On Thursday, the British Royal Air Force's "Cobra Warrior" exercise was concluded. IAF F-15 fighter jets participated, along with IAF transport planes, including Boeing 707, C-130J and C-130 Hercules.
Alongside the IAF, various British Royal Air Force (RAF) airplanes participated, including F-35 fighters, as well as planes from other countries, including Italy and Germany.
As part of the exercise, dozens of aerial sorties were conducted, with over 50 fighter jets in each. IAF fighter jets practiced air-to-air and ground-to-air combat scenarios with the other forces, as well as scenarios over enemy terrain. In addition, the transport planes practiced several scenarios of aerial refueling under fire. This deployment provided an opportunity to practice tactical flights against an advanced threat, in a new and unfamiliar environment.
This is the first fighter deployment of the Israeli Air Force to the United Kingdom, and the first joint exercise of the Israeli Air Force and the Royal Air Force of this magnitude. The exercise was designed to maintain the competence and readiness of the forces and was an important milestone in strengthening the strategic cooperation and international common interests between Israel and the United Kingdom. It also provided opportunities of mutual learning between the various participating air forces.
Commanding Officer of the IAF Air Division, Brig. Gen. Amnon Ein Dar, said, "This is the first time we are participating in such an exercise of this magnitude in England, it is a very special and important exercise for the IAF - first of all in the historical dimension, the Israeli Air Force was actually formed out of the British Air Force, so there is a special opportunity to close a circle. The exercise is also significant in the training it allows us. We participated in an exercise flying alongside the British, German and Italian air forces with a very high level of performance, which gave us the opportunity to send our people for the highest quality training. We learned many lessons here that we will take home and implement in our combat doctrine. This exercise is part of a successful year for the cooperation between the IAF and RAF, which is growing closer. In the past year we held three very significant exercises together and are now participating in a large, professional and advanced exercise led by the RAF."