Tel Aviv- Three US F-35 stealth fighter planes are on their way from the United States to Israel to join two other warplanes which landed in the country last year, The Israeli air force has announced.
The five fighter jets are part of a deal to provide Israel with 50 jets by 2021. Israel is set to receive six to seven per year, until the first batch of 33 jets is delivered.
The five F-35 (known by its Hebrew name “Adir” or “Mighty) jets will participate for the first time in the Air Force Flyover during Independence Day.
Once the jets arrive in Israel, they will not leave except for combat missions.
The defense ministry says the Jewish State depends on such planes as a “deterrent force against a possible Iranian threat.”
The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, which costs 90 million dollars each and is capable of carrying 16 tons of missiles, is known for having a long flight range.
The F-35 was designed to strike ground targets and for air-to-air combat. It can also sneak undetected behind enemy radar.
Israel receives annually 3.8 billion dollars of US military assistance.
It is the first country after the US to have in its possession the F-35 stealth fighter planes.