Only hours after landing in Israel, F-35 jets took off for their first sortie, escorted by F-16I fighters.

Upon the completion of the ceremony that marked their arrival to Israel, the new fighters were taken to the Hardened Aircraft Shelter in which technical personnel prepared them for flight.

A press release added:

“Assisted by American technicians from “Lockheed Martin” and the USAF, the Israeli technical crew approached the new aircraft for the first time.”

Maj. Roei, ‘Golden Eagle’ Squadron’s technical officer said:

“We checked the aircraft and did everything we could in order to confirm their fitness throughout the night. This morning, our men woke up to a new day and a new era.

“It is a pleasure having the aircraft here after a long period of preparing the base for it. We tested the procedures we decided upon ahead of time and understood what we should preserve and what we should change. These tests are the essence of establishment teams.

We will continue experimenting with different procedures and changing them as we go along in the near future, in order to adapt the jets to us and us to the jets.”

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Gerald is an experienced senior manager and consultant within the defence sector and an ex-Royal Navy weapons engineering apprentice. His specialism is covering strategic defence issues of a political nature of both national and international relevance.
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Mike Saul
Mike Saul
6 years ago

IDF has a very good track record of procuring the right equipment from domestic and international suppliers.

The procurement of 50 F35I (A) is a big vote of confidence in the programme.

Despite the cost overruns and time delays the F35 will not only be a military success but a commercial one as well.

As the UK makes around 15% of F35 we will enjoy the rewards.

6 years ago
Reply to  Mike Saul


Despite what the Kremlin/Ayatollah media & its adoring blogosphere surrogates might declare, Israel is actually thrilled to have this airfcraft.

In part because they have been granted good leeway with regard to integrating domestic systems but also because they were granted a good few early build slots.

6 years ago
Reply to  joe

If the Israelis continue to show enthusiasm for this aircraft over time then indeed all the critics will have to be viewed in a different and a lot more skeptical light. The Israelis do not accept and tolerate mediocrity in their forces, and tend to speak it as it is rather than diplomatic pleasantries even if they come through ‘officially’ generated/backed leaks.