An honest mistake:
Smart Bombs Lose Direction
The Associated Press, April 29, 1999
By Robert Burns
W A S H I N G T O N, April 29 The thing about many of the
precision-guided bombs NATO is using in the Kosovo conflict that makes them amazingly
precise is also the thing that sometimes makes them agonizingly imprecise..
The issue is lasers.
Bombs that rely on laser beams to find their
targets like the one that went off course Tuesday and hit a residential area in
Serbia, reportedly killing at least 20 civilians can miss by miles if fog, clouds
or smoke get between the optical seeker in the bombs nose cone and the
target on the ground.
In such instances, the laser beam is scattered
and the bomb sees and homes in on light particles in the fog, smoke or cloud,
putting it on an incorrect course as it hurtles to the ground. This is why NATO pilots
have scratched many bombing runs over Yugoslavia rather than risk an errant strike.
In clear weather, the laser can be pointed
precisely on a target and a direct hit is usually the result.
The Problem with HARMs
Other highly accurate missiles, such as the HARM
anti-radiation missile that went
astray today and struck a house in Sofia, Bulgaria nearly 50 miles from its intended target can go bad for
other reasons. The HARM missile, designed to home in on radar emissions, was launched from
an F-16CJ fighter today and aimed at an early warning radar in Serbia that had illuminated
the NATO plane.
Apparently the radar was turned off
[nasty Serbs] at the last moment, making it invisible to the missile, which kept flying in search of another radar signal, according to
NATO officials, who said they did not yet have a full explanation of the incident. The
HARM missile is one of the most-used weapons against radar...
Lying again, NATO says: It was SMOKE that
explains errant Bulgaria bombing
by Jackson in Yugoslavia
April 29, 1999.
AP News Service
BELGRADE, Yugoslavia (AP) _ Russia pushed a peace
plan for Yugoslavia on Thursday as a chagrined NATO sought to explain how another of its missiles went
astray, damaging a house near the capital of Western ally Bulgaria...
Bulgarian officials said a NATO AGM-88 HARM
missile slammed late Wednesday into a house in a suburb of the capital, Sofia. Konstantin
Varbenov was shaving on the top floor of his two-story home when the missile blew away his
roof. His wife, child and grandmother, also in the house, were shaken but there were no
Bulgarian President Petar Stoyanov demanded an
In Brussels, NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said an
alliance jet fired the missile "in self-defense" at Serb
anti-aircraft batteries but it "strayed from its target and unintentionally landed in
Bulgaria," 30 miles from Yugoslavia's southeastern border.
It was not the first time NATO missiles have gone
awry in the Kosovo conflict...
NATO said the target was a military barracks but
the missile apparently veered off course when smoke
interfered with its guidance system...
At least five more bombs get "smoke
interfered" and fall on Bulgaria since the above described episode:
|Experts in Sophia Saturday, May 15, 1999 inspect part of the missile
which landed Friday near Bulgaria's border with Yugoslavia... The projectile struck some
two kilometers (1.2 miles) from the village of Varbovo, 10 kilometers (6 miles) east of
the border with Yugoslavia, making a six meter (18 foot) wide crater. It was the sixth
missile to go astray and hit Bulgarian territory since NATO launched its air campaign
against neighboring Yugoslavia.
(AP Photo/Dimitar Deinov)
Our note: Bulgaria have inherited more than 20 Chernobyl like nuclear plants. If
any of those got accidentally hit - all of the problems in the Balkans would be instantly
As the bombs rain on Bulgaria,
its government keeps silent. They even permit NATO to use their air space for attacks on
Yugoslavia. All other countries bordering Yugoslavia do the same. No-one dares complain to
mighty NATO, let alone challenge its self-proclaimed "right" to invade any
country's sovereignty. Only the Serbs, at the end of the 20th century dared challenge
[ NATO's "mistakes" ]