Daily News
by Gail Helmer

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Wednesday November 21, 2001

PC News
Thanksgiving Holidays
In conjunction with the U.S. Thanksgiving Holidays, COMBATSIM will not be publishing articles or news stories from November 22-23, 2001. We will resume our regularly scheduled programming on Monday November 26, 2001. Thank you and have a great weekend.

IL-2 Tech Support Forum Launched
Ubi Soft has added a brand new IL-2 Technical Support forum. One of their tech support reps, "The_Warder", will be checking into the forum regularly to aid and help with any user problems that come up with IL-2 Sturmovik. Here are a few guidelines from "The_Warder" on getting some technical support on the forum:

This board is for technical support only. If you have questions or comments about controls, historical realism, strategies, or mission spoilers, please post these threads on the General board. I can assist you if you are having trouble with installation, crashing/freezing, not starting, or any other problem you are having when trying to run this program.

Please describe the problem in full detail. This will give those who read your post a better idea of what exactly is happening. A simple “won’t work” or “does not play”, will not give us any idea how to help you. The more information you can provide, the better we can assist you.

If you are having a problem with the game crashing, freezing, or not starting, provide as much information as possible about your system. It would be helpful to cut and paste your DirectX information onto the post itself. If you are unsure how to obtain that information,

  • (1) click on the START menu button, then click on RUN.
  • (2) Type DXDIAG in the text field, then press the OK button. This should bring up the DirectX diagnostic tool.
  • (3) At the bottom of the DirectX diagnostic tool you will see a Save All Information button, click on this button and save the information as a text file.
  • (4) Cut and paste that information directly to your post after explaining the problem. Also make sure that you browse the forums to see if another player has been helped with your problem. More often than not, someone else has the same problem and got it fixed.
New Comanche 4 Demo Released
Novalogic has released an official demo of Comanche 4. The demo clocks in at 60.2 MB and includes one single-player mission. The "Eagle's Talon" mission takes place on an island in the middle of a hostile invasion. During the mission you must provide enough air support to allow friendly forces to land on the beach. Then you move on to destroying a massive cargo ship. Finally, you escort an operative who has just planted explosives to an extraction point. Of course, all of this takes place under a hail of enemy missiles and gunfire from boats, helicopters and ground troops. Download

Europa Universalis II Patch Released
Paradox Entertainment released a patch for Europa Universalis II today. The patch is available for download and fixes minor gameplay bugs and some text errors found in the tutorial. Download

Military News
BAE SYSTEMS Tactical IR Countermeasure Passes Major Milestone
The US Navy's Tactical Aircraft Directable Infrared Countermeasure System (TADIRCM) has successfully defeated an infrared surface-to-air missile in a live fire test using BAE SYSTEMS Agile Eye infrared jam head and laser.

The test, conducted at the US Naval Weapons Range at China Lake, California, on 5th November is the first time that a modern infrared missile launched at a tactical fighter aircraft has been defeated by an on-board laser-based directional infrared countermeasures system.

For the live fire test, the TADIRCM system was installed on a US Navy QF-4 drone which was flying at Mach 0.55 at low altitude when the missile was launched. The missile launch was immediately detected by the two-colour missile warning system using Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) developed algorithms. Missile declaration and laser jamming by the Agile Eye occurred very rapidly, well before the missile became a threat to the drone.

According to Ken Sarkady, the US Navy Execution Manager for TADIRCM, "This test marks the beginning of a new era in fighter aircraft self-protection. Together, the US Navy and BAE SYSTEMS have demonstrated we could quickly and accurately point a very narrow laser beam from the QF-4 drone at a small, supersonic, man portable infrared missile and jam the missile - causing a very large miss distance."

In October 2001, the TADIRCM system passed critical captive seeker and static missile tests for the US Navy, including hostile missile detection and jamming of both air-to-air and surface-to-air missile seekers, a prerequisite for the successful live fire test.

TADIRCM, an Advanced Technology Demonstration (ATD) programme, consists of an advanced missile warning system and a low profile, laser-based IR countermeasure system. It is designed to protect tactical and other fixed wing aircraft from surface-to-air and air-to air IR guided missiles. The system includes six two-colour IR staring sensors, a signal processor, a modulated IR laser and two compact pointer/trackers. The system detects and tracks incoming missiles, and then jams them with its IR laser and pointer/tracker.

Rumsfeld Lauds U.S. Special Ops Forces in Afghanistan
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld had nothing but kudos for U.S. special operations troops in Afghanistan during his daily Pentagon media briefing. He also shed some light on exactly what they're doing there.

"Several hundred" American forces on the ground have been gathering information and helping find targets for coalition aircraft, Rumsfeld explained.

"For the most part the special ops have been making assessments, and interdicting roads and looking for supplies moving north or south or east or west," Rumsfeld explained. "(They're also) attempting to prevent people who ought not to be going places, from going places."

He said several times the troops are doing a great job. "They are certainly doing exactly that which they have been asked to do and performing exceedingly well," Rumsfeld said.

The secretary denied reports American forces know where Osama bin Laden and other terrorist and Taliban leaders are, saying it would be "foolhardy" for him to try to speculate. "The Al Qaeda and Taliban leadership can be any number of places, and they move frequently," Rumsfeld said.

He also said he didn't know how much of the Taliban and Al Qaeda leadership have been killed in six weeks of bombing. "We have been targeting command and control and leadership activities where we get information that leads us to believe that Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders are gathered," Rumsfeld said. "When we do that, we're not on the ground to make body counts."

Rumsfeld acknowledged the CIA has operatives on the ground in Afghanistan and said they are working closely with U.S. military troops there. He denied, however, reports that CIA and DoD are competing in any way or aren't cooperating with each other. "They are tucked in very tight with the U.S. military," Rumsfeld said. He added the CIA personnel report through the commander in chief of U.S. Central Command, as do the military forces there.

"You can only have one person with his hand on the steering wheel, and that's General Tommy Franks," Rumsfeld said, referring to the U.S. Central Command commander.

The secretary was adamant that Taliban troops mounting an apparent last stand in the northern Afghanistan city of Kunduz not be allowed to negotiate their way out. Rumsfeld said that ultimately the Northern Alliance commanders directing the opposition forces fighting there will decide how best to deal with the situation, but that America is strongly urging them to not let the Taliban troops get away.

"The idea of their getting out of the country and going off to make their mischief somewhere else is not a happy prospect," Rumsfeld said. He would rather they be killed or taken prisoner, he said.

"Any idea that those people ... should end up in some type of negotiation that would allow them to leave the country and go off and destabilize other countries and engage in terrorist attacks on the United States is something that I would certainly do everything I could to prevent," Rumsfeld said.

Any prisoners would have to be taken by opposition forces, not Americans. "We have only handfuls of people there. We don't have jails; we don't have guards," Rumsfeld said.

Rumsfeld also took the opportunity once again to reiterate that America's goal is to stop terrorists from being a threat to the United States. He cautioned that this "won't be an antiseptic war" and that America may yet suffer casualties.

"If you're going to put people's lives at risk, you'd better have a darned good reason," he said. "And we do."

On Nov. 18, coalition aircraft flew 138 combat sorties over Afghanistan. "The sorties were largely in support of opposition troops," DoD officials said. The strikes were largely around Kunduz and Kandahar.

Three C-17s dropped 39,240 humanitarian daily rations as well as wheat and blankets. Leaflets drops and Commando Solo broadcasts also continued.

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