Warplanes: At Least Try And Pretend You Are Behaving


October 21, 2012: The Israeli Air Force (IAF) grounded all its fighter squadrons, for about 24 hours, on October 14th. This was brought on by two F-16s nearly colliding several days earlier. Air force commanders noted that there had been a number of near misses and non-fatal accidents in the past two years and one fatal helicopter accident in Rumania in 2010. So something had to be done, again. The one day grounding allowed all commanders to go over safety procedures with their subordinates (especially the pilots).

The IAF is a very aggressive outfit and always had problems with pilots who took dangerous risks during training. Last year the fighter squadrons were grounded for two days in order to once again review safety procedures. Senior commanders have been unable to reduce the aggressive behavior and many (unofficially) don’t want to. As the British commandos (the SAS) put it, “who dares, wins.” But in peacetime that sort of thing can produce accidents during training and that is politically unacceptable. But in wartime that aggressive attitude can be the key to victory.




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