An F-16 in flight
Photo: AFP

IAF, Polish Air Force hold joint exercise

First of its kind cooperation between Israeli, Polish militaries sees air forces carrying out joint sorties, mock attacks and interceptions

Fighter pilots from the Israeli and Polish air forces will on Thursday complete a week of joint exercises which were held nine years after the Israeli air force held a flyby over Auschwitz.


The cooperation is the first of its kind between the two military forces and it included such tasks as mock attacks and interceptions where the sides took turns as attacker and defender.


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The Israel Air Force (IAF) stressed that the joint sorties in the exercises were side by side rather than one side against the other and that the exercise was scheduled in advance in coordination with the annual training program.


Israeli, Polish air forces hold joint exercise   (IDF Spokesman)


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On Monday Polish Air Force Commander Lech Majewski arrived in Israel to take a firsthand look at the exercise achievements and view the takeoffs and landings.


The sides are expected to plan a reciprocal exercise in Poland, when one of the possibilities is that the Israelis will have the opportunity to train and get a closer look at the Russian MIG planes, which are still in use in the Polish army as well as some Arab militaries – including the Syrian army.


Polish F-16 were the only Polish fighter jets to take part in the current round of exercises held at the Ovda base in the Negev, alongside the Israeli F-15s and F-16s. Thus the Poles join the Greeks, Romanians, Americans and Italians who have all held joint exercises with the Israeli Air Force in recent years.


The European militaries are in fact a substitute for the Turkish army which has stopped its cooperation with Israel in the last few years due to the diplomatic crisis between the two countries.


"The main goal of this exercise is to teach the combat doctrine and operational agenda of other air forces," explained one senior IAF official.


"There was an exacting observance of security levels and the strictest security standards were enforced. In spite of the high levels of operational activity in the Gaza Strip, the program remained unchanged and everything was carried out as planned."




פרסום ראשון: 03.14.12, 22:39
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