The Israeli Air Force on Sunday unveiled a special squadron, which contains all the special forces of the aerial warfare branch, consolidating them under one command.
"The 7th Aerial Special Forces Wing was established to meet operational needs and respond to changing and growing threats in the various arenas," according to an army press release.
The move aims "to increase the operational effectiveness of the units. The wing will function as a complementary and unique component to IAF activities through special depth, routine and emergency operations."
The IAF routinely carries out military operations in the Gaza Strip, typically targeting terror installations of the ruling terrorist group Hamas, as well as airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria, as part of the effort by Israel to ensure Tehran does not expand its military presence in the war-torn country.
The new wing will contain the air force’s elite search-and-rescue Unit 669; the Shaldag commando unit; the Frontal Landing Unit, which builds ad hoc landing strips behind enemy lines; a dedicated intelligence unit for the wing; and a special forces school.
The unit will be under the command of an officer who can only be identified by his rank and first Hebrew initial of his name, Col. “Ayin.”
IAF Commanding Officer Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin said Israel is moving into a new era in the history of the Aerial Special Forces Wing, "we are standing on the shoulders of our predecessors, who were courageous and took action, and now we are leading the way."
"Today we move forward to a new chapter," he said.