“A nearby country with unfamiliar and challenging terrain”
According to the tradition of Hanukkah, Judeans fought the prohibitions of Antiochus the Greek, but in the new millennium cooperation between Israelis and the Greek is flourishing. View the special gallery of joint exercises between the two forces
Michal Weissbrod and Tal Michael
The tradition of Hanukkah is common knowledge: The Greek controlled the land of Israel and cast severe sanctions on its residents, but the Maccabees were able to defeat them, regain control of the Holy Temple and light the Menorah with a small jug of oil that lasted for eight days. 2000 years later, Greek-Israeli cooperation is taking off: joint exercises in the skies of both countries, simulated aerial battles and rotor by rotor flights. “Israel and Greece are in the same neighborhood, south-east of the Mediterranean Sea”, said deputy commander of the “Winds” squadron of the Hellenic Air Force, during a 2011 exercise held in Israel. “The two countries have a common interest to in providing stability to the area”.
Only recently did Israeli combat squadrons return from a far range exercise in the Greek sky. “We have excellent cooperation and a lot to learn from them”, said Chief of Air Staff of the IAF, Brigadier General Hagi Topolansky. “Greece is a nearby country with a similar order of power, foreign and challenging terrain and familiarity with NATO. I believe that the cooperation will continue and that exercises will expand in the future”.