indians, I am all for it. That is what we have done with Pakistani F7 crews and will certainly do more of that when the JF17 gets inducted into the NAF inventory.

    Let us get on with it already.

  28. jimmy says:

    No permanent friends no permanent enemies. I just want them to sincerely buy A dual Fighter/ Bomber plane that will be responsible for covering the length and breadth of Nigeria….. and beyond.
    It should not be a stretch to say the plane could depart from SOKOTO and reach Mali without refueling. Like wise lift off from Warri and reach the Gulf of Guinea without refueling.
    This too me would represent long term STRATEGIC PLANNING anything else then the airforce is being myopic ……. and I sincerely hope that this is not the case.

  29. Bharat says:

    The buy back price of 18 Ex. Indian Su-30 K/MK were $300 million USD in 2007.
    Among them 8 were Su-30 MK and 10 were Su-30 K.
    Both of them didn’t have Canards and TVC Nozzles.

    M stands for Modernized and K stands for export model. Needles to say Su-30 MK or MK1 were advanced than Su-30K. They were never intended to be inducted in IAF. The Su-30 MK1 were first delivered to IAF and were numbered SB001 to SB008. The next tranche was to further modernized be Su-30 MK-2 and progressively to MK-iv where it would have got the designation MKI. A total of 40 aircraft. ( form Mk1 to MK4)

    But, Indian share of work was getting delayed. That led led to delay in induction of airframes and thus India and Russia negotiated for 10 Su 30 K (SB 009 to sb018) so that pilots continue training.

    These 18 airframes were sold/ brought back in 2007 and replaced with MKI version. Those airframes were extensively flogged for pilot training.

    Talk was that they will be modernized to Su 30 KN standard. But, KN standard was a old upgrade proposed back in 2001 so, I don’t thing it’s correct.

    Unless, you are restricting to 6 airframe ( 12 being brought by another country), for considerable future, my advice will be basic to medium modernization which excludes Canards and TVC ( only for cost reason for retrofitting) and use these airframes for pilot training.

    Su 27/30 has a steep learning curve and both Chinese and Indians will attest. Once your pilots are ready go for new airframes.

    Though if you are going for a mix of Su 27 ( Ex. Belarus) and Su 30 then deep modernization is required ( then also no canards for uniformity).

    My 2 cents.

  30. beegeagle says:

    Thanks for that, Bharat.

    When those Su-30K jets first came up for mention here in 2011, the quoted sale price of a Su-30K was US$10 million while the cost of upgradation per unit was put at US$5 million. In effect, US$15 million apiece to get them to contemporary standards. That, in my books, is a steal considering that the unit cost of each of the incomparable F-7 AirGuard jets was also US$15 million.

    • asorockweb says:

      Bharat said “Those airframes were extensively flogged for pilot training.”

      Also that “Su 27/30 has a steep learning curve and both Chinese and Indians will attest.”

      That would mean that even if we buy/bought the Su-30K jets in question, we would use them primarily for pilot training as we try to climb the “steep learning curve” that comes with the Su-30 jets.

      • AOk says:


        Am I reading your comments to mean that these might be tired & battered 11 year old airframes that NAF pilots will struggle to fly?

  31. beegeagle says:

    HERE is the very aircraft seen in Oga XNur44’s avatar window. A Sukhoi Su-30 for sure. Is he telling us something?

    “502” for sure…the inimitable Su-30.

  32. Bharat says:

    Here are two links,
    “The Su-30K have exhausted their pre-overhaul flight limit of 1,500 hours and will be bought back by Russia at a price of $12 million an aircraft for possible resale to some African or Asian nations.”
    “…………… inducted with this new and advanced operational capability within a period of 6 years from “go”.

    The six year time mentioned is both mastering the platform and conversion from Su-30 K/MK to MKI.
    The first Su-30 MK was delivered in 1997 but was not used in 1999 Kargil war, the reason is obvious. Among others, we were not confident of the platform and all tactics had not being developed.

    Fighter jet engines have 1000-1500 hours between overhaul and total life of 2000-3000 hours. But a air frame might have life of 6000 to 8000 hours ( MLU at 3000 to 4000)
    * The data is in generalist sense.
    So, a airframe might get 3 engines in it’s lifetime. And here we are talking about the first engine. So no need to worry.

    @AOk, hope that satisfies you.

    Russian fighters are cleared for about 150 hrs of use usage in a year ( training and peace time) and Nato standard is 225 hours. So, 1500 hrs in 8 to 10 years is in line (though now we use >200 hrs on MKI)

    Steep learning curve is associated with the fact that whether the said air force has experience of that kind of platform. And it has nothing to do with being Indian or Nigerian or Chinese.

    If in our MMRCA we had chosen Mig-35 the learning curve would have been minimum as we have Mig 29 in our inventory, Rafale also will be gentle learning curve as we have Mirage -2000H. But still both platforms are considerably different.

    As NAF doesn’t have any system that is equivalent to a Su-30, a heavy fighter, you have to learn and develop tactics. ( Flight crew, ground crew and maintenance crew), which will take time.

    The news link I posted here mentions India sold those 18 airframes at 12 million $ each.
    The prices of war machines are always motivated.
    F-7 BG, the F-7 for Bangladesh ( not to be confused with BVR capable BGI variant purchased later) was bought at 5/7 million $ a piece.

    Also, $ 5million for upgrade ( as mentioned in your post) will be a basic upgrade package.
    For comparison our Mig 29 upgrade is $15 million a piece and Mirage upgrade is at $40+ million.( For IAF)

    Also at $ 15 million, these appears to be a steal, when 30 year old Kfir jets have a price tag of about $20 million.

    But, that leads to a question why no country has bought it? It lying in Belarus for more than 5 years?

    Answer probably is life cycle cost. While some estimate say it takes $ 5/7 million a year to keep a MiG 29 operational a Mirage needs only $ 1.6 million. Then there are other cost.

    The per/hr operation cost and life cycle cost of all jets can be obtained from open source. How many country do you think can spend $ 150 million per yr to keep those 18 airframe operational? Not many.

    Also, one may wonder why those airframe are sitting in Belarus and not taken back to Russia ( Irkut Corp.) the surprising answer is to avoid VAT and Import duty. Russia didn’t want to pay that for a airframe that it intends to sell off. That’s why it didn’t enter Russian territory.

    I think I am digressing from topic. So, concluding, It’s not a bad idea at all. Once a airframe has been used for 1500 hrs clearly at least there are no ghosts in them. Although they have been sitting inactive for years. Your NAF experts will inspect those airframes, they are professionals and they know what to check.

    Also, I regret it my previous post seemed scaremongering to anyone, but sincerely, I was trying to be honest.

    • Bharat says:

      Su-30 MKI aerobatics including the tail slide.

      The video quality isn’t very good but commentary makes up for it.

    • jimmy says:

      Thank you for your clarification.The point I was stressing about the steep learning curve is this:anytime a new aircraft is 17 thunder that curve is very steep regardless sometimes even to the point of fatalities. Nigerian pilots since the boko haram insurgency have logging a lot more hours in the air than your typical airforce pilot hence they have become very experienced depending on what aircraft they are flying. Flying is essentially like anything else despite the aircraft the more you fly the better you get at.It is expected that whatever aircraft Nigeria purchases they wil be used extensively as a result they wil be required to be almost brand new with upgrades. T-Mobile. America’s First Nationwide 4G Network

  33. jimmy says:

    It is a plane.Learning curve or not.NAF pilots in light of the Boko haram and N’delta Insurgency have extensive man hours underneath their belt and tend to be amongst the most experienced pilots in Africa. Give them the appropriate training they will Master it, be it the SU27, SU30 K .

    • Are James says:

      Learning curve is only steep when you target a short time period to acquire the entire range of competencies with a multi role fighter. We should break our requirements into chunks and divide the competency requirements into stages. I don’t know anything about combat pilot training but for already experienced fighter pilots, I imagine the following kind of rolling training plan. The lifecycle of the jets are 15 to 20 years, What is required now is ground attack so we get training on that first;
      1. General, Avionics board systems & aircraft handling Easy 3 Months
      2. Stand off Ground Attack with missiles, rockets Easy 3 Months
      3. Ground Attack with dumb bombs and smart glide bombs Medium 3 Months
      4. Basic air defence with aircraft type Easy 3 Months
      5 Advanced air defence with aircraft type (dogfight) Hard 6 Months
      6.ECM/EW/data stuff with aircraft type Hard 3 Months

  34. Bharat says:

    @AOk, Gentleman, These jets were used for 10 years in India and still a lot of life will be left in them. But will need modernization. So, we should not consider them battered and tired.

    Also, NAF pilots will face the same level of difficulty, that any other air force will face when inducting a new aircraft.

    As, my detailed post in response to you is still awaiting moderation, I replied in short.

  35. ifiok umoeka says:

    Oga xnur44, a very big congratulations to you and ur family, may God increase ur strength and wisdom as a husband and a father! Welcome little angel, the lines are fallen to u in pleasant places!

  36. ifiok umoeka says:

    For the gun trucks, may I ask, what is our play? Are we replacing the IFV with it? Is it for offense or defense? Is it base protection or ambush protection? How long do we us it for?

    In my opinion, I would rather double our hold of cobras or something in it class albeit with thicker armor, sturdier suspension, up-rated engine and RWS 30mm/ATGM capable and some IVIS analogue to enhance info sharing and situational awareness.

  37. ifiok umoeka says:

    For the MRCA, we must insist on a couple of things;
    -the planes are fit for purpose
    -we can maintain and operate them
    -we develop proper tactics
    -we induct them in good no.

    For the 1st, we must be sure the airframes are up to the task! Perhaps if the Ks are inducted, they will be used in the same role as the Indians (which I support)! Thus, agreeing with Bharat, we get @ least 24 new Su30/35 with or without a significant Israeli sensory input! Bottom line, what we get must be fit for purpose and not just because it is a flanker or it has XYZ range!

  38. ifiok umoeka says:

    2ndly, we must pay attention to logistics and training! The flanker and our F7s couldn’t be more different! The different is like 504 and 508! The learning curve is indeed high, especially if it comes with TVC and Canards! By the way, the Su 35BM doesn’t have canards as it has a lighter radar set! It TVC is enough for super-maneuverebility while canard-less, it RCS is reduce by over 75% (combined with it RAM coating) on the frontal aspect! Remember, the Indians we flying Mig 21Bis b4 converting and they were experienced! A pilot needs about maintain a 200hr/year flight time just to stay average. If the airframe is rated eg 4000hrs , that will mean it will last 20yrs! But in combat, u get called into the air @ least 2X more! Also, to be and maintain cutting edge, u need to be in the air more! The $15mn question now is, without the Kfir-like deep overhaul, how much life is remaining on the ex Indian K/KNs? Will we invest in the capacity to handle maintenance/maintainability in country? Are we committed to co train with other flanker users especially India? Do we have the assets that will enable long range deployment for those exercises? Would we pre-order parts to make sure we are immune from sanctions? We should get @ least one flanker simulator and 2 squadrons of trainers, pre-flanker prep.

  39. ifiok umoeka says:

    3rdly,how do we intend to use it? Will it be replacing the Jags, the Migs or both? Will it be use for maritime strike, ground attack or interception? When we know what role it will fill, we can then dev tactics for them! We must however not give the flanker too much to do so as not to fatigue it and crew! We need dedicated tankers, AEW/ISR, close support etc assets! In other words, we must have a team with proper balance. Everyone can’t be a Musa, the Enyeamas, Mikel, Ambrose, Odemwingie etc, good substitutes and technical crew!
    Finally, we must maintain a good no. With 24 flankers, 36 thunders (I would prefer J10s if we get flankers for commonality and super fulcrums if we do J17), 24 L15/Yak 130, 36 tucanos while we retire all our other aircraft from 1st line (tankers, AEW etc are not included).
    As a side note, the Kfir block 60 in my opinion will best the ex Indian MKs as it is. However, I keep wondering if the J10 variant of the AL31 could be strapped to a Kfir! If it could, even without after burner it would out class the Kfir is flight xteristics as it is from instantaneous and sustained turns to climb rate, range and payload. However, it variable ramp will need adjustment, Ie Ceteris paribus! The fly by wire, I can live without!

  40. ifiok umoeka says:

    As for the troop no. if the increase in troop nos thus hasn’t improved the military, what makes us think that hundred % increase will make it better? In my opinion, our troop level is OK! All we need do is perhaps increase our SF to a brigade, ramp up training across board, equip and properly lead/motivate them and we have mean machine! Also important is the need to withdraw the army from police duty while the MPF is trained,equipped and properly led/motivated to carry out their duties!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s