Tuesday June 23 - Airshow Hatzerim Airbase
After the ceremony an airshow was performed, and in an hour they showed pretty much the full arsenal. There was a formation team with the Fouga Magister that flew very tight formation. The show had a high pace, it just was one spectacular demo after the other. Spitfire, later in formation with a F-16I, f-15I' 3 in formation, one hanging on a 707 tanker, a Sikorski HH-53 refueled from a hercules, immediately changing demo to a landing and dropping ground troops, followed my a hoist demo. Pairs of Blackhawks coming to pick up those troops again, while protected by Cobra's, who started by shooting rockets at target in the desert. Before, 2 Apache's had already 'secured' the area, or 'softened the target' by shooting up 2 targets with their 30mm canon. That gun is LOUD! There where solo demo's with F-16I, an beefed up F-16 specific for Israel, it has Conformal Fuel Tanks on the fusalage, it is almost square now, not pretty, and it kills performance, and also with an F-15I, which gave a very spectacular performance, lots of afterburner, and lots of flares. The show was fast, spectacular, but most important, aimed to please the public, something that european airshows lack since the last 10-15 years. The demo's where nice close to the public, flying all around. It was a great show, and combined with the ceremony, it was a proof of the pride that the israeli people have in the defence forces.

Ben Jansen

Pictures by Dave Burns, Achim Keuffner and Ben Jansen.

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