Israeli Air Force Commander Amir Eshel will soon retire. Before leaving, he told Channel 2 News about the IAF’s capabilities and challenges.

Eshel, archive

Eshel, archive Photo credit: Channel 2 News

In a short time, Israeli Air Force Commander Amir Eshel will head on to a new life. In a special interview with Channel 2 News, he explains about the IAF’s abilities, the threats and the means to deal with them: “We have an unparalleled defense system.”

On the wall of the Hatzerim airbase commander’s office hangs a large map that includes India. “These are just parts of our areas of activity,” Eshel explains. “The IAF operates in five arenas at all times. Happily, most of these remain unknown.”

'Only second to US'

‘Only second to US’ Photo credit: Reuters/ Channel 2 News

“We trained ourselves to reach the places we want to reach,” he said. “We are no longer a hammer but a scalpel that removes the threat and continues.”

Lebanon, archive

Lebanon, archive Photo credit: Reuters/ Channel 2 News

The departing Major General explained that the IAF’s abilities are only second to the US: “We have the ability to attack thousands of relevant and difficult targets in a day. No other air force in the world can attack with a ton of explosives at a distance of 100 meters from its ground troops without hurting them.”

“The next war in Lebanon will look completely different,” he warned. “All of Lebanon will feel the IAF simultaneously- in the north, in the south and in Beirut. We intend to attack the terrorist infrastructures very hard from the start. One jet can attack 20 different targets with the click of a button.”