The IAF and the Israeli Navy work side by side during peaceful times as well as in emergencies. In the past few years, the cooperation has tightened and has naturally improved operations in the field
Talya Yariv & Shachar Zorani | Translation: Ofri Aharon
In the space between the sea and the sky, two soldiers with many differences in their service, ultimately share one thing – their commitment to the protection of their country. The Air Force and the Navy work side by side in peaceful times as well as in times of emergency and together set out to operate successful exercises and operations. “Our cooperation is extremely important because we share the same mission, but differentiate as far as execution goes. We are in the air and they are in the sea, it is a different language and a different pace”, shares Captain Noga, from the IAF Cooperation Unit, that is responsible for the cooperation between the Air Force and naval and ground forces. “Each of us brings our abilities, and the task can only be completed when we work together. If either one of us operates alone, we only complete half of the task. When we work together our power and abilities double”, added Captain A’, from the IAF cooperation Unit.
The arenas in which the soldiers work have differences as well as similarities. On land – fences surround the borders of the country, in the air and sea there are no borders, thus it is easier to access areas outside of Israel. “The arena in which the Navy works is evolving and dynamic”, said Captain Noga.
Strengthening the Connection
The cooperation between the forces is strengthening. The connection between the Navy and the Heavy Transport Squadrons has been tightening; a process which can be seen in the recent increase in the amount of mutual training exercises. “The C-130 and the C-130J can transport special naval forces to far away destinations, airdrop them with their boats into the sea, which brings them closer to farther battlefields and thus they can report back to all the troops that are on their way”, said Captain A.
The two forces are always searching for new and improved tools and developments that may assist in the completion of the mutual operations. The “Defenders of the West” Squadron, which currently flies the naval reconnaissance “Panther” helicopter, is likely to receive a major reinforcement in the next few years, as the IAF is currently examining the possibility of acquiring a new naval reconnaissance helicopter which will improve the joint effort. Both forces are currently conducting tests, with the goal of achieving better operational cooperation and strengthening the joint efforts.
Every Operation, Every Range and Every Threat
The IAF has always taken part in Naval operations. “The Israel Air Force is there from beginning to end, from reconnaissance through data broadcasting, marine helicopters and rescue missions. Every operation demands individual planning, which mostly comes from the air – from combat operations to distant classified operations. We are available for missions that demand 24/7 alertness, we work beside the naval arena and we give answers when they are demanded from us” explained Captain A.