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Vipers in the Storm
Chapter Review

Click here to download RealPlayer for free!CHAPTER 32

This chapter is accompanied by a video recording of the actual "Heads Up Display (HUD)" tape made during the events described below.  To see the following video clip, you must have RealPlayer installed on your computer system.  Click here to download this player for free.

This video clip is best viewed after reading the actual chapter in Keith Rosenkranz's book, as he describes in great detail the sounds and sights you are about to see and hear.  If you do not have a copy of his book yet, you can order one here and save 30% off the list price.

RealPlayer Enabled  Click here to view the Chapter 32 HUD Tape.

My twenty-first combat mission was scheduled for midnight, and I would be flying in the number three position of a four-ship.  Cut and Weebles made up the first element, and I was paired with Jackal.  Our call sign would be Alpo 55, and the four of us would attack the Tawakalna division of Iraq's Republican Guard.  A few minutes before we began our briefing, some of the pilots who had just landed stopped by the weapons shop to warn us about the heavy AAA they encountered near our target.


"Captain Keith Rosenkranz ... Alpo 55 ... 3255 alpha ... We got two MK-84s on board ... Takeoff is 20:00 ... TOT is 21:56 ... Date is 17 February '91 ... Tail number is 509."

The four of us take off precisely at midnight and cruise across the Gulf to our refueling track.  After Cut and Weebles push north, Jackal and I take turns on the boom.  Ten minutes later, I make a climbing turn to the north and tell Jackal to take spacing.  I level off at 24,000 feet and accelerate to 400 knots.  Forty miles south of the IP, I hear Cut and Weebles on the radios as they prepare to roll in on the target.

"One's dropping on numerous vehicles on the left here," Cut radios.

"Copy," Weebles replies.  "Understand just left of the road?"

"That's correct.  There's a road going north-south intersecting an east-west road.  There's vehicles right by my bombs."

"Copy ... Looking," Weebles says nervously.

The radios are silent for a few seconds.  All of a sudden, Weebles keys his mike and screams with excitement: "Okay, we got lots of AAA!  Two's rolling in on the AAA!"

"AAA massive!" Cut shouts.

The radios fall silent.  "Come on, Weebles," I think.  "Say something."

Moments later, Weebles keys his mike and yells: "Okay, two's off on the AAA!  Lots of AAA in the target area!"

I touched down at 03:05, and, during the debrief, I found out why things were so calm over the target area.  Weebles put his tape in the VCR to show us his attack.

"I've already dropped my bombs at this point," Cut said as we watched the video of Weebles rolling in. 

"There were tracers everywhere, and I thought for sure I was going to take a few hits."

While standing in front of the television, Weebles pointed toward the bottom of the screen.

"Look at these muzzle flashes.  Watch what happens to the one on the right."

As Weebles continued with his attack, flashes of gunfire appeared at the bottom of the screen.  All of a sudden, Cut's bombs hit directly on top of the southern AAA site.  Seconds later, Weebles pickled his bombs on the northern site.

"These guys never knew what hit them," Weebles said.  "Imagine what the guys at the northern site were thinking when Cut's bombs hit."

"They must have realized they were next," Jackal observed.

"They sure as hell did," Cut interjected.  "And they got exactly what they deserved."


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