He pauses for a moment, then yells again: "Canines ... SAMs at right three!"
I look to the right and spot two missiles coming up out of the clouds a mile to the east.
"Canine 73 is tally!" I reply.
A few seconds later, I spot another one.
"Canine 74 ... SAM right three ...high!" I scream.
I keep a close eye on the SAMs and check my HUD. We're twelve miles from the target. My chest is heaving as I attempt to catch my breath. The SAMs continue to rocket upward, trailing contrails of white smoke. Soon, though, they run out of momentum and begin to fall back toward earth. Still terrified, I call up my air-to-ground mode and prepare to drop my bombs.
A few seconds later, Grumpy calls out: "Canines ... sky puke!"
The cloud layer has completely obscured the Scud production facility. Descending through the clouds to drop our bombs would be suicide, so Grumpy wants us to drop them from high altitude.
The CCRP steering line bisects my HUD, and the TD box is directly over the target. As the DME counts down, I correct left to put the flight-path marker over the steering line. At 7.8 DME from the target, the max-toss cue appears in the HUD. I clear outside for SAMs and, at
6.7 DME, I hit the pickle button, then wait for the bombs to release.
"Canine 71 is bombs away," Grumpy calls out.
My DME continues to count down, but I never get a solution cue. I check the DME, and it reads 2.3. Son of a bitch! Why aren't my bombs coming off?
"Canine 73 ... hook left!" Grumpy yells.
"Canine 73 ... my bombs aren't coming off!" I reply.
"Canine 73 ... come left now!" Grumpy repeats.
Already past the target, I make a hard left turn and attempt to go over it again during the egress. I'm not sure what's wrong with the system, so I call up profile two and prepare to drop manually. I roll out of my turn approximately two miles north of the target. As soon as I hit the pickle button, the bombs come off.
"Canine 73 is bombs away," I radio.