The downing of an Israel Air Force fighter jet last Saturday – whether it was a planned ambush or not after Israel attacked targets in Syria – indicates that the price Israel will pay for aerial freedom of action has risen.
The IAF will complete its inquiry into the loss of its F-16I fighter jet by Tuesday. The basic facts, as reported earlier this week, are clear: When the Israeli planes attacked an Iranian command post near Palmyra, they climbed to an altitude of around 40,000 feet. As the crew in one plane focused on tracking the missiles fired at the post, they did not try to evade Syrian anti-aircraft missiles. When their plane was hit, the crew immediately ejected. The next actions – parachuting out, locating the ejector seats, medical treatment – unfolded as required, and saved the lives of the wounded pilot and navigator.