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B-52 Maritime Strike 2020. Historical training scenario.

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B-52 Maritime Strike 2020. Historical training scenario. - 10/10/2020 9:34:46 PM   


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My latest Harpoon HCE/HUCE scenario, a training scenario based on contemporary events, and with B-52s!!!
B-52 Maritime Strike 2020. Historical training scenario.

A Harpoon Commander's Edition scenario for EC2003 Battle for the Mediterranean Battleset and the HCDB2-170909 (or later) 1980-2025 era Platform Database. This scenario is designed with Advanced Scenario Editor Build 2017.013 and to be run with HCE 2015.008+ or later.

This scenario is designed to be played from the Blue/NATO side or from the Red/US-Morocco side. You should play a few times first the Blue side to avoid spoilers, and only later play the Red side.

Image: A B-52H Stratofortress assigned to the 5th Bomb Wing, Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, parks on the flightline at RAF Fairford, England, Sept. 4, 2020, three days before the simulated attacks against USS Roosevelt (DDG-80), South West of Spain. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jesse Jenny, took by a US serviceperson on duty, and in consequence in public domain).

B-52 bombers were deployed many years with anti-surface ship capability, in prevention of an all-out war with the Soviet Block. So, thirty B-52G based some with the 42nd Bombardment Wing in Loring AFB, ME, and some others with the 43rd Bombardment Wing in Andersen AFB, Guam, were equipped with the capability of load each one eight AGM-84 Harpoon from 1983 to the end of B-52G operations in 1994. After Loring AFB closed and the retirement of the last B-52G at Castle AFB, CA, the Harpoon mission was moved to the 2nd Bomb Wing at Barksdale AFB, LA. Four B-52H models were rapidly modified (as an interim measure) from September 1994 to accept Harpoon launch control equipment pending B-52H fleet modification. By 1997, all B-52H airframes were to load and launch from eight to twelve AGM-84D Harpoon 1C, providing both the 5th Bomb Wing at Minot AFB, ND, and the 2nd Bomb Wing at Barksdale AFB, LA, full squadron strength capability. But that capability was deleted from B-52H in 2004 (perhaps coincidental with a covert early introduction in service of JASSM).

After the coming of Second Cold War from the continuous Russian Presidency of Vladimir Putin from 2012, and the great and fast expansion of the Chinese surface fleet, surges again the necessity of anti-surface warships elements.

In the B-52H inventory is at least from 2009 the stealthy AGM-154A JASSM with some interim anti-ship capability (first only with 12xJASSM in the underwing pylons, with other four more in the rotary bomb bay from June 2017, and with the full capacity of eight JASSM in the rotary launcher from June 2019). In 2020 B-52H is yet waiting for inventory introduction of the longer ranged and ship-attack specialized AGM-154C LRASM-A, from late 2018 in B-1B Lancer, and from November 2019 in F/A-18E/F Super Hornet.

Yet without LRASM, from mid-2018 B-52H executed multiple simulated maritime strike missions from Guam near the Chinese theatre of operations and the China vindicated artificial islands, flying from Andersen AFB, Guam.

At last, on 7 September 2020, two B-52H of a detachment of six of the 5th Bomb Wing, Minot AFB, ND, based a RAF Fairford, with support of four Royal Moroccan Air Force F-16C, attacked in exercise USS Roosevelt (DDG-80), one of the four US destroyers based for BDM (Ballistic Missile Defence) tasks in Rota, Spain, upgraded with a SeaRAM mount, 5"/62 gun, and other improved elements.

That's the simulation object of this simulation, with other few elements added, trying to capture the B-52 maritime strike essence.

Of course this is a training exercise and actual shots, torpedoes and missiles aren't fired and nobody is hurt ...

Enrique Mas, 10 October 2020.

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