16 Facts About AC-130 gunship


Lockheed AC-130 gunship is a heavily armed, long-endurance, ground-attack variant of the C-130 Hercules transport, fixed-wing aircraft.

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AC-130 gunship has an unpressurized cabin, with the weaponry mounted to fire from the port side of the fuselage.

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The AC-130 was later supplemented by the AC-119 Shadow, which later proved to be underpowered.

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AC-130 gunship is a heavily armed, long-endurance aircraft carrying an array of antiground-oriented weapons that are integrated with sophisticated sensors, navigation, and fire-control systems.

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AC-130 gunship first arrived in South Vietnam on 21 September 1967 under the Gunship II program and began combat operations over Laos and South Vietnam that year.

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On 18 August 1968, an AC-130 gunship flying an armed reconnaissance mission in Vietnam's III Corps was diverted to support the Katum Special Forces Camp.

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The AC-130 gunship was over Saigon on 30 April 1975 to protect the final evacuation in Operation Frequent Wind.

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The AC-130 aircrew earned the Lieutenant General William H Tunner Award for the mission.

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The AC-130 gunship is considered to have hastened the end of the Salvadoran Civil War in the 1980s.

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The first AC-130 gunship to enter the Battle of Khafji helped stop a southbound Iraqi armored column on 29 January 1991.

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AC-130U gunship set a new record for the longest sustained flight by any C-130 on 22 and 23 October 1997, when two AC-130U gunships flew 36 hours nonstop from Hurlburt Field to Taegu Air Base, South Korea, being refueled seven times in the air by KC-135 tankers.

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AC-130 gunship strikes were directed by special forces on known Taliban locations during the early days of the war in Afghanistan.

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In March 2002, three AC-130 gunship Spectres provided 39 crucial combat missions in support of Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan.

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Night after night, at least one AC-130 gunship was in the air to fulfill one or more air-support requests .

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On 3 October 2015, an AC-130 gunship mistakenly attacked the Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing 42 people and injuring over 30.

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In five separate runs, the AC-130 gunship struck the hospital, that was erroneously identified as the source of attacks on coalition members.

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