Did you know that registration to Fighter Control is completely free and brings you lots of added features? Find out more....

Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

A forum for discussing all things related to MILITARY AVIATION including Military Aviation news. No off-topic discussions here please.
hernaman86
Posts: 193
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:27 pm

Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by hernaman86 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:05 pm

Hi has anyone ever heard the story of the RAF telling the US government they could penetrate their air defense without them knowing, and subsequently doing it?

I was told the story years ago at an airshow and want to know if anyone could actually back it up? I seem to remember the aircraft being a Vulcan or Nimrod or even a Canberra and the jet took off, did a steep climb and simply got up real close to a passenger air liner and followed it all the way to Washington, took photos of Washington and literally followed another plane out back to England?

Now it probably is a load of rubbish, and I can’t find anything on the net, but just wondered if it was true or if anyone else had heard of such an event and years ago would it have even be possible?

Im sure its Airshow B.S.

reaper493
Posts: 2051
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 10:05 pm
Location: Waddington

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by reaper493 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:21 pm

There is some truth in it, I believe it was Vulcan (s), how ever not heard the bit about the air liner before.

Mike

hernaman86
Posts: 193
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:27 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by hernaman86 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:25 pm

argh interesting! so someone else did hear this, well hopefully someone here has some more on this story and what actually happened? i think they snapped the white house and sent it to the Americans to their horror!

User avatar
#MTPhoto
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2017 3:27 pm
Location: Suffolk

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by #MTPhoto » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:35 pm

I've heard a variation of this. A Vulcan took a photo of a U2 from above with the White House in the background! I thought I heard that whilst at Doncaster on the XH558 tour.
RAF sent them a photo and also had it up at one of the squadrons head quarters.
I wonder if any of these stories are even remotely true.
Michael

Camera Equipment
Nikon D700
Nikon D300s
Nikon 17-55mm 2.8
Sigma 150-600mm C

Sparts99
Posts: 2114
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 8:02 pm
Location: London/Kent

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Sparts99 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:46 pm

I'm sure I read somewhere that Vulcans got into US airspace and flew profiles simulating dropping a nuke during an exercise, the USAF couldn't intercept them and got very embarrassed. The U2 thing sounds a bit far fetched to me unless the U2 was well below it's normal operating height. You'd need a pretty specialist camera to achieve a shot from altitude as described.
In this world there's two kinds of people, my friend. Those with loaded guns, and those who dig. You dig.

hernaman86
Posts: 193
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:27 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by hernaman86 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:58 pm

Yeah would love to find out, someone on here must be in the know! i honestly thought this was going to be laughed off!

rh226
Posts: 12137
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:43 pm
Location: Melksham, Wiltshire

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by rh226 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 4:03 pm

I heard the tale back in the '70s from someone who had been in RAF. and that it was first done in the very early days of the Canberra (possibly may even have helped the US decide to buy some).

The story went that the Yanks' high brass were bragging to our high brass about the US new total all-seeing radar coverage. They issued a challenge to the UK to penetrate their defences and gave them a month to do it. Nearing the end of the allotted month, the Yanks rang up saying "Aren't you coming then?"

The UK's response was classically British - "Already done it, old chap. I'll send you the pictures." :lol:


I also heard that it was done regularly after that with the US mostly knowing nothing about the sorties - except when we felt like letting them detect the aircraft. There was even one highly apocryphal tale of a UK aircraft orbiting over a US city for a while and then contacting their radar to say that as nobody had come to say hello and invite him in, could he please land for some fuel and a bite to eat!!
Cheers, Bob

H.A.Bucken
Posts: 1045
Joined: Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:21 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by H.A.Bucken » Mon Feb 25, 2019 4:25 pm

I was told the story by a retired Vulcan navigator- involved a Vulcan (B-1?) flying ott New York way above their A.T.C. radar. I think the navi. worked out of Scampton.
Roger.

Sparts99
Posts: 2114
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 8:02 pm
Location: London/Kent

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Sparts99 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 4:42 pm

I'd think a Canberra unlikley as it didn't have the range for a double transatlantic crossing unrefuelled? Did the Vulcan?
In this world there's two kinds of people, my friend. Those with loaded guns, and those who dig. You dig.

graham luxton
Posts: 1431
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2009 1:27 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by graham luxton » Mon Feb 25, 2019 5:06 pm

Vulcans - Google, Operation `Sky Shield`

User avatar
f106dart
Posts: 353
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2009 1:20 am

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by f106dart » Mon Feb 25, 2019 5:22 pm

Sounds like banter from a slow and boring day standing at the fence to me.

hernaman86
Posts: 193
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:27 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by hernaman86 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:07 pm

graham luxton wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 5:06 pm
Vulcans - Google, Operation `Sky Shield`
Fantastic, so the vulcans did get in!

User avatar
22A
Posts: 828
Joined: Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:47 am
Location: Peterborough

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by 22A » Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:40 pm

The versions I heard: the Vulcan did get to America undetected until it was on finals for Washington airport.
The U2 was photographed from above by a Canberra and the photo was published in a daily newspaper.

Sparts99
Posts: 2114
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 8:02 pm
Location: London/Kent

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Sparts99 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:41 pm

graham luxton wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 5:06 pm
Vulcans - Google, Operation `Sky Shield`
yes that's it. I knew there wasn't a double transatlantic crossing involved.
In this world there's two kinds of people, my friend. Those with loaded guns, and those who dig. You dig.

Red-Eye-Knight
Posts: 635
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:04 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Red-Eye-Knight » Mon Feb 25, 2019 9:29 pm

Wow this is awesome never heard anything about this before very very interesting to hear.

User avatar
teeonefixer
Posts: 517
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:39 pm
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by teeonefixer » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:46 pm

The version I heard (while working at the RAE in 1975) was that a black-painted Valiant carried out specific penetrations. Afraid I don't know any other details.

mustang5861
Posts: 496
Joined: Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:21 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by mustang5861 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:44 am

The story I heard, from an ex-Vulcan Wing Commander (sadly no longer with us), was of three Vulcans (he was flying one of them) crossing the Atlantic and entering US airspace over the north-eastern states, then turning south-west and going very low as they headed for Carswell AFB in Texas. He swore they got within 80 miles of Carswell before they were picked up and contacted, after which they continued on and made a very low-level pass over the base before landing. The reception they received was 'frosty'.

I have absolutely no way of verifying this story one way or the other, but the WgCo himself was a fine chap and not given to bullsh@tting. Make of it what you will.

Gordsmith
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:38 pm

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Gordsmith » Tue Feb 26, 2019 7:57 am

I was at RAF Scampton on 617 sqn (groundcrew) in the '60s It is a fact that three Vulcans penetrated US airspace using their ECM package, (mostly housed in the big bulge in the tail). Some time after the penetration, a letter from SAC General, Curtis LeMay was pinned up to the notice board congratulating all crew and support person on the penetration and bomb runs on assorted targets in the USA. He was not a happy bunny, but the lesson was well learned and though praise from LeMay must have had him bite through his cigar he was big enough to accept the lesson on behalf of US air defences,,.which rapidly changed!

User avatar
Morseman
Posts: 208
Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:34 pm
Location: Lairg, Sutherland.

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Morseman » Tue Feb 26, 2019 9:31 am

I spent 28 years in the RAF from age 15 1/2. The only story I heard in a similar vein was a Canberra took a photo of a U2 from above. No evidence ever provided.

Beaker
Posts: 51
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:26 pm
Location: Barnsley/Wakefield

Re: Has anyone else heard this story and is it true or even possible?

Post by Beaker » Tue Feb 26, 2019 11:18 am

There's a book called The Penetrators by Anthony Gray from 1966 about a loosely disguised Vulcan that flew over the White House on a simulated bombing run to prove a point to the yanks.

Post Reply

Return to “The Fighter Control Mess”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests