The Role of Airpower in the Iran-Iraq War

Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama: Air University Press, 1988. Presumed First Edition, First printing. Wraps. 94 pages. Pages 1-47 had been separated from rest of the book, but have been reglued, has some residual weakness. Includes Disclaimer; About the Author; Preface; Introduction; and Notes. Also includes chapters on the Arab Air Warfare Experience; Backgrounds of the IQAF and IIAF; Reasons for the War; The War--The Initial Stages; The Air War; and Conclusions. Also includes Glossary and Bibliography. Dr. Ron Bergquist upon his graduation with a BA in Geography from the University of Texas at Austin in 1968, he was commissioned through Air Force ROTC as a 2nd Lieutenant. He began his Air Force career with two tours in Vietnam, was assigned to stateside duties in Texas, Virginia, California (twice), Alabama, and at the Pentagon, and spent eight years in three different assignments in Germany. He served in combat in both Vietnam and in Desert Storm. After over 26 years in the Air Force, Dr. Bergquist retired on January 1, 1995, at the rank of Colonel. He began his second stint as a graduate student in January 1997 and was accepted into the master's program at the UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) in March of the same year. He graduated with a Master of Science in Library Science degree in May 1999. After earning his Doctor of Philosophy in Information and Library Science in May 2006, he was appointed an adjunct professor in the summer of 2006 and then a Clinical Assistant Professor in January 2010. He was appointed Coordinator for the Undergraduate Program in 2013, then served as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs from 2016-2020. This report is an outgrowth of questions raised in the fall of 1980 and spring of 1981 about the conduct of air operations in the war between Iran and Iraq. Unlike previous Middle Eastern wars, this one had continued over a protracted period while we in the United States and the U.S. Air Force had been able to observe it only from a distance. This report examines the air war between Iran and Iraq, but rather than attempt simply to lay out what happened in the war, it attempts to discern why Iran and Iraq used their airpower as they did. The results of this study do not call into question any basic US Air Force airpower approaches, but they do highlight significant considerations that affect the use of airpower by Third World nations. he Iran-Iraq war has been a unique Third World conflict-two countries with
large, relatively untested military forces ; well equipped with the best Western and Soviet arms; slugging it out in isolation over an extended period . And one of the most puzzling of its unique characteristics has been the relatively ineffectual use of airpower displayed by both sides. US airmen have been mystified about the conduct of the air war. They have not understood why some seemingly irrational things have been done while other obviously vital things have not. Herein lies the problem and the reason for this report . In observing air warfare in the Third World, military analysts tend to make certain, often unconscious, assumptions about the logic behind the employment of airpower. These assumptions are based on our own historical experiences in four wars and are reinforced to a considerable degree by the successes of the Israeli Air Force against Arab air forces . Our institutional memory and perception holds that ours is a rational, sensible way to employ airpower to achieve military and national ends. Analysts tend to assume that any airpower practitioner will recognize the essential elements of a situation and will react in a "rational" manner, given his capabilities and limitations.
Condition: Fair.

Keywords: Iran-Iraq War, Airpower, Middle Eastern Wars, Arab-Israeli War, Suez Crisis, Six-Day War, Yom Kippur War. Airpower, Deterrence, Counterair, Command and Control

[Book #80386]

Price: $27.50

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