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September 30, 2016 / 27 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Israel Air Force’

Northern Israeli Road Closes After Third Mortar Shell Hits Golan Heights

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

Israeli authorities closed Route 98 in the Golan Heights on Tuesday evening after the third mortar shell of the day came whistling into the region from Syria.

The attack came less than 24 hours after two projectiles fired from Syria had also landed on Israel’s side of the border.

It is also the fifth time mortar fire has reached Israel from Syria since the start of a ceasefire negotiated by Russia and the United States; the truce was to begin simultaneously with the start of the festive Islamic holiday of Eid al-Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice.

Israeli warplanes struck targets near Quneitra late Monday night in retaliation for Monday’s shelling.

The IDF Spokesperson confirmed that two surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) were fired by Syria at the fighter pilots during their mission, but said no harm was caused. All Israeli military personnel returned safely to base.

The IDF continues to maintain the mortar fire is spillover from the savage civil war raging in Syria between regime forces, which include Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and Hezbollah guerrilla fighters, and those of the opposition, including a range of Western-backed “moderates,” Kurdistani forces, and radical Islamist terrorist groups such as Jaish al Islam, Al Qaeda-linked Jabhat al Nusra, and Da’esh (ISIS.)

Nevertheless, Israel has said it holds the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad responsible for what takes place in its territory. The Israeli government has also said it won’t tolerate any attempt to harm Israel’s sovereignty or the security of her citizens.

Hana Levi Julian

Report: IAF Trained with Pakistani, UAE Air Forces

Thursday, September 1st, 2016

Israel Air Force pilots last week trained for the first time with pilots from the Pakistani and United Arab Emirates air forces, as part of the “Red Flag” exercises in Nevada, Israel’s Channel 2 News reported Thursday. The teams from the two countries that do not have diplomatic relations with Israel nevertheless trained and cooperated with the Israeli team during the exercises. The Red Flag exercises also included pilots from the US and Spain and featured dozens of attack sorties, dogfights, bombings, and long-range flight midair refueling.

The report noted that the fact that the Pakistani and UAE teams did not object to flying alongside their Israeli counterparts suggests that they were more interested in studying and exercising than in politics. The lists of participating teams is composed solely by the Pentagon, and participating countries cannot modify it — but they can refuse to participate.

Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh III addresses Airmen at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. / US Air Force photo by Senior Airman Brett Clashman

Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Mark A. Welsh III addresses Airmen at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. / US Air Force photo by Senior Airman Brett Clashman

A senior IAF official told Chanel 2 News that “the Americans are excellent pilots, it’s clear they know how to fly and fight.” He said the Americans downed Israeli planes in dogfights, “but we downed them, too.” Each sortie involved many dozens of fighter planes, as well as refueling and intelligence support aircraft, and took place in day and night-time conditions, testing the teams’ ability to work together.

But the official noted that “this is not just about flying together, but about preparing for the mission ahead of time. You see right away who’s good and who’s not. There’s no place to hide. Everything stands out. We got better all the time, and the real deal was to learn from our mistakes.”

The exercise included IAF F-16I “Sufa” (Heb: Storm) aircraft, and for the first time Boeing 707 refueling aircraft. “It’s the nearest exercise to real warfare you can have,” the official said, “dealing with enemy planes, anti-aircraft missile threats—including the S300 systems Iran has—and cyber attacks on our aircraft. We still need to explore our performance, but the pilots are saying it was good.”

Next year, Israel will host the “Blue Flag” exercises, with the air forces of the US, France and Poland.

JNi.Media

Pentagon Official Says F-35 ‘Failing to Deliver’

Wednesday, August 24th, 2016

Dr. J. Michael Gilmore, the Pentagon’s senior advisor to the Secretary of Defense on operational and live fire tests and evaluations of weapon systems, has written to Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein, and the Pentagon’s acquisitions chief Frank Kendall that he is unhappy with the progress of the most expensive fighter plane ever produced on planet Earth, the Lockheed Martin F-35 — whose delivery to the Israel Air Force is scheduled to start in September.

Gilmore’s Aug. 9 memo, published Wednesday by Bloomberg News, suggests “the program is actually not on a path toward success but instead on a path toward failing to deliver” the F-35’s much touted, 21st century near-sci-fi capabilities, “for which the Department is paying almost $400 billion by the scheduled end” of the plane’s development in 2018.

Gilmore cautioned that “achieving full combat capability with the Joint Strike Fighter is at substantial risk.” He says that despite promises to the contrary by the manufacturer, “most of the limitations” that plagued the F-35’s software, data fusion, electronic warfare and, the most crucial aspect of a fighter aircraft — weapons employment, appear to persist.

Gilmore warned that Lockheed Martin’s F-35 program “is running out of time and money to complete the planned flight testing and implement the required fixes and modifications,” observing that “flight testing is making progress but has fallen far behind the planned rate.” He pointed out that the F-35’s most sophisticated software capabilities “are just being added,” and that the system is, to put it mildly, full of bugs, which “continue to be discovered at a substantial rate.”

The US Air Force and the US Dept. of Defense both released statements saying Gilmore’s concerns were nothing new, and the F-35’s issues are being dealt with.

David Israel

Flight School

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Israel’s Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu sits inside an Apache Helicopter and speaks with Amir Eshel, the Commander in Chief of the Israel Air Force during a visit of Netanyahu at the Tel Nof Air force base, on August 17, 2016.

Netanyahu served in the elite Sayeret Matkal unit, but could it be that perhaps he really wanted to be a pilot?

Netanyahu at Air Force Base

Photo of the Day

Israeli Air Strikes Silence Gunfire from Syria

Wednesday, July 27th, 2016

Arab media reported Tuesday that Israeli aircraft responded to fire from Syria with missile fire aimed at a target in Syria.

after an open area in Israel was struck by fire from across the Israel-Syrian border.

An IDF spokesperson told Al Arabiya the Air Force “successfully targeted the source of the fire in Syria.”

Israeli aircraft fired two missiles at a building in Baath City on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights, near the border, the state-run Syrian SANA news agency reported.

The air strikes caused “material damage” and said they were aimed at “raising the morale of terrorist groups supported by Israel” after losses inflicted by the Syrian military, the Syrian government said in its statement. Baath City is held by Syrian regime forces.

Hana Levi Julian

Israeli, US Leaders Celebrate New ‘Adir’ F-35 Stealth Fighter Jet

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and IAF Chief of Staff Brig.-Gen. Tal Kelman joined top U.S. government and Lockheed Martin officials on Wednesday in celebrating the rollout of the “Adir” — Israel’s first F-35A Lightning II Stealth fighter jet.

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro and Israeli Minister without portfolio Tzachi Hanegbi also joined the celebration, as did 400 other guests from government, military and the industrial sectors. Texas Governor Greg Abbott and U.S. Congressman Craig Goldman were present as well.

“Israel is proud to be the first country in the area to receive and operate [the Stealth fighter],” Liberman said. “The F-35 is the best aircraft in the world and the choice of all our military leadership at its highest level. It is clear and obvious to us and to the entire region that the new F-35, the Adir, will create real deterrence and enhance our capabilities for a long time.”

The aircraft has an advanced capability to defeat emerging threats, including advanced missiles and heavily-defended air space, combining advanced low observable stealth technology with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment support.

“The F-35 technology represents the crown jewel of air-power superiority and will therefore be a great contribution to the IDF’s air force,” Liberman said, stressing that diplomatic tensions between Israel and the U.S. have not affected security cooperation between the two nations.

“It’s not a secret that we have from time to time some disagreements, some disputes, with the U.S. on the political level regarding some solutions with our neighbors,” he noted. “But when it comes to Israel’s security, we really enjoy full understanding, fruitful cooperation and strong commitment to our security concerns and needs.”

Lockheed Martin chair, president and CEO Marillyn Hewson agreed. “We’re honored to partner with Israel and help strengthen the deep and lasting partnership between our two nations,” she said. “The F-35 will help Israel remain a beacon of strength and stability in the region and support a safe and secure homeland for generations to come.”

Israel’s first delegation of pilots will arrive next month in the United States to begin simulator and ground-based training on the new stealth fighter. A total of 12 pilots are set for training at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona and by the middle of next year will have completed a 100-day U.S. Air Force training program that prepares them for actual flight training on the aircraft in Israel.

By 2018, another 10 to 15 pilots are to be selected for another round of training, according to a report last week by Defense News. Meanwhile, Israel has sent dozens of people to Eglin Air Force Base to attend maintenance training courses that can last between two to four months.

The IAF is working with Lockheed Martin and F-35 program officials to complete the construction of the Israeli logistics center at Nevatim Air Base in in the Negev. The center will use Lockheed Martin’s Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS), a worldwide sustainment network that provides maintenance support for the aircraft for the duration of its projected 55-year lifespan.

The point of the independent logistics center in southern Israel has to do with the unique conditions under which Israelis are forced to live: The constant threat of rocket fire and other terror attacks makes it necessary for Israel to be able to maintain and repair its F-35 fleet immediately, on site, if and when the aircraft is being used during a conflict.

Hana Levi Julian

IAF Targets Hamas in Air Strikes on Gaza After Mortar Attacks [video]

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

The Israel Air Force carried out an air strike in Gaza Wednesday evening in retaliation for six mortar attacks aimed at IDF soldiers over the past 24 hours by Gaza terrorists.

Arab media reported the Israeli fighter pilots targeted the Gaza airport, which has already been bombed and destroyed in previous action by the IDF. Four more Hamas targets were struck in southern Gaza as well, according to the IDF Spokesperson.

“The IDF holds Hamas responsible and accountable for all attacks originating from the Gaza Strip,” said IDF Spokesperson Peter Lerner in a statement released Wednesday night.

“The IDF will continue to operate in order to protect the civilians of southern Israel from all terrorist threats above and beneath ground that pose a severe violation of Israel’s sovereignty.

“Both Israeli and Palestinian civilians benefit from and deserve to live without the constant concern of escalation. We will work in order to maintain and restore the quiet that the people deserve.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/iaf-targets-hamas-in-air-strikes-on-gaza-after-mortar-attacks-video/2016/05/04/

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