Sumter II APA-52 - History

Sumter II APA-52 - History

Sumter II

(APA-52: dp. 13,910; 1. 468'9; b. 63', dr. 23'3; s.
16.5 k.; cpl. 449; trp. 1,563; a. 2 5", 8 40mm.; cl.
Sumter)

The second Sumter, ex-AP-97 ex-Iberville (MC hull 474), was laid down on 3 April 1942 by the Gulf Shipbuilding Co., Chickasaw, Ala., for the Waterman Steamship Co., launched on 4 October 1942; sponsored by Mrs. J. F. McRae; and acquired by the Navy on 30 April 1943 as AP-97. She was converted into an attack transport (APA) by the Maryland Drydock Co. Baltimore, Md., and commissioned on 1 September 1943, Capt. A. D. Blockledge in command.

Sumter sailed to Virginia and completed fitting out at the Norfolk Navy Yard. She then loaded a complement of 31 landing craft and a Beach Party unit before sailing to the west coast where she became the flagship of Transport Division (TransDiv) 26. She spent most of December 1943 conducting landing exercises off San Clemente, Calif. with elements of the 25th Regimental Combat Team, 1th Marine Division.

Sumter stood out of San Diego on 13 January 1944 en route to Lahaina Roads, Hawaii, to rendezvous with other units of Task Force (TF) 53, the Northern Attack Force for the Marshall Islands operation. She arrived there on 21 January and the force sortied the next day. Sumter and three other transports landed three battalion landing teams of the 25th Marines on the atolls of Ennumennet and Ennubirr on 31 January to establish field artillery positions in support of the main landings at Roi and Namur.

Sumter completed landing all of her troops by 3 February and sailed the next day for the South Pacific for amphibious training. After exercises in New Caledonia and the Ellice and Solomon islands, she returned to Pearl Harbor on 8 April. As a component of Task Groun (TG) 62.4, Admiral R. K. Turner's Northern Attack

Force for the invasion of Saipan and Tinian, the transport again loaded elements of the 4th Marine Division and sailed on 29 May. The attack force refueled at Eniwetok and was off the landing beaches at Saipan before daybreak on 15 June. Covered by an intensive air-sea bombardment, and receiving incoming fire from enemy artillery, mortars, and automatic weapons, the assault wave of marines landed at 0843. The transport remained off the beaches until the 24th when she sailed to Eniwetok and Pearl Harbor. Before leaving Saipan, she had sent more supplies and equipment to Blue Beach One, treated wounded direct from the beaches and, prior to sailing, received on board an additional 8B battle casualties from LST-218.

Sumter arrived at Pearl Harbor on 21 July and trained there until 12 August when she was routed to Guadalcanal for additional amphibious exercises with the 81st Infantry Division. She sailed from Lunga Point, on 8 September, with the troops embarked to participate in the invasion of the Palau Islands. After landing advance assault troops and a Beach Party at Anguar on the 15th, she stood off the island as the floating reserve for the 1st Marine Division's attack on Peleliu Island. The transport landed troops of the 81st Division on Anguar on 17 September and remained as a casualty evacuation ship until sailing to Manus, Admiralty Islands, on the 23d.

Sumter was routed from there to Finschhafen, New Guinea, where she embarked men of the 10th Army Corps and sailed with Reinforcement Group 1 for the Philippine Islands. The troops were landed at San Pedro Bay on 22 October, two days after the initial assault. The ship steamed to Guam, loaded elements of the 77th Army Division and disembarked them at Leyte on 23 November. She next steamed south to New Guinea and Sansapor. At the latter port, she loaded troops of the 6th Army Division and sailed with the San Fabian Attack Force on 30 December 1944 for the Lingayen Gulf area of the Philippines.

On 8 January 1945 a kamikaze plane crashed into Callaway ( APA-35) approximately 600 yards ahead of Sumter, and Sumter took over as formation guide, The next morning the assault troops, including those from Callawag, were landed on the Lingayen beaches. She steamed back to San Pedro three days later and made a turn-around voyage back to Lingayen with reinforcements which were landed on the 27th. She sailed for Seeadler Harbor and voyage repairs, thence to the Solomon Islands.

Sumter arrived at Guadalcanal on 19 February 1945 and began amphibious exercises with the 22d Regimental Combat Team of the 6th Marine Division in preparation for the invasion of Okinawa. She stood out of the Guadalcanal area on 14 March for Ulithi, Caroline Islands, where final staging was completed. The invasion force sortied on the 27th, and Sumter arrived off the beaches near Yontan Airfield in the early morning of 1 April. After landing 1,352 marines of the assault waves, the transport remained off the beach until sailing for the United States, via the Mariana Islands and Pearl Harbor, on 5 April.

Sumter arrived at San Pedro, Calif., on 30 April for overhaul. Following repairs, she trained in the San Diego area until 21 July when she sailed for the Philippine Islands loaded with army troops. After calling at the Marshall and Caroline islands, the ship arrived in San Pedro Bay on 15 August, as hostilities with Japan ceased. The transport embarked a contingent of the 33d Army Division and departed for Japan on 9 September. The troops were landed at Wakayama, Honshu, on 25 September; and Sumter headed back to the Philippines for more Army occupation troops which were disembarked at Matsuyama Japan. She returned to Subic Bay on 1 November and embarked Navy veterans for transportation to the United States.

Sumter arrived at Seattle, Wash., on 22 November 1945 and remained there until 25 January 1946 when she moved to San Pedro, Calif., to unload her landing craft. Five days later, she sailed from there for the east coast, via the Panama Canal. The ship arrived at New Orleans on 15 February but left there the following month for Mobile.

Sumter was decommissioned on 19 March in the yard of the Gulf Shipbuilding Corp., Chickasaw, Ala., and struck from the Navy list on 17 April 1946. She was returned to custody of the War Shipping Administration on 1 August 1946 for disposal.

Sumter received five battle stars for World War II service.


Sumter II APA-52 - History

While Fort Sumter is mostly known for its role in the Civil War, a fort on Sullivans Island bearing the name of Moultrie has been around since the American Revolution. The original fort was built by South Carolina Patriots to protect Charleston harbor from attack by the British. It was constructed of two walls of Palmetto tree logs and sand, which doesn’t sound like much of a defense, but the combination of materials was very adept at absorbing cannonballs fired at it by British ships.

At the time the fort first saw combat—June 28, 1776—it was unfinished and had no official name. British warships entered the harbor and exchanged artillery fire with Patriots at the fort, who were commanded by William Moultrie. The battle lasted a good part of the day and resulted in damage to the British ships, which eventually left the harbor. As you may have already figured out, the fort was eventually named after Moultrie.

For the first few years of the revolution, the British focused their efforts in the north. However, in 1780, with progress in the north at a stalemate, the British changed their strategy and shifted to stopping the rebellion in the south, counting on support from the large base of Loyalists in the region (Loyalists were colonists who were loyal to England). One of the first orders of duty was to take control of Charleston, which was done in the spring of 1780. Charleston and Fort Moultrie remained in British hands until the end of the war.

After the war was over in 1783, Fort Moultrie was left to be battered by storms and other natural elements. By 1791, very little of the original fort remained. When war broke out between England and France in 1793, the U. S. government decided that it would be wise to modernize the country’s coastal defenses. Prior to World War II, when airplanes and amphibious landing craft changed warfare, the only way for an enemy to invade another country that it was not physically connected to was by water. Thus, the best way to defend your country was to defend the coast at the places most likely to attract an enemy’s attention, such as the harbors of major cities. Because of this, the First American System of coastal defenses was authorized, and money was poured into the forts.

Twenty new forts were built on the Atlantic coast, including a new Fort Moultrie. The fort was in the shape of a pentagon and again made of wood and sand. It was completed in 1798, but since war never came to the area, it again fell into disrepair and was eventually destroyed by a hurricane in 1804.

By the early 1800s, the forts that were built during the First American System were by now outdated and in great need of new renovations. Funds were authorized for the Second American System and a third Fort Moultrie, this time made of brick, was completed in 1809. This is the basis of the fort that stands today. From its completion in 1809 up until the Civil War, not much changed other than outfitting the fort with new guns.

When South Carolina seceded from the United States on December 20, 1860, Fort Moultrie was under the command of Major Robert Anderson. Five days later Anderson made a decision to move his 85 Federal soldiers from Fort Moultrie to Fort Sumter, which was situated on a man-made island at the mouth of Charleston Harbor. Reading the writing on the wall, Anderson knew that a South Carolina militia would soon form and would most likely attempt to remove his troops from Fort Moultrie. Though Moultrie was on an island, South Carolina troops could easily come ashore at the far end of the island and then march to Fort Moultrie. Furthermore, because Fort Moultrie was a coastal defense fort, its guns were all facing the harbor and not meant to defend the fort from a rear, land-based attack, where the unlimited stream of militia men would certainly come from. By moving his men to Fort Sumter, Anderson would have a better chance of defending his men from attack, which would be an artillery bombardment from the mainland. Neither situation was ideal, but the move to Fort Sumter might give Anderson more time to await possible help from the Union army.

In the meantime, South Carolina militia took control of all forts in the area. To prepare for possible fire from Fort Sumter, the walls of Fort Moultrie were covered with sand bags to a thickness of nearly ten feet. On April 12, 1861, the Civil War began when shots were fired at Fort Sumter in an attempt to obtain the surrender of Anderson and his men, the last group of Union troops in the area. The first shot was fired from Fort Johnson, but soon all forts and batteries in the area, including Fort Moultrie, opened fire on Sumter. Thirty-four hours later, Anderson surrendered, and Fort Sumter fell into Confederate hands for the remainder of the war.

Union troops knew the only way to take Charleston was to take Fort Sumter, as it controlled the destiny of any ship entering into the harbor. When naval assaults on the fort failed, the Union decided to set up guns in the marshes of Morris Island, southwest of Fort Sumter but within range of the 100-pounder Parrott guns the Union army brought with them. Since Fort Sumter was itself a coastal defense fort, most of its guns were facing the open sea, not toward Morris Island. As a result, Sumter relied on the surrounding forts for its defense, and particularly on Fort Moultrie, for its guns naturally faced in the direction of Morris Island.

While history focuses on the Union’s 20-month bombardment of Fort Sumter, this bombardment was not solely aimed at Sumter. Fort Moultrie and the other Charleston coastal defenses were also subject to Union artillery shells. By the time the Confederates abandoned Charleston in February 1865, Fort Sumter was nothing but a pile of rubble, and the walls of Fort Moultrie were buried in sand.

In the 1870s, the latest wave of coastal defense modernization was underway, this one called the Endicott System, named for Secretary of War William Endicott. Batteries of concrete and steel were installed within the walls of Fort Moultrie, and the fort was outfitted with the latest weapons. This construction remains today.

Battery McCorkle, one of two batteries built at Fort Moultrie

During World War II, Fort Moultrie’s main objective was to defend the mines laid in the harbor from minesweepers. The mines were meant to keep German and Japanese submarines out of the area. A control tower and underground bunker were installed, and these were the backbone of the Harbor Entrance Control Post and the Harbor Entrance Command Post. All traffic in and out of the harbor was monitored from here.

Harbor Entrance Control Post

Despite all of the renovations and modernizations done to the fort after the Civil War, Fort Moultrie never saw action again. By the end of World War II, coastal fortifications had become a thing of the past. Using airplanes and amphibious landing craft, invading enemies could go right around or over any coastal forts. Both Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie, along with the rest of Charleston’s coastal forts, were decommissioned after World War II. Sumter became a National Monument in 1948, while Moultrie sat empty until South Carolina donated it to the National Park Service in 1960. It opened to the public on April 1, 1963.


A comparison of APACHE II and SAPS II scoring systems in predicting hospital mortality in Thai adult intensive care units

Objective: To assess the performance of Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II (APACHE II) and Simplified Acute Physiology Score II (SAPS II) in Thai critically ill patients.

Material and method: Prospective observational cohort study conducted between July 1, 2004 and October 31, 2005 in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Songklanagarind Hospital, an 800-beds tertiary referral university teaching hospital.

Results: One thousand three hundred sixteen patients were enrolled. There were 310 deaths (23.6%) at hospital discharge. APACHE II and SAPS II predicted hospital mortality 30.5 +/- 28.2 and 30.5 +/- 29.8 respectively. Both models showed excellent discrimination. The discrimination of APACHE II was better than SAPS II (0.911 and 0.888, p < 0.001). However both systems presented a poor calibration. The Hosmer-Lemeshow goodness-of-fit Hand C statistics were 66.59 and 66.65 of APACHE II (p < 0.001) and 54.01 and 71.44 of SAPS II (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: APACHE II provided better discrimination than SAPS II, but both models showed poor calibration in over predicting mortality in our ICU patients. Customized or new severity scoring systems should be developed for critically ill patients in Thailand.


History

The first Sub Station restaurant was opened on Broad Street in Sumter, SC, in May of 1975 by Dominic (Don) Ruffalo and his brothers Charlie & John. They brought with them a wealth of experience and knowledge in the restaurant business. For years their family owned and operated one of the largest, oldest and finest restaurants in New Jersey.

Don & John moved to Sumter and got things started. They chose a location halfway between town and Shaw Air Force Base, because it was as close to the base as they could get. Despite their backgrounds, the Ruffalo brothers were amazed at the success of this small submarine sandwich shop.

Within several months, Don was approached by persons interested in following his example. In January of 1976, the first Sub Station II Franchise Facility was launched in Charleston, SC, and in May and June of that year, two other franchises were chartered: one in downtown Sumter and the other in Columbia, SC. All 3 units are still in operation.

The original plan was to open near military bases, as they knew that’s where the biggest demand was. It was soon apparent that the entire Southeast loved Sub Sandwiches!

Sub Station II’s reputation for good subs quickly spread. From big towns to small, everyone wanted to “Dive into the taste of Sub Station II”. But, rather than roll out new franchises as fast as possible, Don chose to service his existing franchises, ensuring quality and strengthening Sub Station II operations for the long haul.

Once Sub Station II was convinced of its future, it moved ahead cautiously. By the end of 1977, there were thirteen stores in operation or under construction in strategic locations in South Carolina and three in Georgia. These locations helped Sub Station II gain market awareness, build valuable supplier relationships and establish uniform appearance and operational standards. Sub Station II was for real. Since then, several franchisees have purchased additional units, attesting to their confidence in Sub Station II’s future.


Treaty Limitations

The story of the North Carolina-class begins with the Washington Naval Treaty (1922) and London Navy Treaty (1930) which limited warship size and total tonnage. As a result of the treaties, the US Navy did not built any new battleships for the most the 1920s and 1930s. In 1935, the General Board of the US Navy began preparations for the design of a new class of modern battleships. Operating under the constraints imposed by the Second London Naval Treaty (1936), which limited total displacement to 35,000 tons and the caliber of guns to 14", designers worked through a multitude of designs to create a new class that combined an effective mix of firepower, speed, and protection.


Exhibits

Ron DeSantis, Governor
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What Is the Significance of Fort Sumter?

Fort Sumter is historically significant as the location of the first shots fired in the American Civil War. The United States began building Fort Sumter after the War of 1812 to strengthen the defense of its southern ports. After South Carolina's secession from the Union, Union forces occupied the unfinished Fort Sumter. After 3 1/2 days of battle, Union troops, led by Major Robert Anderson, surrendered.

Fort Sumter is on an island at the entry to Charleston Harbor. Although construction started in 1829, the fort was unfinished in December of 1860 when Anderson occupied it. Upon South Carolina's secession, a standoff with its state militia left Anderson and his troops access to supplies. President Lincoln's announcement that he intended to resupply the fort led to its bombardment by Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard in April 1861. Upon Anderson's surrender, Confederate troops took over the fort and occupied it for four years until Sherman captured Charleston in February 1865.

During the Confederate occupation, the fort was completed however, the ensuing battles damaged parts of the structure. After the war, the fort was redesigned and rebuilt. It served for a while as a lighthouse but was recommissioned for the Spanish-American War, World War I and World War II. In 1948, the United States decommissioned Fort Sumter as a military institute and turned the property over to the National Parks Service.


Soviet SAM Operations - SEA Versus MidEast Theatres

The Soviet S-75/SA-2 Guideline was designed primarily as a “strategic SAM”, intended to provide area defence of fixed target areas against attacking aircraft at medium to high altitudes. The command link guided weapon had a variable thrust liquid propellant rocket sustainer motor, and was supported typically by an X-band RSNA-75 Fan Song engagement radar, and a P-12 Spoon Rest 2D VHF-Band acquisition radar. Nominal redeployment time for a battery was several hours, dependent in part on battery crew proficiency, and in part on terrain, as a large convoy of vehicles was required for movements.

Perhaps most contentious matter in this discussion is what constitutes the best “measure of effectiveness” for assessing the PAVN SAM force. Over North Vietnam (NVN), most losses were statistically produced by PAVN Anti-Aircraft Artillery (AAA) batteries, in fact total US Air Force losses of 740 F/RF-4, F-105 and F-100 tactical fighters between 1964 and 1973 can mostly be credited to AAA in NVN and Laos. Declassified US statistics show a good fraction of the these losses resulted from low altitude attacks on SAM sites, and most others from low altitude attacks on other targets in an attempt to stay below the medium to high altitude engagement envelope of the SA-2. While direct losses to SAM firings appear modest, the percentage of kills to SAMs was as high as 31.5% for F-4 in 1971-73, and 17 B-52s were lost, mostly to SAMs.

Usually supported by experienced Soviet or Warsaw Pact instructors, the PAVN operated the SA-2 to best effect, exploited its limited mobility fully, and used the SA-2 to bait “flak traps”, as well as to drive US aircraft into the envelope of dense AAA fire. In addition, the large and ongoing effort to suppress or destroy SAM systems absorbed a large proportion of sorties flown into NVN.

The simple metric of counting direct losses to enemy weapon types is not a particularly good “measure of effectiveness” for assessing the effect and impact of air defence weapon types in a mixed threat environment. With no SAMs deployed in a theatre, the effectiveness of visually aimed and radar directed AAA is poor, as aircraft can attack unhindered from medium and high altitudes, out of the useful envelope of barrelled weapons. By the same token, in a SAM rich environment where AAA would be absent, aircraft can attack unhindered from low altitudes, exploiting terrain masking and performance limitations in SAMs and their supporting radar systems.

In NVN operations, the PAVN followed period Soviet doctrine very closely, and that doctrine dictated the use of mutually supporting and overlapping air defence weapons through the whole altitude envelope. The effect is synergistic, in the sense that no portion of the altitude envelope then presents a low penetration risk for the attacker.

When assessing the combat effectiveness of SAMs, on a per system basis, a much better measure is the number of kills produced per round fired, per engagement. The difficulty in producing hard analysis is that without hard data on rounds expended, this measure is difficult to produce with any accuracy. While raw statistics on losses to AAA would appear to favour AAA over SAMs in SEA operations, what proportion of the aircraft sorties flown would have entered the AAA engagement envelope had SAMs been absent, and what number of AAA systems was deployed at what personnel and expended munitions cost, in comparison with PAVN SAM battery numbers?

There are two illustrative examples from the NVN air campaigns, both falling into the latter period of the conflict.

The first is the use of the F-111A during the 1972 Linebacker I/II campaigns. Flying at very low altitudes using automatic terrain following radar, the aircraft defeated both radar directed AAA and SAMs, and incurred statistically per sortie the lowest loss rates in these campaigns.

The highest per type loss rate during Linebacker II was incurred by the B-52 fleet, exclusively to S-75/SA-2 SAM shots, despite the heavy use of onboard EW, support jamming aircraft, defence suppression aircraft, chaff bombers and fighter escorts. Had SAMs been absent from the theatre, it is unlikely any B-52s would have been lost.

The statistical loss rate of 15 x B-52D/G across 729 flown sorties is around 2 percent, the limit for sustainable losses in an attrition strategy campaign, despite the concerted defence suppression effort directed against the PAVN SAM force. Importantly, once the PAVN expended most of its warstock of S-75/SA-2 SAM rounds, no further B-52s were lost.

A factor frequently ignored in lay analyses of such campaigns is the fraction of total effort expended in providing defence suppression support for penetrating aircraft. A large proportion of tactical aircraft sorties flown during Linebacker II, including much of the F-111 effort, was directed against PAVN S-75/SA-2 SAM sites. Effort expended and losses so incurred are directly correlated with SAM deployment.

Any objective analysis of the combat effect of SAMs in SEA operations must therefore consider not only losses directly attributable to SAM hits or SAM combat damage, but also effort expended and losses to all other causes arising from operational measures taken to suppress or evade SAM batteries. From this perspective, Soviet SAMs were the single most effective component of the PAVN IADS.





US Air Force F-105D Thunderchief evading an SA-2 missile over North Vietnam (US Air Force image) .


SA-2 missile in flight over the NVAF airfield at Kep (US Air Force image).


Data from Middle Eastern conflicts, other than Desert Storm, is far more fragmentary, and more than often contaminated by a reluctance on the part of the Israelis, Egyptians and Syrians to fully disclose combat losses. There have been ongoing public arguments ever since over who killed what when .

Major clashes involving the use of Soviet SAMs were the War of Attrition between Israel and Egypt, the 1973 Yom Kippur war, and the 1982 invasion of Lebanon.

The first Soviet SAMs in the region were 15 to 25 SA-2 batteries delivered during the late 1960s, but were not particularly effective. They were crewed by Egyptians with Soviet instructors, and some were captured in the Sinai advance of 1967. Syria during this period deployed the SA-2 and fielded 18 batteries, later supplemented by 16 SA-3 batteries.

In early 1970, the Soviets initiated Operation Caucasus, and deployed an overstrength division of Soviet PVO air defence troops, comprising 18 battalions in three brigades, led by General Smirnov of the PVO, and drawn from PVO units in the Dnepropetrovsk, Moscow, Leningrad and Belarus districts. Each battalion comprised four SA-3 batteries, a platoon of ZSU-23-4 SPAAGs and supporting SA-7 MANPADS teams. While these units were ostensibly “instructors”, they were dressed in Egyptian uniforms and provided full crewing for the deployed SAM systems. Through early 1970 the PVO units were deployed along the Suez Canal. Operational doctrine was similar to NVN, with batteries relocating frequently, and setting up ambushes for Israeli aircraft, using multiple mutually supporting batteries.

The Soviet S-125/SA-3 Goa was designed primarily to provide point defence of fixed target areas against attacking aircraft at low to medium altitudes. The command link guided weapon had a fixed thrust solid propellant rocket sustainer motor, and was supported typically by an X-band SNR-125 engagement radar, and a P-15 Flat Face UHF-Band acquisition radar, with respectable low altitude clutter rejection performance. Nominal redeployment time for a battery was several hours, not unlike the S-75/SA-2, dependent in part on battery crew proficiency, and in part on terrain, as a large convoy of vehicles was required for movements.

In subsequent engagements against the Israelis, the Soviets are claimed to have shot down five Israeli aircraft using the SA-3, making for a cumulative total of 22 lost to SA-2, SA-3 and AAA during this period.

The Egyptians sought to retake their 1967 losses in 1973, and to support that campaign procured three brigades of SA-6 Gainful, comprising 18 batteries. Unlike Soviet batteries using the “ shoot and scoot ” 1S12 Long Track radar, Egyptian SA-6 batteries mostly used the semi-mobile P-15 Flat Face and P-15M Squat Eye UHF radars. Syria is claimed to have procured two brigades.

When the Egyptians crossed the Suez Canal, and the Syrians stormed the Golan Heights, their ground forces and strategic targets were protected by SAM and AAA units. It is widely acknowledged that the Israelis suffered heavy losses of aircraft during the fighting in 1973. Exactly how many were lost to SAMs, and to which type of SAM, has been less well documented. Israeli public claims are that 303 aircraft were lost in combat, and other sources identify 40 of these as lost to SAMs, and between 4 and 12 to Arab fighters. This puts most Israeli losses as a result of low altitude AAA fire, and emulates the pattern observed in SEA – SAMs denying the use of high and medium altitude airspace, driving aircraft down into the envelope of high density AAA.

The Soviets were cast out of Egypt in early 1976, followed by Sadat’s peace treaty with Israel and Egypt’s realignment away from conflict with the West. Chinese and Western contractors took over support of the Soviet SAM systems.

The next major conflict to see SAMs used in anger was the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982, named “Operation Peace for Galilee”, and intended to drive the PLO out of Lebanon. This well thought out and planned campaign was an absolute rout of the Syrian SAM belt installed in the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon. The first attack of the 9 th June, 1982, saw 17 of the 19 Syrian SAM batteries annihilated, the Israelis using airborne standoff jammers extensively, and supported by emitter locating systems, also fired large numbers of AGM-45 Shrike and AGM-78 Standard anti-radiation missiles, in addition to domestically modified Shrikes with rocket boosters, launched from trucks like Katyusha rockets. Crippled and defenceless SAM batteries were then annihilated with free fall bombs.

The Soviet doctrine of ambush attacks, SAM system mobility, clever use of emission control and decoys, camouflage of SAM sites, and the use of supporting electronic warfare assets was abandoned by the Syrians completely. Hurley’s summary of Syrian behaviour in the Winter 1989 issue of Air Power Journal is perhaps the best summary:

“Syrian SAM operators also invited disaster upon themselves. Their Soviet equipment was generally regarded as quite good Syrian handling of it was appalling.

As noted by Lt Gen Leonard Perroots, director of the US Defense Intelligence Agency, “ The Syrians used mobile missiles in a fixed configuration they put the radars in the valley instead of the hills because they didn't want to dig latrines -- seriously. ” The Syrian practice of stationing mobile missiles in one place for several months allowed Israeli reconnaissance to determine the exact location of the missiles and their radars, giving the IAF a definite tactical advantage on the eve of battle. Even so, the Syrians might have been able to avoid the complete destruction of their SAM complex had they effectively camouflaged their sites instead, they used smoke to “hide” them, which actually made them easier to spot from the air. It is ironic that the Syrians, who have been criticized for their strict adherence to Soviet doctrine, chose to ignore the viable doctrine that emphasizes the utility of maneuver and camouflage. According to a 1981 article in Soviet Military Review, alternate firing positions, defensive ambushes, regular repositioning of mobile SAMs to confuse enemy intelligence, and the emplacement of dummy SAM sites are fundamental considerations for the effective deployment and survivability of ground-based air defenses.”

The 1982 Bekaa Valley debacle was repeated on a much larger scale in January, 1991, when US led Coalition air forces annihilated Saddam’s SAM defences, the decisive blows inflicted in the first few hours. While that campaign is well documented in detail elsewhere, like the 1982 campaign, large scale use was made of anti-radiation missiles, support jamming, and precision weapons. The deployment pattern of Saddam’s forces also differed little, with few batteries attempting to exploit any inherent mobility in their systems, and often undisciplined emissions permitting easy location, targeting and attack. The composition of Saddam’s SAM force comprised much the same SA-2, SA-3, SA-6, SA-8 and SA-9 SAM systems, supplemented by some modern French supplied Thales Roland SAMs and Tiger series radars.

There is another consideration, which is difficult to establish through published sources, which is that of the education, training, proficiency and competencies of the SAM battery crews operating Syrian and Iraqi systems during this period.

Study of the plethora of detailed technical materials now available on Soviet SA-2, SA-3, SA-5, SA-6 and SA-8 SAM systems, and discussions with former Warsaw Pact missileers, indicate that the full effectiveness and performance potential of these first and second generation Soviet SAMs required crews which were highly intelligent, with a good technical education, and both very highly trained and proficient. Tight teamwork in the missile control van was essential, as the crew had to integrate and interpret outputs from multiple sensors, using often rudimentary analogue displays. Critical tasks such as initial target acquisition, and target tracking, were more than often performed manually, with the operator having to concurrently interpret more than one display output, in real time. Limited electronic counter-counter measures were available, requiring a smart operator to interpret and understand the type of hostile jamming, to manually select alternate frequencies and modes.

This was paralleled by challenging demands for technical personnel, especially in the setup and tear down of SA-2 and SA-3 batteries, which a highly proficient crew could relocate in about six hours. Launchers and vans had to be deployed, everything connected by cable harnesses, antennas needed alignment, and the whole system had to be tested before it could go online. While the SA-6 and SA-8 were designed for shoot and scoot mobility, maintenance of their complex systems was no less challenging, requiring vanloads of test equipment. Training for all of these systems required a van full of equipment to provide simulation inputs for the SAM control system.

The failure of Syrian and Iraqi missileers to follow Soviet operational doctrine, tactics and deployment technique indicates that the root cause of poor effectiveness in combat was deeply deficient training of missileers, and prima facie, also support personnel. The effectiveness of the very same SAM systems, operated by Soviet, Warsaw Pact and PAVN personnel, was vastly better, whether in the Middle East or South East Asia.

The 1999 bombing of Serbia is the case study, which closes this loop. While Serbian SA-2, SA-3 and SA-6 batteries were largely ineffective due to the use of standoff jamming, anti-radiation missiles and stealth, they also proved vastly more difficult to kill due to smart use of mobility, camouflage and emission control. A single SA-3 battery, commanded by then LtCol Zoltan Dani, downed an F-117A and an F-16C, and damaged another F-117A. Prior to the conflict, Dani worked his crew for weeks in the simulator, driving up proficiency and crew teamwork. During the conflict, he relocated his battery as frequently as possible, and exercised strict emission control. His battery survived and inflicted the single most embarrassing combat loss the US has suffered for decades. Serbian SA-6 crews, following the same hide, shoot and scoot doctrine, mostly survived the war. The Serbian SAMs and radars were largely of the same vintage and subtypes, as those used by the Iraqis and Syrians. The fact that NATO forces were unable to quickly kill off the Serbian SAM batteries forced continuing and ongoing sorties by NATO support jamming and defence suppression aircraft, driving up the cost to drop each bomb delivered several-fold. NATO forces launched 743 AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation missile rounds for very little damage effect – around one third of the number used to cripple Iraq’s much larger air defence system in 1991.

If we compare Desert Storm to Allied Force, the SAM systems were largely the same, but NATO had better electronic warfare systems, many more Emitter Locating Systems, and an abundance of newer smart munitions, including newer and better anti-radiation missiles. The fundamental difference was in the personnel operating the SAM systems – better educated, better trained, and highly motivated.


SNR-125M1T Low Blow UNV radar head, UNK operator van and 5P73 launcher with four 5V27D Goa rounds loaded, all components of a Serbian SAM battery responsible for killing a US F-117A Nighthawk and F-16C (images © 2009, Miroslav Gyűrösi).





Chinese LD-2000 demonstrator during trials, this 30 mm Gatling gun SPAAG was derived from a naval CIWS point defence system developed to kill anti-ship cruise missiles. The stated role of this SPAAG now includes the defeat of munitions in flight.


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FEATURE PAGES - Berkeley County

Courtesy of the Fredrick Tucker Collection – 2017 One of thousands of historic addresses – sites, in Berkeley County and the S.C. low-country, to explore and enjoy on the pages of Roots and Recall!

Image courtesy of the Segars Collection – 2004

C.O. Greene, 1940 photograph. Images(s) and information from: The Library of Congress – HABS Photo Collection

Courtesy of the Moss Photo Collection – 2014

Image courtesy of photographer Bill Segars

Courtesy of the Fredrick Tucker Collection – 2017

St. James’ Church – Goose Creek – enjoys the distinction of being the earliest parish in the Province outside the city of Charles Town. It is believed that the first church was built as early as 1680, soon after the first St. Philip’s in Charles Town. The presently beautifully preserved Church of St. James’, Goose Creek, was built in 1714-19. Only the walls of St. Andrew’s on the road to Magnolia and Middleton Gardens on the west side of the Ashley River are older. Goose Creek, wrote the Rev. Robert Wilson in 1922 is from the Dutch “Goes Creek” which appears in the records of Probate Court for a transfer of land on Goes Creek. In Holland “goes” would be pronounced “goose.” (Information from: Names in South Carolina by C.H. Neuffer, Published by the S.C. Dept. of English, USC)

Courtesy of the S.C. Dept. of Archives and History – E.B. Bull, Photographer

Lawson’s Pond Plantation: Image courtesy of photographer Ann L. Helms – 2018

Staircase at Halidon Hill Plantation, ca. 1984 – Image courtesy of Louis M. Jackson

Rice Trunk – Courtesy of the S.C. Dept. of Archives and History

Courtesy of the Segars Collection – 2004

Taveau Church is a small frame African American church about a mile north of Strawberry Chapel on Highway 44 today. The State highway map of 1961 calls it “Tabo Church.” It was built by the Taveau family, white plantation owners, for the use of their slaves in the early 1800’s, and until recently there were white men on the vestry. It is probably the oldest African American church in Berkeley County. (Information from: Names in South Carolina by C.H. Neuffer, Published by the S.C. Dept. of English, USC)

Courtesy of the Segars Collection – 2006

St. Thomas’ Parish was also created in 1706, and the first parish church built in 1708 on the neck of land between Wando and Cooper Rivers, about two miles from the village of Wando, formerly known as Cainhoy. However, Pompion Hill Chapel had been built in 1703 in what became St. Thomas’ Parish. Dalcho termed it the first church built in the province outside the city of Charles Town. Later research has indicated that the first chapel at Goose Creek was erected some years prior to this, perhaps as early as 1680. The first chapel at Pompion Hill was erected soon after the arrival of the Rev. Samuel Thomas, first missionary to Carolina from the newly organized Church of England Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts. Created in 1701, they sent the Rev. Mr. Thomas to Carolina in 1702. He was the third missionary sent to America and served the people of the Cooper River from Goose Creek to Pompion Hill, making his home at Silk Hope, the plantation of the Governor, Sir Nathaniel Johnson. Writing from “Sir N. Johnson’s Study” in 1705 to the Society in London, Mr. Thomas said, “Here is one church already erected since my arrival by the peculiar direction and religious care of Sir Nathaniel Johnson and at the charge of the parish.” Pompion Hill Chapel on the eastern side of the east branch of the Cooper River took its name from the plantation on the river which it adjoined. The local pronunciation is Punkin, or as Judge H. A. M. Smith wrote “the contemporaneous spelling of Pumpkin is Pompion.” The plantation was written as Ponkin Hill or Ponkinhill Plantation in some deeds before the name was extended to cover the larger tract of plantation which was aggregated by the Rev. Thomas Hasell. He was the first rector of St. Thomas’ Parish, appointed in 1709 after the creation of the Parish in 1706. He married Elizabeth Ashby, daughter of John Ashby, the Second Cassique of nearby Quinby Barony. When the Rev. Mr. Hasell died in 1744, he had served the parish of St. Thomas’ and Pompion Hill Chapels of Ease for thirty-five years. Pompion Hill Plantation of 1540 acres was inherited by his eldest son, Thomas Hasell. In 1750 it was purchased by Samuel Thomas, grandson of the first SPG mis-sionary of that name, and who was the son-in-law of Rev. Thomas Hasell, since Samuel Thomas, II, had married Elizabeth Ashby, II. Before 1784, Pompion Hill Plantation became the property of the Parish, either through purchase or gift from Samuel Thomas. In later years after 1823 Pompion Hill Plantation was owned by Alfred Huger and its name was changed to Longwood, and the name Pompion Hill restricted to the bluff above the river of ten or twelve acres on which the fine old Chapel stands. (Information from: Names in South Carolina by C.H. Neuffer, Published by the S.C. Dept. of English, USC)

C.O. Greene photographer 1940 – Images(s) and information from: The Library of Congress – HABS Photo Collection

Thomas T. Waterman image from 1939 – Images(s) and information from: The Library of Congress – HABS Photo Collection


Watch the video: Downtown Columbia, South Carolina in 4K.