IAF ThunderPilot
Since Nov 4, 2004

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A list of my favorite quotes:

"Massada will not fall again"
-Israel Defense Forces.

"We can forgive you for killing our sons. But we will never forgive you for making us kill yours."
-Former Israeli Prime Minister, Golda Meir, adressing the Arab nations after the Yom Kippur War of 1973.

"We will have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us."
-Golda Meir.

"The hard we do immediately. The impossible takes a bit longer."
-IAF's "Patishim" (F-15I) squadron.

"If an expert says it can't be done, get another expert."
-David Ben-Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israel.

"Courage is a special kind of knowledge: the knowledge of how to fear what ought to be feared and how not to fear what ought not to be feared."
-David Ben-Gurion.

"A million and half children were poisoned by the Zyklon gas during the Holocaust. Now Israel's children were about to be poisoned by radioactivity. For two years we have lived in the shadow of the danger awaiting Israel from nuclear reactor in Iraq. This would have been a new Holocaust. It was prevented by the heroism of our pilots to whom we owe so much."
-Former Israeli Prime Minister, Menachem Begin, about the raid on the Iraqi nuclear reactor, 1981.

"No more wars, no more bloodshed, and no more threats"
-Menachem Begin, giving an address regarding the peace treaty with Egypt, November, 1977.

"You ought to let the Jews have Jerusalem; it was they who made it famous."
-Winston Churchill to diplomat Evelyn Shuckburgh, 1955.

"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
-Winston Churchill, about the victory of the Royal Air Force in the Battle of Britain.

"Stupidity: Doing the same mistake over and over again and expecting different results."
-Albert Einstein.

"For thus said the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel: "Houses, fields, and vineyards shall again be purchased in this land... See, I will gather them from all the lands to which I have banished them... and I will bring them back to this place and let them dwell secure Fields shall be purchased, and deeds written and sealed, and witnesses called in the land of Benjamin and in the environs of Jerusalem, and in the towns of Judah; the towns of the hill country, the towns of the Shfelah, and the towns of the Negev. For I will restore their fortunes" - declares the Lord."
-(Jeremiah 32:15, 37, 44)


Israel Defense Forces

The IDF Spirit

The Israel Defense Forces are the state of Israel's military force. The IDF is subordinate to the directions of the democratic civilian authorities and the laws of the state. The goal of the IDF is to protect the existence of the State of Israel and her independence, and to thwart all enemy efforts to disrupt the normal way of life in Israel. IDF soldiers are obligated to fight, to dedicate all their strength and even sacrifice their lives in order to protect the State of Israel, her citizens and residents. IDF soldiers will operate according to the IDF values and orders, while adhering to the laws of the state and norms of human dignity, and honoring the values of the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.

Spirit of the IDF-Definition and Origins

The Spirit of the IDF is the identity card of the IDF values, which should stand as the foundation of all of the activities of every IDF soldier, on regular or reserve duty. The Spirit of the IDF and the guidelines of operation resulting from it are the ethical code of the IDF. The Spirit of the IDF will be applied by the IDF, its soldiers, its officers, its units and corps to shape their mode of action. They will behave, educate and evaluate themselves and others according to the Spirit of the IDF.

The Spirit of the IDF draws on four sources:
-The tradition of the IDF and its military heritage as the Israel Defense Forces.
-The tradition of the State of Israel, its democratic principles, laws and institutions.
-The tradition of the Jewish People throughout their history.
-Universal moral values based on the value and dignity of human life.

Basic Values:

Defense of the State, its Citizens and its Residents - The IDF's goal is to defend the existence of the State of Israel, its independence and the security of the citizens and residents of the state.

Love of the Homeland and Loyalty to the Country - At the core of service in the IDF stand the love of the homeland and the commitment and devotion to the State of Israel- a democratic state that serves as a national home for the Jewish People- its citizens and residents.

Human Dignity - The IDF and its soldiers are obligated to protect human dignity. Every human being is of value regardless of his or her origin, religion, nationality, gender, status or position.

The Values:

Tenacity of Purpose in Performing Missions and Drive to Victory - The IDF servicemen and women will fight and conduct themselves with courage in the face of all dangers and obstacles; They will persevere in their missions resolutely and thoughtfully even to the point of endangering their lives.

Responsibility - The IDF serviceman or woman will see themselves as active participants in the defense of the state, its citizens and residents. They will carry out their duties at all times with initiative, involvement and diligence with common sense and within the framework of their authority, while prepared to bear responsibility for their conduct.

Credibility - The IDF servicemen and women shall present things objectively, completely and precisely, in planning, performing and reporting. They will act in such a manner that their peers and commanders can rely upon them in performing their tasks.

Personal Example - The IDF servicemen and women will comport themselves as required of them, and will demand of themselves as they demand of others, out of recognition of their ability and responsibility within the military and without to serve as a deserving role model.

Human Life - The IDF servicemen and women will act in a judicious and safe manner in all they do, out of recognition of the supreme value of human life. During combat they will endanger themselves and their comrades only to the extent required to carry out their mission.

Purity of Arms - The IDF servicemen and women will use their weapons and force only for the purpose of their mission, only to the necessary extent and will maintain their humanity even during combat. IDF soldiers will not use their weapons and force to harm human beings who are not combatants or prisoners of war, and will do all in their power to avoid causing harm to their lives, bodies, dignity and property.

Professionalism - The IDF servicemen and women will acquire the professional knowledge and skills required to perform their tasks, and will implement them while striving continuously to perfect their personal and collective achievements.

Discipline - The IDF servicemen and women will strive to the best of their ability to fully and successfully complete all that is required of them according to orders and their spirit. IDF soldiers will be meticulous in giving only lawful orders, and shall refrain from obeying blatantly illegal orders.

Comradeship - The IDF servicemen and women will act out of fraternity and devotion to their comrades, and will always go to their assistance when they need their help or depend on them, despite any danger or difficulty, even to the point of risking their lives.

Sense of Mission - The IDF soldiers view their service in the IDF as a mission; They will be ready to give their all in order to defend the state, its citizens and residents. This is due to the fact that they are representatives of the IDF who act on the basis and in the framework of the authority given to them in accordance with IDF orders.

"Stop the unjust and colonialist Zionist occupation of Muslim land!"
-Arab and Muslim Land is in Green.
-Israel is in Red.
Who is occupying what and who is a threat to whom? ___________________________________________________________________________________

Photo of the promised land, Zion- the land of Israel, as taken by Space Shuttle Columbia STS-109

Zionism- What Exactly Is It?

The origin of the word "Zionism" is the biblical word "Zion," often used as a synonym for Jerusalem and the Land of Israel (Eretz Yisrael). Zionism is an ideology which expresses the yearning of the Jewish poeple for their historical homeland - Zion, the Land of Israel.

The hope of returning to their homeland was first held by Jews exiled to Babylon some 2,500 years ago - a hope which subsequently became a reality. ("By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept when we remembered Zion." Psalms 137:1). Thus political Zionism, which coalesced in the 19th century, invented neither the concept nor the practice of return. Rather, it appropriated an ancient idea and an ongoing active movement, and adapted them to meet the needs and spirit of the times.

The core of the Zionist idea appears in the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel (14 May 1948), which states, inter alia, that:

"The Land of Israel was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and political identity was shaped. Here they first attained to statehood, created cultural values of national and universal significance and gave to the world the eternal Book of Books.

After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people kept faith with it throughout their dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom."

The Foundations of Zionism

The idea of Zionism is based on the long connection between the Jewish people and its land, a link which began almost 4,000 years ago when Abraham settled in Canaan, later known as the Land of Israel.

Central to Zionist thought is the concept of the Land of Israel as the historical birthplace of the Jewish people and the belief that Jewish life elsewhere is a life of exile. Moses Hess, in his book Rome and Jerusalem (1844), expresses this idea:

"Two periods of time shaped the development of Jewish civilization: the first, after the liberation from Egypt, and the second, the return from Babylon. The third shall come with the redemption from the third exile."

Over centuries in the Diaspora, the Jews maintained a strong and unique relationship with their historical homeland, and manifested their yearning for Zion through rituals and literature.

While Zionism expresses the historical link binding the Jewish people to the Land of Israel, modern Zionism might not have arisen as an active national movement in the 19th century without contemporary antisemitism preceded by of centuries of persecution.

Over the centuries, Jews were expelled from almost every European country - Germany and France, Portugal and Spain, England and Wales - a cumulative experience which had a profound impact, especially in the 19th century when Jews had abandoned hope of fundamental change in their lives. Out of this milieu came Jewish leaders who turned to Zionism as a result of the virulent antisemitism in the societies surrounding them. Thus Moses Hess, shaken by the blood libel of Damascus (1844), became the father of Zionist socialism; Leon Pinsker, shocked by the pogroms (1881-1882) which followed the assassination of Czar Alexander II, assumed leadership in the Hibbat Zion movement; and Theodor Herzl, who as a journalist in Paris experienced the venomous antisemitic campaign of the Dreyfus case (1896), organized Zionism into a political movement.

The Zionist movement aimed to solve the "Jewish problem," the problem of a perennial minority, a people subjected to repeated pogroms and persecution, a homeless community whose alienness was underscored by discrimination wherever Jews settled. Zionism aspired to deal with this situation by effecting a return to the historical homeland of the Jews - the Land of Israel.

The history of aliya, much of which was in direct response to acts of murder and discrimination against Jews, provides strong proof for the Zionist argument that a Jewish state in the Land of Israel, with a Jewish majority, is the only solution to the "Jewish problem."

Zionism Today

The establishment of the State of Israel marked the realization of the Zionist goal of attaining an internationally recognized, legally secured home for the Jewish people in its historic homeland, where Jews would be free from persecution and able to develop their own lives and identity.

Since 1948, Zionism has seen its task as continuing to encourage the "ingathering of the exiles," which at times has called for extraordinary efforts to rescue endangered (physically and spiritually) Jewish communities. It also strives to preserve the unity and continuity of the Jewish people as well as to focus on the centrality of Israel in Jewish life everywhere.

Down through the centuries, the desire for the restoration of the Jewish people in the Land of Israel has been a thread binding the Jewish people together. Jews everywhere accept Zionism as a fundamental tenet of Judaism, support the State of Israel as the basic realization of Zionism and are enriched culturally, socially and spiritually by the fact of Israel - a member of the family of nations and a vibrant, creative accomplishment of the Jewish spirit.

The Western Wall is part of a supporting wall Herod built around the Temple in 20 BC. Being the only authentic relic from the Temple, the wall is the holiest place for the Jewish people.

Text of The Jerusalem Covenan, circulating for the world to sign:

AS OF THIS DAY, Jerusalem day, the twenty-eighth day of the month of Iyar in the year five thousand seven hundred fifty-two; one thousand nine hundred and twenty-two years after the destruction of the Second Temple; forty-four years since the founding of the State of Israel; twenty-five years since the Six Day War during which the Israel Defense Forces, in defense of our very existence, broke through the walls of the city and restored the Temple Mount and the unity of Jerusalem; twelve years since the Knesset of Israel reestablished that Jerusalem, "unified and whole, is the Capital of Israel"; "the State of Israel is the State of the Jewish People" and the Capital of Israel is the Capital of the People of Israel.

We have gathered together in Zion, national leaders and heads of our communities everywhere, to enter into a covenant with Jerusalem, as was done by the leaders of our nation and all the people of Israel upon Israel's return to its Land from the Babylonian exile; and the people and their leaders vowed to "dwell in Jerusalem, the Holy City".

ONCE AGAIN, "our feet stand within your gates, O Jerusalem - Jerusalem built as a city joined together" which "unites the people of Israel to one another", and "links heavenly Jerusalem with earthly Jerusalem."

WE HAVE RETURNED to the place that the Lord vowed to bestow upon the descendants of Abraham, Father of our Nation; to the City of David, King of Israel; where Solomon, son of David, built a Holy Temple; a Capital City which became the Mother of all Israel; a metropolis for justice and righteousness and for the wisdom and insights of the ancient world; where a Second Temple was erected in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah.

In this city the prophets of the Lord prophesied; in this city the Sages taught Torah; in this City the Sanhedrin convened in session in its stone chamber. "For there were the seats of Justice, the Throne of the House of David", "for out Zion shall go forth Torah, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem."

TODAY AS OF OLD, we hold fast to the truth of the words of the Prophets of Israel, that all the inhabitants of the world shall enter within the gates of Jerusalem; "And it shall come to pass at the end of days, the mountain of the House of the Lord will be well established at the peak of the mountains and will tower above the hills, and all the nations shall stream towards it.

Each and every nation will live in it by its own faith: "For all the nations will go forward, each with its own Divine Name; we shall go in the name of the Lord our God forever and ever, "And in this spirit the Knesset of the State of Israel has enacted a law: the places holy to the peoples of all religions shall be protected from any desecration and from any restriction of free access to them.

JERUSALEM - peace and tranquillity shall reign in the city: "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; may those who love you be tranquil. May there be peace within your walls, and tranquillity within your palaces." Out of Jerusalem, a message of peace went forth and shall yet go forth again to all the inhabitants of the earth: "And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; nation will not lift up sword against nation, nor shall they learn war any more." Our sages, peace be upon them, said: in the future, The Holy One, the Blessed, will comfort Jerusalem only with peace.

FROM THIS PLACE, we once again take this vow: "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, may my right hand lose its strength; may my tongue cleave to my palate if I do not remember you, if I do not raise up Jerusalem at the very height of my rejoicing."

And with all these understanding, we enter into this Covenant and write: "We shall bind you to us forever; we shall bind you to us with faithfulness, with righteousness and justice, with steadfast love and compassion. We love you, O Jerusalem, with eternal love, with unbounded love, under siege and when liberated from the yoke of oppressors. We have been martyred for you; we have yearned for you, we have clung to you. Our faithfulness to you we shall bequeath to our children after us. Forevermore, our home shall be within you.

In certification of this covenant, we sign: ...

The Tower of King David in the Old City of Jerusalem

Psalm 137:1-6

By the rivers of Babylon we sat down and wept
When we remembered Zion.
There on the willows we hung our harps.
Our captors asked us for songs,
Our tormentors demanded songs of joy;
They said “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”
But how can we sing the songs of the Lord
While in a foreign land?
If I forget you Jerusalem,
May my right hand lose its cunning.
May my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth
If I do not remember you,
If I do not consider Jerusalem my highest joy.

June 7, 1967, The 3rd day of the Six Day War: IDF Paratroopers release the Western Wall and the old city of Jerusalem.


Tourism In Israel - Interesting Facts

Israel, perfectly located at the fulcrum of Europe, Asia and Africa, is a world-class destination for sophisticated travelers. Israel offers cultural attractions on a par with Europe, the U.S. and Canada, luxury hotels, glamorous spas and a hot restaurant scene - all within an atmosphere that combines the very ancient with the ultra high-tech, and the exotic with the contemporary.

Jewish Interest - The promised land is the eternal home of the Jewish people. The rebirth of an independent Israel in 1948 has transformed the lives and circumstances of Jews in Israel, and worldwide. For 2000 years Jews yearned to visit Jerusalem. Now it’s just hours away.

Christian Interest - Two thousand years ago, Jesus of Nazareth was born. For Christians, visiting the land of Jesus’ life and ministry can be one of the most extraordinary and unique experiences.

Did you know that...

1. Israel has more museums per capita than any country on earth Including the legendary Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

2. In addition to world-class Israeli hotels and hotel-chains, almost every international hotel chain is represented in Israel.

3. Two Israel hotels/restaurants are members of the prestigious Relais and Chateaux organization.

4. France's legendary Gault-Millau food critics consider Israel one of the world's major food destinations, one of the only countries outside France on which it publishes a restaurant guide.

5. Israel has a network of international-standard spa resorts in the Galilee, at the Dead Sea and at Eilat.

6. Israel - a country no bigger than New Jersey or Prince Edward Island - has an international standard Opera Company (The New Israeli Opera), four full-time symphony orchestras (including the Israel Philharmonic, founded in 1936), as well as dozens of theater, dance, chamber music and contemporary music companies

7. The International Opera Festival in the Roman Theater at Caesarea is now an annual event held every June and July, and includes world-class performances by the New Israeli Opera. Visiting superstars at recent festivals have included Jessye Norman and Kiri Ti Kanawa.

8. Israel's club scene - particularly in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem - is part of the Ibiza-Amsterdam-London scene, drawing DJ's and club fans from North America and Europe to all-night parties.

9. Tel Aviv's November 2000 Love Parade brought a quarter-of-a-million people to the city's Mediterranean shore in an hours-long celebration of techno music, trance and amity. As many as 400,000 revelers participated in the 2001 Love Parade.

10. 2000 was the best year ever for tourism to Israel, bringing almost 3 million tourists to the country from almost every country on earth.

Jerusalem - Situated high in the Judean Hills, Jerusalem, the Capital of Israel, is one of the most extraordinary cities in the world, presenting a unique combination of ancient history, spiritual sanctity and colorful cultures. Established 3200 years ago by King David, Jerusalem is a fascinating city of many contrasts and diversities. It is a city where old and new, holy and secular, pure nature and beautiful architecture mix into magical harmony of smells, sounds and sights. Sacred to the world's three main religions, Jerusalem is a captivating city, whose visitors are left touched and inspired by the shining glow of its religious shrines, picturesque scenery and magnificent golden limestone. It is also the Capital of Israel, home to the Israeli parliament (Knesset), the President's Residence and the government offices. A visit to Jerusalem, known as the "City of Gold", is indeed an unforgettable experience.

The Knesset and the Menora in Jerusalem

Jerusalem, the capital of Israel, yesterday, today, tomorrow and forever!

Yemin Moshe, Jerusalem

The Knesset and the High Court of Justice

Israel Museum - Shrine of the Book: The Shrine of the Book is the home of the exceptional archaeological finds: the Dead Sea Scrolls and other rare ancient manuscripts. The dome covers a structure which is two-thirds below the ground, and is reflected in a pool of water that surrounds it.

Tel-Aviv - Stretched along the beautiful beach strip of the Mediterranean, Tel-Aviv is Israel's largest city and biggest commercial center. It is a busy metropolis, which inspires its visitors with a unique energetic atmosphere of excitement and fun. Visible from a distance with its seafront skyscrapers and exclusive hotels, Tel-Aviv presents a lively combination of entertainment venues, shopping malls, exotic markets, nonstop active nightlife, gorgeous golden beaches and wonderful restaurants of all kinds. It is also the country's greatest cultural center, a home for a variety of museums, galleries, theatres and concert halls.

Tel-Aviv's beach

Tel-Aviv's beach

The business district of Tel-Aviv and Ramat-Gan

Haifa - Israel's third largest city and northern capital is the heart of it all. Situated in a broad natural bay between the beautiful Mediterranean Sea and the awe - inspiring Carmel mountain, the city's terraced landscape offers a rich variety of breathtaking panoramas, giving the observer the sensation of being on a heavenly peninsula.

The Bahai Shrine in Haifa

Roman Amphitheatre, Caesarea

Netanya - Capital of the "Sharon" district, is located close to the seashores of the Mediteranean Sea. Natanya's proximity to the sea (14 kilometers of the most beautiful shores in the world) and its pleasant climate have made the city a most desirable tourist attraction and resort area. Netanya, the largest city on the crossroads between Tel-Aviv and Haifa forms a connecting link between the northern and central parts of the country.

Eilat - Located at the southernmost tip of the country, Eilat is blessed with everything that makes a perfect vacation - beautiful mirror-like sea, lively beaches, seafront bars and restaurants, first-rate hotels, all kinds of watersports, spectacular underwater world and coral reefs, diving clubs, desert treks, camel tours and even swimming with dolphins. Breathtaking scenery of the magnificent Red Mountains and the crystal-clear Red Sea gloriously lap this exciting fun. Eilat provides its visitors with the ultimate relaxation, given greatly by the magical beauty of the desert-like nature. All this, along with the endless sun and the pleasant, warm winter, makes Eilat the leading tourist city in Israel, preferred both by foreign visitors (European charters mostly) and Israeli vacationers.

Eilat at night

Eilat's coral reef

Dolphins Reef

Sailing at Eilat's beach

Eilat's beach

The Dead Sea - Lowest point on earth, site of the world’s only all-natural sun-bloc, where the fairest skins tan but don’t burn. The curative waters enable you to read a book while you’re floating.

A formation of salt in the Dead Sea



The Galilee - The variety and contrasts of Israel’s landscape are richly manifested in the glorious Galilee region. The Galilee is a destination for all reasons in all seasons.


Jezrael Valley

The Sea of Galilee (Kinneret Sea)

A look at the Mount Hermon, which is the highest elevation in Israel, covered with snow

Mount Hermon

The Golan in spring

One of Golan's waterfalls

The Jordan River

Metulla, Upper Galilee

One of Upper Galilee's rivers

The Negev - Whether hiking, rappelling or climbing - whether in a caravan of camels, mules or jeeps - the Negev - the call of the wilderness is a call to discover a myriad of wonders.

Camels on the Ancient Spice Route

Ramon Crater - A jeep tour

Ramon Crater - The "Nagaria"

Mitzpe Ramon Visitors' Center above the Ramon Crater

Ein Avdat National Park


Israeli Air Force

Israeli Air Force - Absolute Air Superiority

"The Good To Flight" 30.4.1962, Israel's 14th Independence Day is dedicated to the Israeli Air Force

"The Youth To Flight! The Air Force To Israel, Ministry Of Defence, Branch Of Recruitment"


"The Aviation Week: Bring Pilots And Planes To The People! -The General Council To The Hebrew Aviation In Israel"


"Weapon to Israel!"


Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) - Lavi

C'est Lavi!

Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) - Kfir


IAF F-15I before take off




IAF F-15I at base

IAF F-15I soaring into the sky

First IAF F-16I arriving to Ramon Air-Base

An F-4 and a brand new F-16I

F-16I's first flight

First flight of the F-16I

The F-16I is coming!

IAF F-15 over Temple Mount, Jerusalem.

IAF F-15 over the Judah desert

IAF F-15

IAF F-15s

F-15 over the Galilee

F-15 at base. Notice the shoot-downs marks on the noses of the jets

Two F-16 and one F-15 in a rare shot over the Galilee

IAF F-16 over the ancient Massada fortress near the Dead Sea

F-16 over the Golan Heights. In the middle of the shot the Kinneret Sea can be seen

F-16 over the Upper Galilee. In the middle of the shot the Golan Heights can be seen

Two IAF F-16 flying in formation over the Negev in southern Israel and in the background you can see the Dead Sea

IAF F-4 Phantom

IAF F-4 Phantom

Two IAF Skyhawks flying in formation over the Dead Sea

Skyhawks flying over the Upper Galilee

IAF Mirage with 10 shoot-downs marks on its nose. The Mirage jets were the IAF's main combat planes at the Six Day War, the War of Attrition and at the Yom Kippur War they were second only to the F-4 Phantoms and as such, the Mirages are holding the record as the most "combat experienced" jets of the IAF

IAF Mirage

IAF Apaches


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