LONDON, Nov. 22 (JTA) – Israel has maintained a decisive technological advantage in the air with the acquisition of its latest strike aircraft from the United States, according to the current issue of the London-based Jane’s Defense Weekly. The journal reports that the Israel Air Force has now taken delivery of more than half of the 25 Boeing F-15I jet fighters it ordered in 1994 and has already conducted more than 1,200 flights with the aircraft, which are now stationed at the Tel Nov base in central Israel. The multibillion-dollar order, scheduled to be completed by mid-1999, gives Israel – for the first time – an all-weather, long-range, pre-emptive strike capability, the journal reported. The acquisition also gives Israel “the most powerful long-range aircraft in the region,” it said. An Israeli defense official was quoted as saying that a decision on Israel’s next aircraft purchase is not expected until early next year.
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