In an unusual move, after almost seven years of negotiations, four F-16s were transferred from Israel to a Canadian company for use by American pilots. This was the first phase of a deal in which 29 planes that were on their way to the scrap yard will be transferred to a private company.
“This is a very unusual deal in Israel,” says the company’s CEO, Col. Yossi Meir. “I do not recall in recent years that anything [sic] has done a deal of this magnitude. The planes arrived in the country in the 1980s and performed a variety of operations and missions in the [Israel] Air Force. The highlight of the planes[‘ history] is the bombing of the reactor in Iraq. One of the planes we handled participated in the first quartet of attack.”
The “hawks” that entered service from 1980 were removed from it between 2013 and 2016. In coordination with the Canadian company they were repaired, and of the 29 aircraft, 10 are destined to return to the air, and the rest will be used for other purposes.