The IAF Missions
The IAF is one of the most advanced and indestructible air forces in the world today. The IAF is the only line of defense for the country of Israel. If anything were to happen to the IAF, the effects on Israel would be devastating indeed.
The sun was only beginning to rise as we suited up for another day's patrol of the Syrian and Iraqi borders. As my wingman and I walked to the briefing room, we were met by the bright, warm flash of light as the sun edged its way over the horizon. Dawn had come. With the dew still fresh on the ground, we walked from the briefing room to our planes for the day, the F-15E. We looked at the payload and we ran over all of our equipment checks. One we had determined that we were in good shape, we radioed to the control tower:
"Alpha, proceed to Runway 2-7."
As we made our way to 2-7, we looked once again at the gauges in our cockpit; everything was just fine. As we began to roll down the runway at Ramat David we once again heard the tower say:
"Have a nice flight, Alpha."
As we neared waypoint 4, we ran into light trouble, two IL-76's. We radioed a warning message to the two aircraft:
"Attention, unidentified aircraft heading towards the Israeli border, turn back now or you will be fired upon."
No reply came, but then suddenly made a hard turn away from the border. We continued on to waypoint 5. As soon as were turned and headed for waypoint 6, we saw them, two MiG-29's. We had no time to send out a warning message. Warning lights were flashing, sirens were wailing, the computer saying words that I couldn't understand and at the time, they had a lock-on.
My quick reaction time saved my life. I juked to the left then did a hard, downward turn to my right. The missile went right over my right tail fin, and exploded once it hit the chaff and flares that I had released only a second before I initiated my life-saving maneuver. I had to get a shot in. As I moved around to get a shot, I saw my wingman moving in, he took the shot, and the MiG was gone.
"I took one down!"
Now there was only one left, as I moved into firing position he did downward turn to the left and bugged out. We were safe, for now.
As we came to waypoint 8 we saw the runways of Ramat David.
"Alpha, clear to land on 2-7, no wind."
As we touched down on 2-7, we realized how lucky we had been.
"Alpha, good to have you back. How was your flight?"
"Oh, same-ol', same-ol'."
"Two; we met 'em at six."
"How many did you get?"
"One, the other bugged out."
As we parked our jets in their appropriate hangars we saw the second shift taking off. As we walked back to the briefing room, we looked up at the sun, then at our watches. It was only nine in the morning. It is funny how a flight that seems so long can take only a matter of time. And what could be even worse than that, is that we would have to do it all over again twelve hours later.
The night was crisp, and cool. The wind blew fast through my hair. It was time for our second patrol. We were to fly the opposite pattern of the one we had flown earlier that day. The aircraft chosen for us this time around was the Lavi. The Lavi was a new generation fighter with spoiler wings right behind the cockpit and a delta wind design. It was an awesome machine. The runway lights shown bright on the moonless night. This is what I was afraid of. I could just see the lights in the distance, three…four…five…five…no wait…eight. Eight bombers and three…four fighter escorts. However, I had been wrong before.
At waypoint 4 we were able to see the capital of Syria, Damascus. I had never seen the town before, at night that is. The town seemed so small from this distance, almost like it didn't exist as a large capital city, but as a speck of color on the desert floor. As I looked over my left wing, towards where my wingman should be, I not only saw my wingman but a huge threat to our security. Visible only through the glow of afterburner were three MiG-29's that had been tailing us for who knows how long now as we made our patrol. And we would've lead them straight to our base for a night attack. They were clever, but they were flying blind. They had turned off their HUD's and all other navigation lights as to not be detected by the naked eye, and my wingman and I had been dumb enough not to occasionally glance at our radars.
We were sitting ducks.
A transmission to control would not help us now; it was up to us. It was then that I remembered the flight instructor's lesson on low level flying tactics:
"Anyone who is stupid enough to fly lower than 1,000 feet without a HUD on at night is signing a death wish. Either that or he's a damn good pilot."
Those were his exact words. The thought I had was either going to get us killed, or kill those bogies. Without telling my wingman of our situation, I dropped to an altitude of 650 feet. My wingman followed. We were ten miles from our base, we only had one shot at what we had to do and my wingman was willing to do his part to help. As the lights of the runway came into sight, we dropped to 200 feet. The midges were still flying blind. As we neared the point that would make or break our mission, I took one last look at the MiGs and said to my wingman:
We both broke away from the MiGs and turned back just in time to see the giant fireball. The MiGs were flying so close to us that they were unable to see the mountains right in front of us. We had done it.
After landing safely for the second time today I was out. I hit the bunks and was out just like that.
My life was good; I was an American pilot flying for the best damn country in the world, what, departure? To where? How? I mean…yep, I was to leave for the IAF tomorrow at noon. Once I found out some info on the IAF; I was a little relieved. Hell, I was going to fly for the best damn air force ever! I was excited as hell!
My wingman didn't like the idea so much. You see, he was married and had two little girls, he didn't want to go. We sat up that night plotting a way to keep him here at home. We went in to see the general in the morning with our case, my wingman was allowed to stay, I would go alone.
A few hours later, the Blackhawk helicopter that had carried me in was now fading from my sight.
"Hello," came a voice.
I turned and said, "Hey, wusup man," to the officer that had welcomed me, upon realizing his rank I immediately saluted and stood up straight. "Sorry, sir, long trip."
"Yes, I know," he replied. I stared at him, trying to size him up.
"Come, I'll show you around."
We walked to the briefing room to meet the other pilots and my new wingman. His name was Paul, Callsign: Roberts (funny name fore an Israeli, I thought). Paul and I got along good and have been friends since then. Now we were to fly the hardest mission of our life, a surprise attack on the city of Damascus power plant.