Biography of Martyr Abbas Babae

‘Innovation is born out of limitations’, Iranian military hero and Martyr Abbas Babae reminds his fellow officer after they struggle with the lack of replacement parts for their fighter jets. This was our war hero always inspiring fellow officers that they should never give up in the most difficult of times. Let us study the lives of these marble men of yester years who inspire us to put aside our own interests and sacrifice for the greater good of the regime.


Aviation journalist and Iran-Iraq war expert Tom cooper reports: His research indicates:
… Col. Abbas Babae, an officer differently described as the mastermind of IRAF’s capability to keep its F-14 fleet intact or simply a war hero.”

Abbas Babae was born in a middle class religious family in Qazvin in 1950. He studied in Dehkhoda primary school and graduated from Nezam Vafa high school in his hometown Qazvin, and entered the air force pilot school in the year 1969. When he completed his initial training, he left for United States in order to complete his pilot training in 1970.

According to the rules of the college, Babae had to live with an American roommate for two months, at first, the Americans would justify this work as a way of enhancing the student’s English language, but the reality was something else. Abbas would do all his religious practices in any condition and he hated the licentiousness and immorality existing within some American students. Describing Abbas’ morality and behavior in a report his roommate stressed, “Babae is a reserved and isolated person and indifferent to customs and social norms. His behavior actually indicates his negative stance against western culture. He is strongly committed to the traditional culture of Iran. He also pointed out that Babae would go to a corner and talk to himself (Babae would actually perform his daily prayers in that corner).

After completing his training, he returned to Iran, during that period the advanced aircraft F-14 launched, and Babae being among the gifted, skilled pilot of fighter aircraft F-5 with some other colleagues flew the F-14, and he was transferred to the Isfahan base. With the rise of struggle against the Shah’s rule, Babae, as one of the Revolutionary Air Force Personnel entered the army.

After the success of the Islamic Revolution, his days engaged as the head of the Islamic Community Database to safeguard the achievements of the glorious Islamic Revolution. He was committed to his work and his management expertise gave him new heights, on 27 September 1981, he became the commander of the Eighth Air Base. He used its existing facilities for the development and prosperity of the rural poor living on the outskirts of the Base. Apart from strengthening the Islamic Revolution, he also over viewed the drinking water supply, sanitation, electricity and the education in the village. His remarkable service to the people, endless commitment as a commander of the Base was recognized and got him promoted as a Colonel and a Deputy of Air Force Operations on 30 November 1983. He was transferred to Tehran. His courage, self-sacrifice and a strong spirit of martyrdom are penned down in the golden pages of history of the sacred defense and the army air forces.

With more than 3000 flying hours with different fighter air crafts, majority of his time was spent on flight operations or battlefields in the southwest. From the year 1985 until his martyrdom, he accomplished 60 combat missions successfully. He was a pioneer in all combat missions.

During the war, after carrying out their missions when Air Force fighters wanted to land safely in their country, they had to fly at low heights with full speed because of enemy’s radar. Consequently, Iranian fighter pilots were mistaken for enemy fighter pilots and unfortunately hit by mistake during the defensive attacks. This had a very negative impact on the soldiers. Martyr Babae solved this problem, designed a comprehensive plan, and executed it until the end of the war. With this plan, he could rescue pilots from being killed and was able to speed up organizing process and operations in Air Force.
He found out that the Air Force bases are near to the front lines in the south, so he determined a path from the base to the front line and assigned a pilot for each base, keeping in mind the Anti Aircraft artillery base. He knew that Iranian pilots had more information about air tactics and they could recognize Iranian fighters from hostile ones. Every day before sunrise, these pilots fixed their defensive positions, with the list of fighters and their take off schedule. During the day when a fighter approached the defensive positions mentioned in the list, the Artillery got informed not to shoot and the fighters landed home safely.

This plan had a 90% success rate and the pilots regained their lost confidence.

Babae who was a brave veteran of battlefields was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General on 24 October 1983.

He was also the Commander of Ra’ad Base, an army air force base in the 8th Valfajr operation. This base was responsible for airborne transportation of forces, especially martyr’s bodies, wounded soldiers, equipment and close fire back up.

On the morning of 6 August 1987, which was Eid Al Zoha, General Babae with one of his fellow pilots of Air Force went on a mission in order to identify the work area operations; they took an F-5 training aircraft from the Air base of Tabriz and entered Iraqi airspace. While returning on the completion of their mission he was gunned with an anti aircraft gun, he died in the air over Iraq.

It is said that a few days before his martyrdom, in response to his friend’s insistence to attend the Hajj ceremony, he replied, I will reach on the day of Eid Al Adha.”

Major General Abbas Babae was 37 years old at the time of his martyrdom. He was a great man raised in the school of martyrdom; he was a fighter whose piety and devotion was a roaring sea and whose moments of life were full of ups and down and tumultuous waves. From the time, he knew himself he struggled a lot to take steps only for the sake of Almighty Allah’s satisfaction.

Iranian military hero and martyr Abbas Babae finally on the day of Eid achieved his aspiration to attain martyrdom; his name is immortalized in the history of Iran. He is a legend who has a burial place of honor at a shrine in his hometown Qazvin.

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