Israel cannot accept a situation in which it is involved in an all-out war of attrition. It would put a big burden on the Israeli air force.
So to put simply, how can it hit the enemy hard and quickly enough to stop the launch of rockets, missiles or even attacks by fighter aircraft?
Such a strategy requires mobilising all of the air force’s assets almost simultaneously and stretching their capabilities to their limits.
This was precisely the point of an extensive training exercise the air force’s combat squadrons undertook recently.
It involved each aircrew member flying five sorties, intensive arming of the different fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters around the clock and attacks on hundreds of targets.
During the exercise, the air force squadrons from the north and south of the country also simulated intense “dogfights”.
“This is the first air force-wide exercise which simulates [an] intensive and extended attacking exercise for all airbases,” Major Daniel, the exercise manager from the Negev squadron, told the Israeli air force web site.
In the past year, the air force has focused on building a capability to attack multiple targets rapidly and has formed a special team to achieve that very goal.
The team, led by the Negev squadron, and including other squadrons, the technical division and the air force headquarters, has built an “operational mode” with the aim of attaining peak performance.
In the exercise, the different squadrons simulated rapid attacks on many targets and practised controlling aircraft during battle.
The details of the scenarios that have been used to train the squadrons in this “hit fast and hard” strategy are classified, but it can be understood that it involved using different types of weapons systems on the same target to simply destroy it without a recovery option for the duration of the war.