MANPADS (Man Portable Air Defense Systems)–Will We See These?

A recent post concerning the unexpected presence of high tech Russian made SA-24, man portable anti-aircraft missiles in no-fly zone over Libya had an interesting side note, “Venezuela, for example, is buying thousands of SA-24s, and international watchdog groups worry that they will end up in the hands of narco-traffickers and insurgent groups.”

Actually I’m a bit surprised we haven’t seen more instances of terrorist or criminal organizations using high tech weapons. Perhaps criminals recognize that this could provoke unwanted additional attention.

(Video of the weapon in operation here)

5 thoughts on “MANPADS (Man Portable Air Defense Systems)–Will We See These?

  1. Maybe Dale Brown’s Hammerheads was prophetic. SEALs, missiles? Fiction does come true, but I am waiting for the Nautilus (Jules Verne’s) to come back. For those who have read the original, the sub only submerged in the “vortex” and there is no evidence she sank. Also remember, Buzz Sawyer and Dick Tracey. I just saw a wrist radio (telephone) the other day.

  2. I would not be surprised if the Narco terrorist wind up getting their hands on MANPADS or even a Foxtrot or a Tango submarine to deliver their crap. It would invite so much unwanted attention from everyone.

    • We’ve been engaged in maritime counternarcotics patrols for the last 35 years, and for the last 35 years, various people from time to time have raised the possibility that the smugglers would start employing more formidable weapons and tactics.

      So far, there has been exactly one case of a trafficker shooting at a USG interdicting law enforcement boarding team (and that one case is based on suspect reporting), and we’ve yet to see anything other than semi-automatic weapons on board as seized vessel.

      We could only hope that they acquire a real submarine to smuggle their wares. That way, we’d stand a real chance of detecting them.

      • If we could get the narco-sub operators to wear wrist radios we could drop time delayed anvils on them.

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