Seems the Czech republic is one of countries (along with Russia) that has “come forward to help the government of Sri Lanka to destroy the small aircraft of the Tamil Tiger air wing” according to an news item on the Sri Lanka News Portal. Defencenet has been more cryptic about Czech promises of aid in their latest post. Colombo page’s post though short, is specific about the goal of Czech aid being to shooting down terrorist aircraft. Scant clues that suggests Sri Lanka “getting” of something big and expensive. Something our big neighbour won’t lend or even have.
If its going to be a Czech made product, then it could be an anti-aircraft control system such as the Retia advanced command and control system (RACCOS) described extensively in a SIGNAL ONLINE (Oct 2006) ARTICLE. Jane’s has a briefer description titled “Retia AS RACCOS (Czech Republic), Anti-aircraft control systems” on it.
The whole point of this system seems to overcome the annoying difficulty of guiding anti aircraft guns to spot and hit attacking aircraft in the dark. An interesting idea given that the Sunday Time’s article on the latest terrorists air raids indicates the terrorists may have the ability to evade SLAF intercepters. A handicap that got the SLAF in the poo. If this is correct the last remaining option would be to link the multiple radar systems Sri Lanka has with the anti aircraft guns that have so far been unable to spot the LTTE’s Zlin-Z143s in the dark.
The Czech system seems rather fancy and expensive – NATO interoperable (which won’t mean much in Sri Lanka). However the critical factor might be in the SIGNAL Online article’s description of the system as a
“digital command system for short- and medium-range anti-aircraft weapons. Designed for use at the battalion and battery levels”
Of-course this is all utter speculation.
Based on a few sentences on other people’s blog posts and the odd news item. Perhaps I should not ponder cryptic sentences in blogs too deeply. Specially since I’m out of my depth. Better to stick to ginger beer, stay away from Fernet Stock and write something irrelevantly harmless.
The Czechs might just as easily unload an old Warsaw pact radar or something less complicated. I don’t know.
But there are those in the Sri Lankan blogosphere that do. For them the comment box awaits.