FRENCH AIR FORCE UNVEILS SPECIAL VANILLA-CHOCOLATE MIRAGE 2000

The special aircraft was painted to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Ouadi Doum air raid.

Special French "Vanilla-chocolate" Mirage 2000

All the elders of the French Jaguar at the Escadron de Chasse 3/3 Ardennes were yesterday invited on the Base Aérienne 133 Nancy-Ochey Officiel to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the raid on Ouadi Doum.

For the occasion, a Mirage 2000D has received a livery "Vanilla-chocolate", in tribute to the livery of the Jaguar of the time.


The Ouadi Doum air raid was carried out by French aircraft on February 16, 1986, against the Libyan airbase of Ouadi Doum in northern Chad, during the Chadian–Libyan conflict.

In an agreement made in Crete in September 1984 between the Libyan and French presidents Muammar al-Gaddafi and François Mitterrand it was established that the French and Libyan forces would both leave Chad, which was then divided on the 16th parallel with Libya and the rebel GUNT keeping the north and the French and the Chadian government holding the south. But while France respected the accords, leaving Chad in 1984, Libya only reduced its forces, maintaining 5,000 men in the country.

When on Gaddafi's orders GUNT forces attacked southern Chad in February 1986 violating the 16th parallel, French reaction was immediate: while on February 13 Opération Epervier started, which brought a thousand French troops to Chad, an air strike was prepared. 


The first move was to regroup in Bangui about fifteen Mirage F1s and Jaguars. The operation's target was to damage the airstrip of Ouadi Doum in northern Chad, a strip 3800 meters long, built by the Libyans between November 1984 and October 1985. Ouadi Doum had a great strategic importance, as only from there in Chad Libyan bombers could attack Chad's capital, N'Djamena.


More important still were the political aspects of the strike: Ouadi Doum was a symbol of Libyan duplicity. The French government intended by this action to send a message to their African allies, proving their determination to confront Libyan expansion.


On February 16, eight Jaguars escorted by four Mirage F1's left Bangui for Ouadi Doum. When the French planes attacked, they were flying very close to the ground, preventing Libyan radar and surface-to-air missiles from detecting the planes until it was too late. The planes made only one pass over the target, dropping about forty BAP 100 bombs on the airstrip, severely damaging it and making it temporarily unusable. The entire attack lasted less than a minute.



Photo credits: French Air Force

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