How are sniper or pilot kills confirmed in times of conflict?


How are sniper or pilot kills confirmed in times of conflict?

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11 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments


Anonymous 0 Comments

Snipers typically work with spotters who will corroborate any kills they make.

Pilots have gun cameras and radar tracking that can confirm kills from guns and missiles.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Snipers in modern warfare don’t work alone, or in isolation. Hence there will be a witness, not to mention recordings of the shot. Sniper teams keep very detailed notes about every round, after all your life depends on accuracy and the ability to recreate a shot.

Pilot kills could be identified and verified by radar recordings. Nothing really happens in isolation, there is always a means of verifying fact.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Modern aircraft have gun cameras and there are both AWACs planes and radar/satellite imagery available for confirmation of any incidents.

Modern snipers work in tandem with a spotter, if not an entire team in support. More than enough witnesses for confirmation.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Can’t speak to the sniper but can speak about the pilot side of things.

For Air to Air, every screen in the jet is recorded along with voice comms. Paired with TAC C2 data, you can figure out the sort of each missile, and did that contact die.

For Air to Ground, it can be via targeting pod or post strike Battle Damage Assessment.

For those wondering, an absolute insane amount of work goes into identifying who is hostile and minimizing civilian casualties. Is it perfect? No, but that’s the horrible nature of war.

Source: Am fighter pilot

Anonymous 0 Comments

As for pilots, with air-to-air kills there’s something called the gun camera. It’s not necessarily tied to the gun, but there is “tape” or solid state memory that records the HUD view. This is useful for training and post-mission debriefing. Also, with air to air kills you can also claim a “half” kill if you damage an enemy but can’t confirm the kill, or if you damage them and they escape or leave the fight.

With air-to-ground kills, to echo the other poster, there’s something called a “battle damage assessment” done after every airstrike done by a manned aircraft. It’s never done by the pilots themselves, it’s done by intelligence officers, usually via drone or satellite footage/reconnaissance obtained after or during the airstrike. To echo the other poster talking about the combat pilot in Vietnam, pilots are never told their “body counts” because it’d be terrible for morale.

The only missions where it can be very obvious how many people are dying are close air support missions done at lower altitudes in support of troops on the ground. Those can be low enough that the pilots can make out “results,” to be reserved in the wording.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Confirmed kills isn’t really a thing. It isn’t something that any branch of the military tracks or keeps a record of. The only way it is “confirmed” is when a soldier reports it and keeps a personal tally himself.

Anonymous 0 Comments

A) either a wingman or a spotter confirms the kill

B) They’re not confirmed and other people have to dig through records to see if that even happened.

Exaggerations of kill records were common before gun cams, especially with aircraft doing ground attack roles. The USAF claimed more tanks destroyed than North Korea had, while the Germans during battles like Smolensk (the second one) claimed more tank kills than what the Soviets had.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Generally they aren’t. Success is less of if you killed and more of if achieve some other objective.

For snipers, that’s usually if the target is no longer actively a threat, which could be a kill, an injury or other disabling impact, or even that they know that you know where they are and are potentially capable of hitting them the risk isn’t worth it.

For pilots, air-to-air would usually be destruction of the target aircraft or disabling it with minimal difference if the pilot bailed beforehand. Air-to-ground/sea is similar to a sniper in that the target is no longer a threat

Anonymous 0 Comments

Aircraft have recorders which track everything on the HUD and cockpit displays, but a BVR kill might need confirmation from other assets like ground or airborne radar. Air defence systems have controllers who control (among other things) all the fighters and track enemy aircraft.

Some people have mentioned “gun cameras”, those aren’t a thing any more. The aircraft just records the HUD and voice the whole time, not just when weapons are being used.

Sniper kills, they’re not really. It’s up to the sniper team themselves to verify if they hit what they shot at.