IAF Appoints First Female Squadron Commander

Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates. Proverbs 31: 30-31 (The Israel Bible™)

Israeli Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin appointed the first female commander of an IAF squadron Tuesday, when he named Major G. to command Squadron 122.

The pilot, whose name cannot be published for security reasons, will command the Nachshon Squadron (named after a descendant of Judah and Aaron’s brother-in-law), which operates surveillance aircraft.

G. (34), who will be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, enlisted in the IAF in 2003, and upon completion of her flight course, served in various squadrons as a transport pilot. She later served in several commander positions in the IAF Flight School and later in Squadron 135. Between 2015 and 2017, she served as Deputy Commander of the Nahshon Squadron, which she will now return to command.

“I am happy for the appointment. It is a great privilege along with great responsibility,” said G, adding “The real work is yet to come. I’m  proud to serve in the Air Force.”

Her appointment comes after the military named the first ever woman to head an IAF aviation squadron in January. Unlike flight squadrons, which operate aircraft, aviation squadrons are responsible for ground-based operations. Major G’s appointment also follows other promotions to command positions for women in the IDF, including the recent announcement that the IDF had appointed its first four female tank commanders.

While women flew fighter planes in the 1948 Independence War and 1956 Sinai War, they were eventually barred from the program (as well as from other combat positions in the Israel Defense Forces).

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