During the past year, the Israeli Air Force has participated in a record number of overseas events and international exercises, and hosted representatives and commanders of various air forces from around the world.
“International collaboration among air forces is becoming more and more integral to our work,” says Lt. Col. A, Head of International Coordination at the Israeli Air Force (IAF) Headquarters, in an interview published on the air force’s website. “This comes to play in the operational realm, which is much more populated than in the past, and includes many international forms of cooperation.”
This year, the IAF participated in a virtual Juniper Falcon, due to COVID-19, together with the US Air Force. The IAF hosted the Enduring Lightning 3 exercise, conducted with the US, during which the “Adir” F-35 squadron was introduced.
Additional cooperation led by Israel included the Tri-Lighting 2, with the US Marines and the UK’s Royal Air Force; Desert Eagle with US Air Force, which included Squadron 133 (Falcon F-15); and a UAV exercise with the air forces of the US, UK, France, Germany, and Italy.
Abroad, the IAF participated in the multinational drill “Iniohos” in Greece, together with the Spanish, French, American and Emirati air forces; and another exercise which took place in Italy and included the participation of the UK and French forces.
Furthermore, IAF commander, General Amikam Norkin, hosted General Gregory Guillot, commander of AFCENT, as well as his French counterpart, General Philippe Lavigne; Deputy commander of the US Air Forces in Europe and in Africa, Lt. Gen. Steven L. Basham; UK Air Chief Marshal, Sir Michael Wigston; and Indian Air Force Chief, Air Chief Marshal R.K.S. Bhudauria. General Norkin himself was the guest of the US Air Forces and Marines.