Late 1945 marked the renewal of organised Jewish resistance to the British Mandatory government, and the British military aviation infrastructure was one of the targets chosen for attack by the Jewish underground movements. The climax of the underground activity against RAF installations in Palestine was on February 25th 1946. The underground movements – which operated jointly at the time, as the ‘Movement of Hebrew Rebellion’ – attacked three RAF airfields simultaneously: the Etzel (‘Irgun Tzvai Leumi’) attacked Kastinah (Hatzor) and Lod, and the Lehi (known by the British as ‘the Stern Gang’) attacked Kfar Sirkin. 20 planes were demolished, including Spitfires, Ansons (at Lod) and Halifaxes (at Kastina). Other planes were partially damaged.
‘The Night of the Airplanes’ meant that Palestine was no longer perceived as a safe, calm base for the RAF, and some of the planes which remained intact were evacuated post haste to airfields in Egypt.

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