10.07.2013 Shir Aharon Baram - iaf.org.il
In the Aerial Defense Division, soldiers have learned lessons from the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) that penetrated Israeli territory last October and April of this year: In addition to the courses on airplane identification the soldiers pass, there is also a course on UAV identification. From now on, the soldiers of the division will be able to deal with the new, developing threat
The Aerial Defense Division is currently putting forth a plan to train combat soldiers to deal with the threat of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The combat fighters and interceptors will learn how to detect UAVs of different kinds and to distinguish between them. "The threat of UAVs is a very relevant threat, along with our classic mission against manned aerial vehicles", says Commander of the Aerial Defense Division, Brigadier General Shahar Shohat, in an interview with the IAF journal.
Identification rates of airplanes are of great importance to the Aerial Defense Division, as its soldiers are required to identify an aircraft at a high altitude and determine quickly whether it is friendly or hostile. Through distinguishing the types of inlet cones, canopies, undercarriages, and non-stop memorization of blueprints and different points, the soldiers responsible for the task of defended the airspace succeed in distinguishing between a every type of plane and helicopter in the area.
In recent years, the State of Israel has realized the threat is not limited to just manned aerial vehicles, but includes also unmanned aerial vehicles, a developing threat among terror organizations that will no slip past the watchful eyes of the soldiers of the division: In their lessons, they will learn how to distinguish between offensive UAVs, UAVs for intelligence purposes, and other types of UAVs available in the field.
In the last year, the IAF has dealt with the threat of UAVs: Last April, a UAV was intercepted off the coast of Haifa by a fighter jet, and half a year before this incident, in October, a UAV from the terrorist organization, Hezbollah, was intercepted in midair over the northern Negev.