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Best Of 2008

(January 1st - December 30th, 2008)

Peter A. Barnes

An Art Deco Airplane in an Art Deco Airport

Zoltán Bánfalvy

"Area of the Voiceless" - Abadoned Soviet A-bomb storage

Kunmadaras, Hungary

May 1, 2008, 10:33 UTC (12:33 local time)

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© 2008 Zoltán Bánfalvy, Some Rights Reserved. Creative Commons License


Images of a bygone age - Cold War memories

The Soviet Army had stayed "temporarily" in Hungary between 1944 and 1991.

Brief history of the airbase

Kunmadaras, in Hungary, was one of the largest Soviet fighter bases outside the Soviet Union. It housed two complete regiments (wings): a reconnaissance regiment with Su 17M-4, Su 17UM-3 and Su 24MR, and a fighter-bomber regiment with MiG 27 and MiG 23. After The Wall came down in 1989, the Soviets left the base in April 1991. The base is no longer used as a military installation, and parts of it are now in use for the storage of agricultural supplies and equipment. The runway is used by agricultural planes or drag races.

The units stationed at Kunmadaras were:

  • 1. Guards Fighter-Bomber Regiment (1. GvAPIB)
(official name: 1. Red Guards - twice Red Flag Guards Fighter-bomber Aviation Regiment, member of the Kutuzov-order)

  • 328. Independent Guard Reconnaissance Regiment
(official name: 328. "Vislenski" Guards Independent Recconnaisance Aviation Regiment, member of the Suvorov- and the B. Hmelnitzkiy-order)

The 1. Fighter-Bomber Regiment had nuclear weapons at its disposal, with a special storage facility.

The storage facility

This is a special storage facility, type Granit 2 (or 3), designed for A-bombs. The storage facility had its own crew, who were not allowed to speak, not allowed to meet anyone from the staff of the airbase. That's why the area of the base - where they served - was called the "Area of the Voiceless". Usually, these soldiers had absolutely no idea about which country they were in!

This area of the base was guarded VERY strictly. The ruins of the multiple fences (concrete, electric, alarm, etc) still exist.

The Soviets wanted to drop these Nukes on North-Italian targets.

Nowadays the storage is abandoned, it is guarded only by the thorny bushes.

The scrap-metal thieves have stolen everything which was movable around the facility. Luckily, the massive doors of the storage were too heavy for them, so they couldn't get in...

Source: Italic text: Károly Vándor's museum about Kunmadaras air base

Articles, photo galleries about the base:

  • Zoltán Bánfalvy: My pictures about the area on Google Maps. Lots of pics, texts are in Hungarian.
  • Sweethome: A "Hungarian battlefield archeologist's" photo gallery about the air base.
  • Charlie21: An another "Hungarian battlefield archeologist's" photo gallery about the air base.
  • Index.hu: Aticle about the area. (Hungarian) Az Index cikke a Néma Szektorról, nagyon érdekes!
  • Hiddenplaces.de: The same kind of storage facility in Germany. It's perfectly preserved.

Europe / Hungary

Lat: 47° 24' 9.49" N
Long: 20° 45' 43.95" E

Elevation: 87m

→ maps.google.com [EXT]

Precision is: High. Pinpoints the exact spot.

HW: Canon EOS 350D, Peleng 8mm F3.5, home-made panoramic head, Garmin Geko201;

SW: PTGui & Smartblend, Pano2QVTR

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