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Encyclopedia > Iran Air Flight 655
Iran Air Flight 655

CG Render of Iran Air Flight 655 about to be hit by a missile from USS Vincennes Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 517 pixelsFull resolution (1402 × 906 pixels, file size: 755 KB, MIME type: image/png) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... The Standard Missile is a type of surface-to-air missile (SAM) originally developed for the United States Navy. ... The fourth USS Vincennes (CG-49) is a U.S. Navy Ticonderoga class AEGIS guided missile cruiser. ...

Summary
Date  July 3, 1988
Cause  Civilian airliner shoot-down
Site  Persian Gulf
Origin  Mehrabad International Airport
Last stopover  Bandar Abbas International Airport
Destination  Dubai International Airport
Passengers  275
Crew  15
Fatalities  290
Survivors  0
Aircraft
 Aircraft type  Airbus A300B2-203
Operator  Iran Air
Tail number  EP-IBU

Iran Air Flight 655 (IR655) was a commercial flight operated by Iran Air that flew from Bandar Abbas, Iran to Dubai, UAE. On Sunday July 3, 1988, towards the end of the Iran Iraq War, the aircraft flying IR655 was shot down by the U.S. Navy guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes between Bandar Abbas and Dubai, killing all 290 passengers and crew aboard, including 38 non-Iranians and 66 children. The Vincennes was inside Iranian territorial waters at the time. is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... , Mehrabad International Airport (Persian: ) (IATA: THR, ICAO: OIII) is an airport that serves Tehran, Iran. ... Bandar Abbas International Airport is an airport in Bandar Abbas, Iran (IATA: BND, ICAO: OIKB). ... Dubai International Airport (IATA: DXB, ICAO: OMDB) (Arabic: مطار دبي الدولي) is the international airport serving Dubai, the largest city of the United Arab Emirates. ... The Airbus A300 is a short to medium range widebody aircraft. ... Iran Air is the flag carrier airline of Iran, based in Tehran. ... Iran Air is the flag carrier airline of Iran, based in Tehran. ... Categories: Iran geography stubs | Cities in Iran | Coastal cities ... Coordinates: , Emirate Government  - Emir Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Area [1]  - Metro 4,114 km² (1,588. ... UAE redirects here; for other uses of that term, see UAE (disambiguation) The United Arab Emirates is an oil-rich country situated in the south-east of the Arabian Peninsula in Southwest Asia, comprising seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm al-Quwain. ... is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... Combatants Iran Iraq Commanders Strength Casualties Est. ... The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... The fourth USS Vincennes (CG-49) is a U.S. Navy Ticonderoga class AEGIS guided missile cruiser. ...


According to the US government, the Iranian airbus was mistakenly identified as an attacking F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft. According to the Iranian government, the Vincennes knowingly shot down a civilian aircraft. The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is a supersonic, twin-engine, two-seat, variable geometry wing aircraft. ... An A-10 Thunderbolt II, F-86 Sabre, P-38 Lightning and P-51 Mustang fly in formation during an air show at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. ...


The flight number IR655 is still used by Iran Air on the Tehran-Bandar Abbas-Dubai route.[1] For other uses, see Tehran (disambiguation). ... Categories: Iran geography stubs | Cities in Iran | Coastal cities ... Coordinates: , Emirate Government  - Emir Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Area [1]  - Metro 4,114 km² (1,588. ...

Contents

Background

The US Navy was operating under what Admiral Crowe called "the air of terrorism and peril that pervaded the Gulf at that time." [2]


Shootdown

The plane, an Airbus A300B2, registered as EP-IBU and flown by Mohsen Rezaian, a veteran captain with 7,000 hours of flight time, left Bandar Abbas at 10:17 am Iran time (UTC+0330), 27 minutes after its scheduled departure time. It should have been a 28-minute flight. After takeoff, it was directed by the Bandar Abbas tower to turn on its transponder and proceed over the Persian Gulf. The flight was assigned routinely to commercial air corridor Amber 59, a twenty-mile-wide lane on a direct line to Dubai airport. The short distance made for a simple flight pattern: climb to 14,000 feet (about 4,300 m), cruise for a short time, and descend into Dubai. This article is about the airliner manufacturer. ... The Airbus A300 is a short to medium range widebody aircraft. ... ... An Ontario Highway 407 toll transponder In telecommunication, the term transponder (short-for Transmitter-responder and sometimes abbreviated to XPDR, XPNDR or TPDR) has the following meanings: An automatic device that receives, amplifies, and retransmits a signal on a different frequency (see also broadcast translator). ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... Air Corridor is an airline based in Nampula, Mozambique. ...


At that same time, the Vincennes, under the command of Captain William C. Rogers III and fitted with the then-new AEGIS combat system, was nearby in the Strait of Hormuz. Captain William C. Rogers III of the United States Navy, a native of San Diego County, California, was the captain of USS Vincennes, a guided missile cruiser with the Aegis Combat System. ... USS Lake Champlain, a Ticonderoga-class Aegis guided missile cruiser, launched in 1987 The Aegis combat system is an integrated missile guidance system used by the United States Navy. ... Historical map of the area (1892) Map Of Strait of Hormuz Satellite image The Strait of Hormuz (Arabic: ‎, Persian: ‎) is a narrow, strategically important stretch of ocean between the Gulf of Oman in the southeast and the Persian Gulf in the southwest. ...

Aegis screen displays on Ticonderoga class cruiser USS Vincennes
Aegis screen displays on Ticonderoga class cruiser USS Vincennes

The Ticonderoga class cruiser Vincennes had been rushed to the area after the April 14 mining of the USS Samuel B. Roberts by Iranian forces. Iran had purchased Silkworm missiles from China, and an AEGIS cruiser was the only type of vessel that could counter the threat. The Roberts had been operating in the Persian Gulf as part of Operation Earnest Will, the effort to protect Kuwaiti oil tankers during the Iran-Iraq War. Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 741 × 600 pixels Full resolution (2254 × 1825 pixel, file size: 1. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Size of this preview: 741 × 600 pixels Full resolution (2254 × 1825 pixel, file size: 1. ... Ticonderoga class cruiser is a class of warships in the US Navy, first ordered and authorized in FY 1978. ... The fourth USS Vincennes (CG-49) is a U.S. Navy Ticonderoga class AEGIS guided missile cruiser. ... This could mean: Ticonderoga class cruiser or Ticonderoga class aircraft carrier This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... April 14 is the 104th day of the year (105th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar, with 261 days remaining. ... Polish wz. ... USS (FFG-58) is one of the final ships in the United States Navys Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided missile frigates. ... Silkworm missile stored at Umm Qasr in Iraq. ... Combatants United States Navy Iranian Navy Strength 1 aircraft carrier, 1 amphibious transport dock 4 destroyers 1 guided missile cruiser 3 frigates 4 frigates 4 Corvettes Several Mine Layers Several Missile Craft Operation Earnest Will (24 July 1987 - 26 September 1988) was the U.S. military protection of Kuwaiti oil... The Oil Tankers are tankers featured in the Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends TV Series. ... Combatants  Iran Kurdish Peshmerga Iraq Peoples Mujahedin of Iran Commanders Ruhollah Khomeini Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani Ali Shamkhani Mostafa Chamran â€  Saddam Hussein Ali Hassan al-Majid Strength 305,000 soldiers 500,000 Pasdaran and Basij militia 900 tanks 1,000 armored vehicles 3,000 artillery pieces 470 aircraft 750 helicopters...


On the morning of July 3, the Vincennes crossed into Iranian territorial waters during clashes with Iranian gunboats. Earlier in the day, the Vincennes — along with Iranian gunboats — had similarly violated Omani waters until challenged by an Omani warship. The USS Sides (FFG-14) and USS Elmer Montgomery (FF-1082) were nearby. is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A gunboat is literally a boat carrying one or more guns. ... USS Sides (FFG-14), eighth ship of the Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided-missile frigates, was named for Admiral John H. Sides (died 1978). ... Five ships of the United States Navy have been named USS Montgomery, the first four after the Revolutionary War general Richard Montgomery, and the fifth after Admiral John B. Montgomery (though sometimes said to be after Richard Montgomery also). ...


The event triggered an intense controversy, with Iran condemning the shootdown as a "barbaric act." On the other hand, George H.W. Bush, at the time Vice President of the United States in the Reagan Administration, defended his country at the United Nations by declaring that the shootdown had been a wartime incident and that the crew of the Vincennes had acted appropriately to the situation at the time. At a news conference on 2 August 1988 he said "I will never apologize for the United States of America—I don’t care what the facts are" in reference to the incident.[3] Order: 41st President Vice President: Dan Quayle Term of office: January 20, 1989 – January 20, 1993 Preceded by: Ronald Reagan Succeeded by: Bill Clinton Date of birth: June 12, 1924 Place of birth: Milton, Massachusetts First Lady: Barbara Pierce Bush Political party: Republican George Herbert Walker Bush, KBE (born... The Vice President of the United States (sometimes referred to as VPOTUS[1] or Veep) is the first in the presidential line of succession, becoming the new President of the United States upon the death, resignation, or removal of the president. ... President Reagan, with his Cabinet and staff, in the Oval Office (February 4, 1981) Headed by U.S. President Ronald Reagan from 1981 to 1989, the Reagan Administration was conservative, steadfastly anti-Communist and in favor of tax cuts and smaller government. ... is the 214th day of the year (215th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ...


US government accounts

According to the US government, the Vincennes mistakenly identified the Iranian airliner as an attacking military fighter. The officers identified the flight profile being flown by the Airbus A300B2 as being similar to that of an F-14A Tomcat during an attack run;[4] the commercial flight had originated at Bandar Abbas, which served dual roles as a base for Iranian F-14 operations and as a hub for commercial, civilian flights.[5] According to the same reports, the Vincennes tried more than once to contact Flight 655, but there was no acknowledgement. The Airbus A300 is a short to medium range, wide-body family of aircraft manufactured by Airbus Industries between 1972 and the present. ... The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is a supersonic, twin-engine, two-seat, variable geometry wing aircraft. ...


At 10:24 am, with the civilian jet 11 nautical miles away, the Vincennes fired two SM-2MR Surface-to-air missiles. The first missile broke the aircraft in two and damaged the tailplane and right wing. After the engagement, the Vincennes’ crew realized that the plane had been a civilian airliner. A nautical mile or sea mile is a unit of length. ... The Standard Missile is a type of surface-to-air missile (SAM) originally developed for the United States Navy. ...


This version was finalized in a report by Admiral William Fogarty, entitled Formal Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding the Downing of Iran Air Flight 655 on 3 July 1988.[6] Only parts of this report have been released (part I in 1988 and part II in 1993), which has drawn criticism from many observers. For other uses, see Admiral (disambiguation). ...


The unclassified version of a Congressional report of a U.S. Navy investigation headed by Admiral William Fogarty reports that the USS Vincennes was in international waters, contrary to the claims of the Iranian government.[citation needed] The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ...


When questioned by BBC journalists in a 2002 documentary, the US government stated in a written answer that they believed the incident may have been caused by a simultaneous psychological condition amongst the 18 bridge crew of the Vincennes called 'scenario fulfilment’, which is said to occur when persons are under pressure. In such a situation, the men will carry out a training scenario, believing it to be reality while ignoring sensory information that contradicts the scenario. In the case of this incident, the scenario was an attack by a lone military aircraft. This hypothesis, if true, could explain why the records of the Vincennes’ instruments never indicated a craft resembling an F-14 being detected, while a civilian IFF signal was detected.[citation needed]


The U.S. government issued notes of regret for the loss of human life but never admitted wrongdoing, accepted responsibility, nor apologised for the incident. Officially, it continues to blame Iranian hostile actions for the incident. This policy was coined by US Vice-President George H. W. Bush speaking to Republican ethnic leaders in 2 August 1988 mentioning that "I will never apologise for the United States of America, ever. I don't care what it has done. I don't care what the facts are.".[7] The Vice President of the United States[1] (sometimes referred to as VPOTUS[2] or Veep) is the first in the presidential line of succession, becoming the new President of the United States upon the death, resignation, or removal of the president. ... George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) was the 41st President of the United States, serving from 1989 to 1993. ...


Iranian government account

A block of 45 rials postage stamps released by Iran on 11 August 1988, in commemoration of the downing of Iran Air Flight 655 by the USS Vincennes.

According to the Iranian government, the shooting down of IR 655 by the Vincennes was an intentionally performed and unlawful act. Even if there was a mistaken identification, which Iran has not accepted, it argues that this constituted gross negligence and recklessness amounting to an international crime, not an accident.[8] Image File history File links Size of this preview: 441 × 599 pixels Full resolution (690 × 937 pixel, file size: 287 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Iranian postage stamp, Scott #2335 - Destruction of Iranian Airliner A block of 45 rials postage stamps released by Iran on 11 August 1988, in commemoration... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 441 × 599 pixels Full resolution (690 × 937 pixel, file size: 287 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Iranian postage stamp, Scott #2335 - Destruction of Iranian Airliner A block of 45 rials postage stamps released by Iran on 11 August 1988, in commemoration...


In April 1988, the US Navy carried out Operation Praying Mantis against Iran and directly attacked Iranian Naval vessels and installations and Iranian off-shore oil facilities. The battle was launched in retaliation for the 14 April mining of the USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG-58). U.S. forces sank two Iranian warships and three armed speedboats in the engagement. Iranian frigate IS Sahand (74) attacked by aircraft of U.S. Navy Carrier Air Wing 11 in retaliation for the mining of the guided missile frigate USS . ... USS (FFG-58) is one of the final ships in the United States Navys Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided missile frigates. ...


Independent sources

John Barry and Roger Charles of Newsweek wrote that Rogers acted recklessly and without due care in their July 13, 1992 article. [9] They also accused the U.S. government of a cover-up which Admiral Crowe refuted. [10] An analysis of the events by the International Strategic Studies Association described the deployment of an Aegis cruiser in the zone as irresponsible and felt that the expense of the ship had played a major part in the setting of a low threshold for opening fire.[11] The Vincennes had been nicknamed 'Robocruiser' by crew members and other US Navy ships, both in reference to its AEGIS system, and to the supposed aggressive tendencies of its captain.[1] The US fighter base in Bahrain had refused to provide supporting aircraft to cover the Vincennes — the commander of the base stated that his decision was based on a fear that the Vincennes would accidentally shoot down one of his aircraft.[citation needed] The Newsweek logo Newsweek is a weekly news magazine published in New York City and distributed throughout the United States and internationally. ... The International Strategic Studies Association (ISSA) is a Washington DC based non-governmental organization (NGO) with a world-wide membership of professionals involved in national management, particularly in national and international security and strategic policy. ...


On November 6, 2003 the International Court of Justice ruled that "the actions of the United States of America against Iranian oil platforms on 19 October 1987 and 18 April 1988 cannot be justified as measures necessary to protect the essential security interests of the United States of America."[12] However, the case relating to the Airbus downing, "the Aerial Incident of 3 July 1988, (Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America)", was dropped 22 February 1996 following settlement and reparations by the United States.[13] is the 310th day of the year (311th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... is the 292nd day of the year (293rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays 1987 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 108th day of the year (109th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 53rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display full 1996 Gregorian calendar). ...


Three years after the incident, Admiral William J. Crowe admitted on American television show Nightline that the Vincennes was inside Iranian territorial waters when it launched the missiles.[14] This contradicted earlier Navy statements. William J. Crowe (January 2, 1925–) was a Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush, and served as the Ambassador to the United Kingdom under President Bill Clinton. ... Nightline is a late-night hard and soft news program broadcast by ABC in the United States, and has a franchised formula to other networks and stations elsewhere in the world. ...


Captain David Carlson, commander of the USS Sides, the warship stationed near to the Vincennes at the time of the incident, is reported (Fisk, 2005) to have said that the destruction of the aircraft "marked the horrifying climax to Captain Rogers’ aggressiveness, first seen four weeks ago." His comment referred to incidents on June 2, when Rogers had sailed the Vincennes too close to an Iranian frigate undertaking a lawful search of a bulk carrier, launched a helicopter within 2-3 miles (3.2-4.8 km) of an Iranian small craft despite rules of engagement requiring a four-mile (6.4 km) separation, and opened fire on a number of small Iranian military boats. Of those incidents, Carlson commented, "Why do you want an Aegis cruiser out there shooting up boats? It wasn’t a smart thing to do." At the time of Rogers’ announcement to higher command that he was going to shoot down the plane, Carlson is reported (Fisk, 2005) to have been thunderstruck: "I said to folks around me, 'Why, what the hell is he doing?' I went through the drill again. F-14. He’s climbing. By now this damn thing is at 7,000 feet." However, Carlson thought the Vincennes might have more information, and was unaware that Rogers had been wrongly informed that the plane was diving. USS Sides (FFG-14), eighth ship of the Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided-missile frigates, was named for Admiral John H. Sides (died 1978). ... is the 153rd day of the year (154th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article describes the military term of the rules of engagement. ... Sailors prepare an F-14 Tomcat for flight on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003). ...


According to the BBC documentary of 2002, Carlson identified IR655 as a civilian craft based on its radar signature, its 'squawk' (IFF) code, and the fact that it was ascending at low speed — an attacking military aircraft would be descending towards the Vincennes at high speed. At first Carlson thought that the 'Iranian Tomcat' identified by the Vincennes must be some another aircraft, as it was difficult for him to believe that the Vincennes crew could mistake a civilian airliner for a Tomcat. The Vincennes’ warnings were on a military radio channel, addressed to 'Iranian Tomcat'. When Carlson concluded that the Vincennes was referring to IR655 in its warning to turn away or receive fire, he urgently warned IR655 on a civilian radio frequency that it was in danger, having been mistaken for a military aircraft, and should turn away. IR655 immediately complied and changed course onto a trajectory away from the Vincennes. The Vincennes fired regardless. Carlson expressed the view that the incident was a mistake brought about by an overly-aggressive approach by the captain of the Vincennes. In telecommunications, identification, friend or foe (IFF) is a crypto identification system designed for command and control. ...


Craig, Morales & Oliver, in a slide presentation published in M.I.T.'s Spring 2004 Aeronautics & Astronautics, as the "USS Vincennes Incident," commented that Captain Rogers had "an undeniable and unequivocal tendency towards what I call 'picking a fight.'" On his own initiative, Rogers moved the Vincennes 50 miles northeast to join the USS Montgomery. An angry Captain McKenna ordered Rogers back to Abu Musa, but the Vincennes helicopter pilot, Lt Mark Collier, followed the Iranian speedboats as they retreated north, eventually taking some fire:

"…the Vincennes jumps back into the fray. Heading towards the majority of the speedboats, he is unable to get a clear target. Also, the speedboats are now just slowly milling about in their own territorial waters. Despite clear information to the contrary, Rogers informs command that the gunboats are gathering speed and showing hostile intent and gains approval to fire upon them at 0939. Finally, in another fateful decision, he crosses the 12-mile limit off the coast and enters illegally into Iranian waters."[15]

The Fogarty report concluded, "The data from USS Vincennes tapes, information from USS Sides and reliable intelligence information, corroborate the fact that [Iran Air Flight 655] was on a normal commercial air flight plan profile, in the assigned airway, squawking Mode III 6760, on a continuous ascent in altitude from takeoff at Bandar Abbas to shoot-down." The fault in the USS Vincennes lying directly in the airplane’s pathway is Captain Rogers’.


Radio communication

Throughout its final flight IR655 was in radio contact with various air traffic control services using standard civil aviation frequencies, and had spoken in English to Bandar Abbas Approach Control seconds before the Vincennes launched its missiles. According to the U.S. Navy investigation the Vincennes at that time had no equipment suitable for monitoring civil aviation frequencies, other than the International Air Distress frequency, while being a sophisticated anti-aircraft warship operating two helicopters. Subsequently U.S. Navy warships in the area were equipped with dialable VHF radios, and access to flight plan information was sought, to better track commercial airliners. For the Canadian musical group, see Air Traffic Control (band). ... The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... 121. ... The United States Navy (USN) is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for naval operations. ... Very high frequency (VHF) is the radio frequency range from 30 MHz to 300 MHz. ...


The official ICAO report stated that 10 attempts were made to contact Iran Air flight 655: seven on military frequencies and three on commercial frequencies, addressed to the supposed "unidentified Iranian aircraft" and giving its speed as 350 knots. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), an agency of the United Nations, codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth. ...


However IR655 was arguably not "unidentified" as its commercial Mode III Transponder was active and squawking its assigned 6760 identifier code. It was traveling at an airspeed of 300 knots. The reference to "350 knots" was its speed over ground, as observed by radar.


International investigations concluded that the crew of IR655 assumed that the three calls that they received before the missiles struck must have been directed at an Iranian P3 (see below).

Potential factors

  • The ship’s crew did not efficiently consult commercial airliner schedules, due to confusion over which time zone the schedules referred to. The airliner’s departure was 27 minutes later than scheduled. "The CIC was also very dark, and the few lights that it did have flickered every time the Vincennes fired at the speedboats. This was of special concern to Petty Officer Andrew Anderson, who first picked up Flight 655 on radar and thought that it might be a commercial aircraft. As he was searching in the Navy’s listing of commercial flights, he apparently missed Flight 655 because it was so dark."[15]
  • An Iranian P-3 was in the area some time before the attack, providing a potential (albeit unlikely) explanation for the lack of target acquisition radar interrogation[16]
  • It was first claimed that Flight 655 deviated from the centre of its air corridor — an unusual occurrence with commercial flights — namely that it was 3.35 NM off the 20 NM-wide corridor at the time of being shot down. It is further claimed that this deviation had it bearing straight at the Vincennes. It is unclear how much of this deviation was true, and how much was claimed to obscure the Vincennes’ position within Iranian territorial waters.
  • It is claimed that a Mode II IFF signal of 21100 was attributed to the Airbus track, identifying it as an Iranian military aircraft (commercial aircraft respond with Mode III signals). According to the official military report, the flight was in fact using the correct 'squawk' mode. The Vincennes either heard it incorrectly or believed it to be a military aircraft using Mode III 36760 to deceive them. It has since been assumed that the tracking device used to identify IFF squawks was left in the original position of Flight 655 when first sighted (at take-off), confusing the Flight 655 squawk with that of an Iranian F-14 fighter within the area. The Bandar Abbas airport was shared between commercial and military aircraft at that time.
  • The crew of the VincennesCombat Information Center (CIC) confusingly reported the plane as ascending and descending at the same time (there were two "camps"). This seems to have happened because the Airbus’ original CIC track, number 4474, had been replaced by the Sides’ track, number 4131, when the computer recognised them as one and the same. Shortly thereafter, track 4474 was re-assigned by the system to an American A-6, several hundred miles away, which was following a descending course at the time. Apparently not all the crew in the CIC realized the track number had been switched on them.
  • This incident took place just over a year after the USS Stark was attacked in the Persian Gulf by an Iraqi Mirage F-1, killing 37.
  • The psychology and mindset after engaging in a battle with Iranian gunboats. There are claims that Vincennes was engaged in an operation using a decoy cargo ship to lure Iranian gunboats to a fight. However, those claims are denied by Fogary in "Hearing Before The Investigation Subcommittee and The Defense Policy Panel of The Committee on Armed Services, House of Representatives, One Hundred Second Congress, Second Session, July 21, 1992". Also, the initial claims of Vincennes being called for help by a cargo ship attacked by Iranian gunboats have been ruled out. That leads to claims that the Iranian gunboats were provoked by helicopters inside Iranian waters and not the other way around.[17] This might have contributed to the mistakes made. The actual reasons for the Vincennes’ engagement with gunboats is not so clear to this date.
  • Software development expert Steve McConnell claimed:
Iran Air Flight 655 was shot down by the USS Vincennes’ Aegis system in 1988, killing 290 people. The error was initially attributed to operator error, but later some experts attributed the incident to the poor design of the Aegis user interface.[18]
  • A lack of training contributed to the disaster.
It was, however, a known fact that many of the senior officers on board the Vincennes knew very little about computerized warfare. The tactical officer for surface warfare, Lt Cmdr Guillory, knew so little that he routinely used his computer screens as a surface for sticky notes instead. Petty Officer Anderson, who missed Flight 655 on the schedule because it was so dark, also later claimed that he was confused by the gulf’s four different time zones, something proper training could have easily helped with. Lt Clay Zocher was the boss of Air Alley, which was responsible for air warfare, but he had only stood watch at that post twice before and had never fully learned and mastered the console routines. In fact, when he was finally given the green light to fire upon the incoming aircraft, he pressed the wrong keys 23 times, until a veteran petty officer leaned over and hit the right ones. Nerves were shattered, and the training seemed nonexistent."[15]

The Lockheed P-3 Orion is a maritime patrol aircraft of numerous militaries around the world, used primarily for maritime patrol, reconnaissance, and anti-submarine warfare. ... In telecommunications, identification, friend or foe (IFF) is a crypto identification system designed for command and control. ... Sailors prepare an F-14 Tomcat for flight on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003). ... Categories: Iran geography stubs | Cities in Iran | Coastal cities ... A Combat Information Center (CIC), or Action Information Center (AIC) is the tactical center of a warship, manned and equipped to collect, present, manage, evaluate and disseminate information for the use of the embarked flag officer, commanding officer, and control agencies. ... This article is about the airliner manufacturer. ... The A-6 Intruder is a twin-engine, mid-wing attack aircraft built by Grumman Aerospace. ... Stark listing following 2 hits by Exocet missiles USS Stark (FFG-31), twenty-third ship of the Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided-missile frigates, was named for Admiral Harold Rainsford Stark (1880–1972). ... Map of the Persian Gulf. ... Steven Steve C. McConnell is a well-known author of many software engineering textbooks including Code Complete, Rapid Development, and Software Estimation. ...

Medals awarded

The men of the Vincennes were all awarded combat-action ribbons. Lustig, the air-warfare co-ordinator, won the navy’s Commendation Medal for "heroic achievement," noting his "ability to maintain his poise and confidence under fire" that enabled him to "quickly and precisely complete the firing procedure"[19] The Legion of Merit was presented to Rogers and Lustig on 3 July 1988, according to a 23 April 1990 article in The Washington Post. The citations did not mention the Iran Air flight. It should be noted that the Legion of Merit is often awarded to high-ranking officers upon successful completion of especially difficult duty assignments and/or last tours of duty before retirement. The Commendation Medal is a mid-level United States military award which is presented for sustained acts of heroism or meritorious service. ... The Legion of Merit is a military decoration of the United States armed forces that is awarded for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements. ... is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 113th day of the year (114th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1990 (MCMXC) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the 1990 Gregorian calendar). ... The Washington Post is the largest newspaper in Washington, D.C.. It is also one of the citys oldest papers, having been founded in 1877. ...


The incident overshadowed U.S.-Iran relations for many years. Following the explosion of Pan Am Flight 103 six months later, the British and American governments initially blamed the PFLP-GC, a Palestinian militant group backed by Syria, with assumptions of assistance from Iran in retaliation for Iran Air Flight 655.[citation needed] The cause of the crash was later determined to be a bomb associated with the Libyan intelligence service. Morgan Shuster and US officials at Atabak Palace, Tehran, 1911. ... PA 103 redirects here. ... The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command is a left-wing Palestinian nationalist organization. ... The term Palestinian has other usages, for which see definitions of Palestinian. ...


The Flight 655 incident has often been compared to the downing of Korean Air Flight 007 by the Soviet Air Force in 1983. Korean Air Lines Flight 007, also known as KAL 007 or KE007, was a Korean Air Lines civilian airliner shot down by Soviet jet interceptors on September 1, 1983 just west of Sakhalin island. ... The Soviet Air Force, also known under the abbreviation VVS, transliterated from Russian: ВВС, Военно-воздушные силы (Voenno-Vozdushnye Sily), formed the official designation of the air force of the Soviet Union. ...


Compensation

Initially the U.S. government issued notes of regret for the loss of human life but never admitted wrongdoing, accepted responsibility, nor apologized for the incident.


On February 22, 1996 the United States agreed to pay Iran US$61.8 million in compensation ($300,000 per wage-earning victim, $150,000 per non-wage-earner) for the 248 Iranians killed in the shootdown, but not for the aircraft, which was estimated to be worth approximately US$30 million. This was an agreed settlement to discontinue a case brought by Iran in 1989 against the U.S. in the International Court of Justice.[20] The payment of compensation was explicitly characterised by the US as being on an ex gratia basis, and the U.S. denied having any responsibility or liability for what happened. Officially, it continues to blame Iranian hostile actions for the incident. is the 53rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display full 1996 Gregorian calendar). ... The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States. ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... Ex gratia (sometimes ex-gratia) is Latin (lit. ...


References

Cited

  1. ^ Iran Air flight timetable http://www.iranair.com/util/img/index.do;jsessionid=a0303461311181370009687?imgPath=%5Cfiles%5CabtIrnAir%5Cdownload%5C520_file_en.pdf
  2. ^ Crowe Refutes ABC/Newsweek Charges on Vincennes
  3. ^ "Perspectives", Newsweek, August 15, 1988, p. 15. 
  4. ^ An Airbus A300B2 is 177 feet long (54.08 m), nearly three times as long as an F-14, which is 61 ft 9 in long (18.6 m). Analysis of the radar return’s strength can tell them apart, but this is not done in a busy environment because of the time that it requires. [citation needed]
  5. ^ Military Blunders, History.com.
  6. ^ Fogarty, William M. (July 28 1988). Formal Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding the Downing of Iran Air Flight 655 on 3 July 1988. Retrieved on 2006-03-31.
  7. ^ "Perspectives", Newsweek, August 15, 1988, p. 15. 
  8. ^ International Court of Justice. Aerial Incident of 3 July 1988 (Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America) — Iranian submission: Part IV B, The shooting down of flight IR 655, para. 4.52-4.54. Accessed 2007-01-20.
  9. ^ "Newsweek", July 13, 1992. 
  10. ^ "... contrary to Koppel's very serious charge of some type of conspiracy, the appropriate committees of Congress were kept informed throughout." Crowe Refutes ABC/Newsweek Charges on Vincennes
  11. ^ A Look at the Naval Lessons Available to the US from the Iraq War (May 5, 2003). Retrieved on 2006-03-31.
  12. ^ International Court of Justice. Oil Platforms (Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America). Accessed December 12, 2006.
  13. ^ International Court of Justice. Aerial Incident of 3 July 1988 (Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America). Accessed December 12, 2006.
  14. ^ The USS Vincennes: Public War, Secret War (July 1, 1992). Retrieved on 2006-03-31.
  15. ^ a b c USS Vincennes Incident, Aeronautics & Astronautics, Spring 2004, MIT, MA, USA.
  16. ^ Klein, Gary (1999). Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions, Chapter 6. The MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-61146-5. 
  17. ^ Iran Air 655, House Armed Services Hearing, July 21, 1992
  18. ^ Professional Software Development, page 166
  19. ^ History.com, Military Blunders Retrieved September 13, 2006
  20. ^ Aerial Incident of 3 July 1988 (Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America). Retrieved on 2006-03-31.

The Newsweek logo Newsweek is a weekly news magazine published in New York City and distributed throughout the United States and internationally. ... is the 227th day of the year (228th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 90th day of the year (91st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Newsweek logo Newsweek is a weekly news magazine published in New York City and distributed throughout the United States and internationally. ... is the 227th day of the year (228th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... January 20 is the 20th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Newsweek logo Newsweek is a weekly news magazine published in New York City and distributed throughout the United States and internationally. ... is the 194th day of the year (195th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 90th day of the year (91st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... is the 346th day of the year (347th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... is the 346th day of the year (347th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 90th day of the year (91st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 202nd day of the year (203rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar). ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 90th day of the year (91st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

Others

  1. Nunn Wants to Reopen Inquiry into Vincennes’ Gulf Location. Washington Times, July 4, 1992. Abstract: Senator Sam Nunn called on the Pentagon to probe allegations that the Navy "deliberately misled Congress" about the location of the USS Vincennes when it shot down an Iranian civilian airliner four years ago.
  2. Fisk, Robert. The Great War for Civilisation — The Conquest of the Middle East. London: Fourth Estate, 2005. 318–328. ISBN 1-84115-007-X
  3. Marian Nash Leich, "Denial of Liability: Ex Gratia Compensation on a Humanitarian Basis" American Journal of International Law Vol. 83 p. 319 (1989)
  4. USS Vincennes Incident; Dan Craig, Dan Morales, Mike Oliver; M.I.T. Aeronautics & Astronautics, Spring 2004

is the 185th day of the year (186th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar). ... For people named Robert Fiske, see Robert Fiske (disambiguation). ...

See also

Iranian frigate IS Sahand (74) attacked by aircraft of U.S. Navy Carrier Air Wing 11 in retaliation for the mining of the guided missile frigate USS . ... Citing the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board, an aviation accident is defined as an occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight and all such persons have disembarked, and in which any person... In the history of commercial aviation, there have been many airliner shootdown incidents which have been caused intentionally or by accident. ... Korean Air Lines Flight 007, also known as KAL 007 or KE007, was a Korean Air Lines civilian airliner shot down by Soviet jet interceptors on September 1, 1983 just west of Sakhalin island. ... The Sukhoi Su-15 (NATO reporting name Flagon) was a twin engined interceptor aircraft developed by the Soviet Union in the 1960s to replace the Sukhoi Su-11. ... is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1983 (MCMLXXXIII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1983 Gregorian calendar). ... Sakhalin (Russian: , IPA: ; Japanese: 樺太 ) or サハリン )); Chinese: 庫頁; also Saghalien, is a large elongated island in the North Pacific, lying between 45°50 and 54°24 N. It is part of Russia and is its largest island, administered as part of Sakhalin Oblast. ... El Al Flight 402, a Lockheed L-049 Constellation turboprop, registered 4X-AKC, was an international passenger flight from Vienna, Austria to Tel Aviv, Israel via Istanbul, Turkey, on July 27, 1955, which strayed into Bulgarian airspace and was shot down by two Bulgarian MiG-15 jet fighters and crashed... The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 (NATO reporting name Fagot) was a jet fighter developed for the USSR. History Design began under the bureau designation I-310, which first flew in 1947. ... is the 208th day of the year (209th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1955 (MCMLV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1955 Gregorian calendar). ... Libyan Arab Airlines Flight 114 was a regularly-scheduled flight from Tripoli to Cairo via Benghazi. ... The Israeli Air Force (IAF; Hebrew: זרוע האויר והחלל, Zroa HaAvir VeHaḤalal, Air and Space Division, commonly known as חיל האוויר Hel HaAvir) is the air force of the Israel Defense Forces. ... The F-4 Phantom II (simply F-4 Phantom after 1990) is a two-place (tandem), supersonic, long-range, all-weather fighter-bomber built by McDonnell Douglas Corporation. ... is the 52nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the song by James Blunt, see 1973 (song). ... Korean Air Lines Flight 902 (KAL902, KE902) was the flight number of a civilian airliner shot down by Soviet fighters on April 20, 1978 near Murmansk, after it violated Soviet airspace and failed to respond to Soviet interceptors. ... The Sukhoi Su-15 (NATO reporting name Flagon) was a twin engined interceptor aircraft developed by the Soviet Union in the 1960s to replace the Sukhoi Su-11. ... is the 110th day of the year (111th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1978 (MCMLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays the 1978 Gregorian calendar). ... Murmansk coin Murmansk (Russian: ; Finnish: (archaic); Northern Sami: ; Skolt Sami: ) is a city in the extreme northwest part of Russia with a seaport on the Kola Bay, 12 km from the Barents Sea on the northern shore of the Kola Peninsula, not far from Russias borders with Norway and...

External links

is the 182nd day of the year (183rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 251st day of the year (252nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ... is the 184th day of the year (185th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1998 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 185th day of the year (186th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 187th day of the year (188th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 192nd day of the year (193rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 194th day of the year (195th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ... is the 195th day of the year (196th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1988 (MCMLXXXVIII) was a leap year starting on Friday (link displays 1988 Gregorian calendar). ...

Further reading

Coordinates: 26°40′06″N, 56°02′41″E Map of Earth showing lines of latitude (horizontally) and longitude (vertically), Eckert VI projection; large version (pdf, 1. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Iran Air Flight 655 - Biocrawler (927 words)
Iran Air Flight 655 "IR655" was a commercial flight operated by Iran Air, that flew on a Tehran-Bandar Abbas-Dubai route.
The officers identified the flight profile being flown by the A300B2 as being similar to that of an Iranian Air Force F-14A Tomcat during an attack run.
The official ICAO report stated that these attempts to contact Iran Air 655 were sent on the wrong frequency and addressed to a non-existent "Iranian F-14".
Reference.com/Encyclopedia/Iran Air Flight 655 (3058 words)
Iran Air Flight 655 (IR655) was a commercial flight operated by Iran Air that flew from Bandar Abbas, Iran to Dubai, UAE.
Iran had purchased Silkworm missiles from China, and an AEGIS cruiser was the only type of vessel that could counter the threat.
The officers identified the flight profile being flown by the Airbus A300B2 as being similar to that of an F-14A Tomcat during an attack run; the commercial flight had originated at Bandar Abbas, which served dual roles as a base for Iranian F-14 operations and as a hub for commercial, civilian flights.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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