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Eastern Order of Battle

Baku Red Banner Air Defence District
in January 1, 1973
North Caucasus, Transcaucasian and Western Turkestan Military District

At the end of the sixties, major changes happened at the Baku Red Banner Air Defence District! In the late sixties because of China-Soviet border conflict, new tactical air units were needed in Transbaikal Military District. The Baku Air Defence District sent further MiG-17 units to Siberia. Example, the 2nd Guard Fighter Bomber Air Regiment moved from Kzyl-Agach airport Transcaucasian Military District to Dzhida airfield Soviet Transbaikal Military District close to the Mongolian border.

Meanwhile, the Armavirskoye Higher Military Aviation College split in two. The 627th Guard Fighter Air Regiment PVO reorganized to Armavirskoye College, later transformed into training air regiment.

The old MiG-17 model was to be withdrawn from service because it was outdated. The Baku Red Banner Air Defence District replaced MiG-17 'Fresco' fighter type to S-125 surface-to-air missile system and modern Su-15 'Flagon-A/D' interceptor type at the end of the sixties. The S-125 air defense system was able to capture low-altitude air targets.
 

S-125 Neva SA-3 Goa

Soviet officer of the 15th Air Defense Corps in front of S-125 Neva ‘SA-3 Goa’ system’s rockets in 1977

USSR Su-15 Flagon-A

Between 1971 and 1974 three fighter air regiments of the Baku Air Defence District received modern Su-15 'Flagon-A/D' type. On the picture: 364th regiment’s Su-15 ‘Flagon-A’ at Nebit Dag AB.

The most important development in the Baku Air Defence District was the go into service of S-200 very long range, medium-to-high altitude surface-to-air missile system and MiG-25P 'Foxbat-A' supersonic interceptor. The 83rd Guard Fighter Air Regiment PVO was converted from the 'MiG-19 Farmer' interceptor to the high-speed MiG-25P type!

Soviet MiG-25P Foxbat-A

Soviet high speed MiG-25P ‘Foxbat-A’ interceptor of the 83rd Guard Fighter Air Regiment PVO

USSR Air defense pilots

Air defense pilots of the 166th Guard Fighter Air Regiment PVO

 

Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973
Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973 map
Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973
Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973
Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973
Baku Red Banner Air Defence District Order of Battle in 1973

Soviet 179th Guard Fighter Air Regiment PVO’s Su-9 Fishpot-A interceptor with four RS-2US 'AA-1 Alkali' beam-riding missiles.

 

Soviet Su-15 Flagon-D

Soviet pilot of the 166 Guard Fighter Air regiment in front of their Sukhoi Su-15 ‘Flagon-D’ fighter at the Marneuli, Sandar airport

USSR MiG-25PU Foxbat-C

83rd Guard Fighter Air Regiment’s MiG-25PU ‘Foxbat-C’ two-seat conversion trainer interceptor at Rostov na Donu military airport. Photo: Alexsei Yakovenko collection

Meanwhile, a regrettable incident happened. On November 28, 1973, a Soviet MiG-21SM ‘Fishbed-J’ intercepted an intruder McDonnell Douglas RF-4E Phantom II aircraft over Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic. The Imperial Iran Air Force RF-4E Phantom II aircraft piloted by Iranian Major Shokouhnia and back seater USAF Colonel John Saunders and a Soviet MiG-21SM ‘Fishbed-J’ flown by Captain Gennadii N. Eliseev from 982th Fighter Air Regiment (Soviet 34th Tactical Air Force). This regiment wasn't part of the Soviet Air Defence Force but took part in the alert.

Captain Eliseev was ordered from ground control to press his attack at any cost. He struck the RF-4E's tail assembly with his wing. Both aircraft crashed. Captain Eliseev died. Later he was posthumously awarded as a Hero of the Soviet Union. The crew of the RF-4E Phantom II aircraft was captured by Soviet ground forces and released after 16 days.
 

Soviet Yak-28P Firebar

Soviet propaganda photo: 82nd Fighter Air Regiment’s crews in front of their early Yak-28P ‘Firebar’ interceptor aircraft in the seventies at the Nasosnaya airport