Romanian Air Force chief visits Israel

Major General Carnu Fanica’s visit strengthens the partnership between the two nations

Date: 14/12/2011, 8:39 PM     Author: IAF Website

Major General Carnu Fanica, the commander of the Romanian Air Force, visited Israel this week in order to observe the Israeli Air Force.

The visit marks the latest sign of the growing partnership between the Romanian and Israeli Air Forces, including many joint training exercises.

Earlier this year, IAF planes flew to Romania for a training exercise. Also, families of the victims of last year’s IAF CH-53 helicopter crash visited Romania this year.

On Tuesday, the Romanian Air Force chief visited the IAF airbase at Tel Nof, where he unexpectedly found common ground with the soldiers.

“My father was Romanian. I have visited Romania twice to get in touch with my roots,” said Lt. Col Ami, commander of the IAF’s Experimental Aviation Unit.

Col. Oded Kalmanovitz, head of the Aircraft Maintenance Unit, also revealed his Romanian heritage. “I speak Romanian with my mother,” he said. “But she said that I don’t speak so well, so I’ll have to speak to you in English.”

Major General Fanica was impressed with the IAF personnel that he met. “You are all very professional and capably handle complex situations,” he said.

Earlier in the week, Major General Fanica visited the IAF headquarters, along with the airbase at Nevatim, where he flew in an IAF F-16.  Major General Fanica also visited the Hercules squadron which participated in a training exercise in Romania earlier this year. 

“The cooperation between our militaries and our air forces has been of the utmost importance to us,” said Major Yariv, head of Foreign Operations at IAF headquarters. “The tragedy that both of our countries experienced, losing the Romanian and Israeli team members [in the training exercise crash last year], contributed to the tight bonds that our forces share today.”

Before returning home, Major General Fanica will visit the Yad VaShem Holocaust Museum as well as Israeli defense companies.