1991 Gulf War Photo Feature - RAF Tornados 1
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Panavia Tornado GR.Mk 1

(Tabuk Detachment)

Tornados first deployed to Tabuk (Saudi Arabia) on 8 October 1990. The detachment comprised approximately 24 crews and 15 aircraft, drawn from various squadrons and bases. RAF Tornados also went to Muharraq and Dharan. Nine of the Tabuk aircraft were capable of launching ALARM anti-radar missiles when required. Operations commenced on the night of 16/17 January 1991, initially with JP 233 anti-runway weapons and then with conventional free-fall bombs. Lazy and ignorant press reporting of the time indicated that most of the RAF Tornados were shot down during delivery of the JP 233, whereas in fact none of the losses occurred during the attack phase of a JP 233 mission, (see our Great Aviation Myths page). From 6 February 1991 five of the Tabuk aircraft formed a TIALD laser-designator flight. Over 1500 bombing sorties and 100 JP 233 sorties were flown by RAF Tornados during the Gulf War, together with 52 ALARM and 95 TIALD sorties. Aircraft began to be withdrawn from Tabuk on 11 March.

All the photos on this page are copyright John Cotterill

Tailcode CL 'Cherry Lips' left side Tailcode CL 'Cherry Lips' right side
ZA374 'Angel Face' left side ZA374 'Angel Face' right side
ZA374 'Angel Face' seen post conflict Practice loading JP233
ZA447 coded EA 'Mig Eater' back at
ZA447 coded EA 'Mig Eater' close-up
ZD844 'Donna Ewin' visiting Muharraq ZD844 'Donna Ewin/TIALD 91' close-up
ZD851 coded AP 'Amanda Jane'
with ALARM missiles
ZD851 coded AP 'Amanda Jane' close-up

More Tornado photos on the next page

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First Created: 2 April 2002 - Last Revised: 19 April 2002
Copyright © 2002 John Hayles.     e-mail: john@aeroflight.co.uk