Two more F-35Is delivered to Israel

Middle East

One of the two latest F-35I Adirs for the IAF taxies at Nevatim after its ferry flight from Lajes.

A FURTHER two Israeli Air Force (IAF) F-35I Adir fighters arrived at Nevatim Air Base on September 15. Serials 927 (AS-18, FMS 17-5326) and 928 (AS-19, 17-5327), are the 17th and 18th to be handed over. They departed the factory in Fort Worth, Texas, two days earlier, using ‘Retro’ callsigns, and initially flew to Lajes in the Azores before continuing to Israel. A further two are due to arrive before the year’s end and 50 are scheduled to enter service by 2024. The previous two F-35I deliveries took place on July 14. All aircraft delivered to date have joined the IAF’s first F-35I unit, 140 ‘Golden Eagle’ Squadron. A second unit, 116 Squadron ‘Defenders of the South’, was established at Nevatim last April 8 and will begin to receive its Adirs in around April next year. Dave Allport

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