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Thread: Operation Credible Sport: C-130s modified with rockets for hostage rescue

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    Jon
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    Operation Credible Sport: C-130s modified with rockets for hostage rescue

    This post discusses the details of an abandoned hostage rescue plan, called Operation Credible Sport, to extract the Americans held during the Iran Hostage crisis. The plan involved modifying a C-130 Hercules airplane with the addition of numerous rockets, to create the largest short takeoff and landing plane in existence, which would then land inside a soccer stadium near the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Delta Force operators would then extract the hostages, and the plane would take off from inside the stadium and land on a nearby aircraft carrier.

    First, the good stuff - a GIF of the modified plane in action:



    The backstory:

    On November 4th, 1979, a group of Iranians took over the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, and held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days during the Iran Hostage Crisis. This was, and still is, the longest known hostage crisis in history.

    Iranians storm the gates at the US Embassy in Tehran, brandishing a giant photo of Ayatollah Khomeini:


    America had two secret plans to rescue the hostages. The first one, Operation Eagle Claw, failed terribly. The second one, Operation Credible Sport, was one of the most daring rescue plans in history.



    Operation Eagle Claw involved 120 Delta Force soldiers, 12 Army Rangers, and 15 translators. Critical to the mission was the use of eight RH-53D Sea Stallion helicopters. During the mission, some of the helicopters were damaged after flying into a rare type of sandstorm called a haboob. Then another one of the helicopters crashed into a transport aircraft, causing a fire that killed eight servicemen. Operation Eagle Claw was a total failure. In Iran, Ayatollah Khomeini credited divine intervention on the behalf of Islam, claiming that God "threw sand" at the helicopters. Jimmy Carter blamed his loss in the 1980 US Presidential election mainly on the failure of the mission.

    The famous Sea Stallions, in sand camouflage aboard USS Nimitz:


    After Operation Eagle Claw failed, the US made a second and lesser-known plan to rescue the hostages in Iran: Operation Credible Sport. The idea was to overcome the flaws of Operation Eagle Claw, namely the heavy lift helicopters, by creating a "Super STOL" (Short Takeoff and Landing) fixed-wing aircraft to extract the hostages along with the military operators.

    The plan was to take three C-130 Hercules cargo planes, and heavily modify them, specifically by adding 30 rockets mounted in various spots all over the fuselage, wings, and tail. This modification was an enhanced version of something called RATO (Rocket-Assisted Take Off), and it would enable them to take off and land the enormous planes near-vertically. The plan was to land inside Amjadiyeh Stadium across the street from the US Embassy in Iran, storm the embassy with Delta Force operators, extract the hostages, and then take off from within the stadium. From there, the modified C-130 would land on an aircraft carrier.

    The planes were carefully tested out, and performed surprisingly well, immediately breaking various aviation records for short takeoffs and landings. One of them suffered a catastrophic fire during testing, preserved for history in the following GIF:



    The failed plane was dismantled and buried for security reasons, but the mission was almost ready to go when a diplomatic solution succeeded. Per the provisions of the Algiers Accords, the hostages were released on January 20, 1981, as President Reagan was sworn in to office.

    The hostages return:






    Related:
    Airplane short takeoff/langing records
    James Bond in Octopussy flies world's smallest jet through a hangar

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    Perspectives, signifigant history

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon View Post
    This post discusses the details of an abandoned hostage rescue plan, called Operation Credible Sport, to extract the Americans held during the Iran Hostage crisis.
    The backstory:
    On November 4th, 1979, a group of Iranians took over the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, and held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days during the Iran Hostage Crisis. This was, and still is, the longest known hostage crisis in history.
    Jimmy Carter blamed his loss in the 1980 US Presidential election mainly on the failure of the (Eagle Claw) mission. Per the provisions of the Algiers Accords, the hostages were released on January 20, 1981, as President Reagan was sworn in to office.
    The hostages return:
    Cue Ted Nugent's "Bound and Gagged" https://www.lyrics007.com/lyrics/ ted-nugent-bound-and-gagged Link offered but intentionally not fully active.
    At the risk of censure for politically charged replies, cannot bad theatrical performances be laid by a director on performers? What previous years wrought had nothing to do with it?
    Algiers Accords were just window dressing. A figurative reincarnation of Theodore Roosevelt was bound for the podium Jan 20. Potential carbonization of Iran was not far behind. Whether actuality or mere implied threat, a prime example of effect by strategic presence.
    Last edited by Toolmaker51; 07-11-2018 at 08:59 PM. Reason: A bit of mis-quoting....
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    If the sands of Iran had been turned to glass one ot the options which had been on the table at the time the whole world might have been saved several decades of turmoil and strife
    Rocket assist for Military aircraft has been around a long time
    smokeless Aerojet 15-KS-1000 Jet-Assisted-Take-Off (JATO) unit used to boost military and commercial aircraft. The motor produced 1,000 pounds of thrust for 15 seconds. Multiple units were used to lift bombers during the Korean War. Approximately 256,000 of these motors were produced.
    Operation Credible Sport: C-130s modified with rockets for hostage rescue-a19680550000cp01.jpg


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