Warfare Operation Moked: Destruction of Arab Air Forces By Tom Cooper, with Nigel Baker

Dr.Yahia Al Shaer

Mi Sergeant
MI.Net Member
Sep 14, 2020
Operation Moked: Destruction of Arab Air Forces
By Tom Cooper, with Nigel Baker
Sep 24, 2003, 19:59

The following data is compiled on the basis of very different sources, mainly books and articles published by Elizier Cohen, Salvador M. Huertas, Shlomo Aloni, and Dr. David Nicolle. To a specific degree, the data here differs from those given by other Israeli authors, foremost Amos Dor.

While we believe to be offering here not only a detailed, but also a precise account, as always, the ACIG.org team would therefore be greatefull for any additional materials, suggestions, remarks, and corrections to this topic - especially those regarding less-well known details about IDF/AF units, aircraft, and pilots, and their activities on 5 June 1967.

Order of Battle of the Israeli Defence Force/Air Force, on 5 June 1967

1 Kanaf/1 Wing, Ramat David

- 107th Lion Head Sqn, Ouragan, 20 aircraft
- 109th Valley Sqn, Mystére IVA, 16 or 20 aircraft
- 110th Knights of the North Sqn, Vautour IIN/IIBR, 18 aircraft
- 117th First Jets Sqn, Mirage IIICJ, 24 aircraft (including two Mirage IIIBJ)

? Kanaf/? Wing, Tel Nov
- 12th FS, Magister, 76 aircraft
- 103rd Sqn, Noratlas, 24 transports
- 113th Wasp Sqn, Ouragans, 20 aircraft
- 116th Flying Wing Sqn, Mystére IVA, 17 or 20 aircraft
- 119th Bat Sqn, Mirage IIICJ, 21 aircraft (including two Mirage IIIRJ)
- 124th Sqn, S-58, H-34G-III, 26 helicopter

4th Kanaf/4th Wing, Hatzor
- 100th Sqn, Piper L-18,
- 101st First Sqn, Mirage IIICJ, 22 aircraft (including one Mirage IIIBJ)
- 105th Scorpion Sqn, SMB.2, 35 aircraft (including several French-owned airframes) of which 24 were serviceable
- 123rd Sqn, Bell 47, Super Frelon, 30 helicopters
- 131st Sqn, C-47, C-95, 15 transports

Note: for operational purposes, eight Mystére IVAs of the 109th Squadron were on 5 June deployed at Tel Nov AB, to operate alongside the 116th Sqn; four Vautours (including three As and one IIN) of 110th Sqn that were to fly the mission against Beni Swayf were also deployed to Tel Nov; while four Ouragans of 107th Squadron operated from Lod IAP (subsequent Ben Gurion IAP).

Totals as of 0715hrs of 5 June 1967:
- 67 Mirage IIICJ/BJ/CJ(R)
- 1 MiG-21F-13 (ex Iraqi)
- 35 Super Mystère B.2
- 19 Vautour IIA/N/BR(18 serviceable)
- 35 Mystère IVA (33 serviceable)
- 51 Ouragan (48 serviceable)
- some 15 Meteor F.Mk.8, FR.Mk.9, and T.Mk.7/8

Totals of available fighter-bombers:
- 204 "in being"
- 197 "combat-ready"
- 183 "fully manned"

The IDF/AF of 1967 was almost entirely French-equipped air force - as seen from this formation, consisting of (from left to right): a Mirage IIICJ, Mystére IVA, Vautour, Super Mystére B.2, and Ouragan. These five types bore the brunt of offensive counter-air operations that broke the back of three Arab air forces during the Six Day War, in 1June 1967. (Photo: Tom N.)

I Wave
ToT 07:45

AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 117 Sqn, #1 A. Shmueli: (destroyed two MiG-21s of the 45 Sqn and several Il-28s)

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1. O. Sagee, (runway hit by 500kg bombs, two or three Tu-16s destroyed)

AB.233 Fa’id (Fayid), Egypt
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 A. Ben-Nun (44), #? A. Goldstein (10): (destroyed 14 MiG-21s on the ground) #3 aborted; two MiG-21s (one by Ben-Nun and one by Goldstein) that came out of Kibrit AB, and an Il-14 claimed shot down in air combats and over Sinai, respectively

Mystére IVA "44" was already a "seasoned veteran" during the Six Day War, having an Egyptian MiG-kill from the Suez Crisis, in 1956. During the first wave of the Operation Moked it was flown by Capt. Assaf Ben-Nun, who also claimed a MiG-17 as shot down shortly after take-off from Kibrit AB.

Mystére IVA "10" was flown by Capt. Ami Goldstein during the first wave: Goldstein claimed a MiG-17 shot down just after a take-off from Kibrit AB, but Egyptian pilot who should have flown that MiG denies being shot down, and the pictorial evidence seems to confirm him. Mystére IVA "10" should have had one kill marking from the Suez Crisis, in 1956 (better known as "Operation Kadesh" within the IDF/AF), and this engagement might have nevertheless prompted the crews of the No. 109 Squadron to add an additional marking.

AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 Armon, #2 Y. Nevo, #3 Z. Umschweif, #4 D. Manor): (destroyed seven MiG-17, claimed two MiG-17s and two Il-14s shot down, but only one MiG-17 was damaged), around 08:53 intercepted by two MiG-21FL from Abu Sueir, lead by Maj. Hamdi: Capt. Armon shot down, KIA (by Hamdi’s wingman), Lt. Manor shot down (by Hamdi), KIA on the ground

AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, #1 R. Ronen, (hit the runway and several fighters on the ground)

AB.259 al-Arish, Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, #1 Y. Terner, (7 MiG-17, 1 Il-14 oon the ground), Lt. Col. Livnat shot down, KIA

AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979), Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, #1 R. Allon, #2 D. Jariv, #3 Navon: (RPB-bombs on the runway, 2 MiG-21 on the ground, four other MiGs and one Mi-8 destroyed); one MiG-21 shot down by Capt. Jariv, the other MiG damaged, then Jariv shot down by MiG-21; Capt. Navon (or Lavon) shot down by AAA, ejected and PoW; Allon’s aircraft damaged and crash-landed back in base

AB.248 Jabel Libni, Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, (heavy damage on the runway, many MiG-15s destroyed)

AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah, Egypt
- 3 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 D. Sever, #2 I. Peer, #3 G. Palter: (runway hit by 500kg, then CAP) #1 Sever chased a MiG-21 that fell into spin and crashed; kill awarded to Sever

ECM mission
- 2 Vautour IIN 110 Sqn, #1 U. Margalit/Y. Tsiddon, #2 A. Tsivoni/M. Eini: ECM mission with Yablet along two routes, one over northern Sinai and Nile Delta, other over central Sinai and Canal zone.

As the most potent fighter-bombers in Israeli service, Mirage IIICJs bore the brunt of the Operation Moked's Wave I: the three units flying them, the 101st, 117th, and 119th Squadrons, have got the task of attacking some of the most dangerous targets in the Nile Delta and in Sinai. At the time of the Six Day War the Mirage IIICJ "52" was flown by the 101st Squadron, and is known to have participated in attacks against different Arab airfields, as well as scored at least one air-to-air kill.

Mirage IIICJ 779 was flown by the 119 Squadron during the Six Day War: note two different kill markings applied on the nose, one for an Egyptian, and another for a Jordanian fighter shot down in air-to-air combats.

ToT 07:46
AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah, Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, (dropped RPB-bombs on the runway, 8 MiGs, 1 Mi-4, 1 Mi-6, 1 Il-14 on the ground)

AB.259 al-Arish, Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, (destroyed 1 MiG-17, 1 Il-14 on the ground)

ToT 07:50
AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 A. Lapidot, #2 B. Romach, #3 Friedman (hit runway with 500kg bombs, claimed 8 Tu-16, 1 Il-28, 3 MiG-21 destroyed)

ToT 07:52
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn (hit the runway)

AB.233 Fa’id (Fayid), Egypt
- 4 Ouragans 113 Sqn, results unclear, Lt. Pinto shot down by AAA, KIA

AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt
- 3 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1Shapira: (bombed runways with 250kg bombs, destroyed 2 MiG-17, 1 Mi-6)

AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah, Egypt
- ? Mystére IVA 109 Sqn, (4 MiG-17, 1 Mi-4, 1 Il-14)

AB.259 al-Arish, Egypt
- 4 CM.170 Magister, 12 FS, #1 A. Livnat, radar near the airfield claimed destroyed; #1 Livnat shot down by AAA near Rafah and KIA

AB.248 el-Sir/Jabel Libni, Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, (destroyed the last MiG-15s of the 24 Sqn).

ToT 07:55
AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979), Egypt
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn, #1 Salnet: (the last 3 MiGs destroyed on the ground, for a total of 20 MiG-21s and 1 MiG-15UTI), Maj. Salnet shot down, recovered

AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 Y. Shavit: (destroyed 7 MiGs on the ground - for a total of between 12 and 19 on that airfield so far), Capt. Engel shot down by AAA, KIA; Maj. Shavit’s plane badly damaged

AB.212 Bani Suwayf, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 Zur/Talmor (IIN), #2 A. Vilan, #3 M. Gill, #4 D. Ilan: (attacked with 70kg RPB bombs; 7 Tu-16s destroyed), #1 straffed a SA-2 battery nearby.

ToT 08:00
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn: (at least one Il-28 on the ground)

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, #1 O. Sagee: (several Tu-16s destroyed)

AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn: (8 RPBs on the highway, saw one MiG-21 crashing into the sea)

ToT 08:07
AB.212 Bani Suwayf, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn (one aborted), #1 Maj. Moshe Sa’ar/Capt. Alexander Inbar (IIN “62”), #2 Lt. H. Budinger (IIA “09”), #3 Rafaeli, #4 G. Goren: (attacked airfield with 70kg RPB, claimed 9 Tu-16s as destroyed on the ground), #2 developed hydraulics problem and #4 aborted

AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979), Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn: results unknown.

Vautour IIA "09" (or "109") was nick-named "Ha'mashkhit" - or "Destroyer", and flew 22 operational sorties during the Six Day War, when it was used to destroy three Egyptian Tu-16 bombers on the ground. The aircraft remains preserved in the IDF/AF Museum until today. Note that - like many other Israeli Vautours at the time - this aircraft wore no camouflage over the engine gondols: these were left in "bare-metall" overall.

ToT 08:10
AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 A. Amir, #2 M. Poraz, #3 I. Barzilai, #4 Y. Richter (runway hit two RPB and six 500kg bombs, two or three Tu-16s destroyed)

ToT 08:14
AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #4 Gordon: (bombed runway with 250kg bombs, claimed 7 MiG-21s destroyed on the ground)

AB.233 Fa’id (Fayid), Egypt
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 J. Sahor/Shachar (45): (destroyed 1 An-12, Il-18, one MiG-19, and one MiG-17 or MiG-21), Maj. Sahor shot down by AAA, ejected and recovered;

AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn (bombed runway with 250kg bombs)

ToT 08:25
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 Capt. Shlomo Keren/Lt. Shabtai Ben-Shoa (IIN “66”), #2 R. Tzur, #3 B-Z Zohar, #4 M. Dvir: (claimed destruction of five Il-28, one MiG-17, one MiG-21 on the ground), intercepted by four MiG-21s, which fired several K-13s; #3 Capt. Ben-Zion Zohar (IIA “07”) made MiGs busy while the rest of the formation hit the target, then delivered his bombs.

AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979), Egypt
- 4 Mystére IVA 109 Sqn: results unknown

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 3 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 O. Marom, #2 Y. Neuman, #3 I. Spector: (runway hit by 500kg bombs, claimed 5 Tu-16s and another probable)

- 2 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 D. Ivry, #2 I. Gonen: (CAP over Sinai; Gonen shot at an Il-14 that crash-landed; Ivry strafed it on the ground)

ToT 08:40
AB.212 Bani Suwayf, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 E. Aharon, #2 A. Shamir, #3 U. Shachar, #4 A. Slapak: (runway hit by 500kg bombs, found no intact aircraft on the ground), #4 Slapak aborted

AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979), Egypt
- 4 Mystére IVA 109 Sqn: results unknown

ToT 09:00
AB.212 Bani Suwayf, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIBR, 2 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 G. Magen/E. Raz (IIBR “33”), 2 Y. Tal, #3. R. Goren: (attacked with 70kg RPBs, found no intact aircraft on the ground), IIBR photographed the target before RTB

ToT Unknown
AB.233 Fa’id (Fayid), Egypt
- ? Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 D. Nevo: nothing left to attack

- 2 Mirage IIICJs 101 Sqn, #1 A. Ran, #2 G. Epstein: (CAP over Abu Sueir, shot down 3 MiG-21s in air combats, Ran ejected due to fuel starvation)

Nile Delta, Egypt
- 1 Vatour IIBR 110 Sqn, #1 O. Nachman/A. Eyal (IIBR “31”): recce patrol over al-Arish, Bir Gifgafa and Bir Thamada, but armed with two 500kg bombs and not escorted

In March 1964 two Mirage IIIRJs were delivered to Israel, serialed 98 and 99, and allocated to the "Bat" Squadron. Both aircraft could be equipped with several different, interchangable camera noses, each of which was containing different types of cameras. The one depicted here was used during the frantic reconnaissance sortie flown over Egyptian airfields on 5 June, in the aftermath of the Wave I of Operation Moked. This "Moshel" camera nose contained an American Fairchild camera equipped with a wide angle lens, covered by a one-piece glazing unit that enable a panoramic view downwards. Such construction enabled the aircraft to execute the sortie while operating at a very low level and thus avoid early detection as well as enemy SA-2 SAMs.


© Copyright 2002-3 by ACIG.org

Operation Moked: Destruction of Arab Air Forces
By Tom Cooper, with Nigel Baker
Sep 24, 2003, 19:59

Map of Egyptian airfields in the Suez Canal Zone and on Sinai, confirmed to have been attacked by the IDF/AF on 5 June 1967. These were the primarty targets of the whole Operation "Moked".

Summary of the Wave I

- 170 IDF/AF fighters involved;
- 10 UARAF bases hit intentionally, one airfield hit by mistake;
- Vautours dropped 112 RPBs, a total of 7.840kg
- 196 UARAF aircraft claimed destroyed and 8 in air combats (all by 30mm guns); destruction of 140 confirmed;
- 10 IDF/AF fighters shot down – 5 pilots KIA, 2 PoW, 3 recovered (including 4 in air combat);
- UARAF fighters launched at least eight R-3S in air combats, for one near miss and one possible hit (both of which caused a loss).

- AB.212 Bani Suwayf: attacked by four formations, all aircraft destroyed on the ground, no IDF/AF fighters shot down; airfield closed;

- AB.228 Kibrit: 12 MiGs claimed destroyed on the ground, 3 MiGs and 2 Il-14s claimed shot down in air-to-air combats; two IDF/AF fighters shot down; airfield out of action;

- AB.229 Abu Sawayr: attacked by 10 formations, hit by 102 bombs (including a number of RPBs), most Il-28s destroyed on the ground, four MiG-21s shot down in air combats, two IDF/AF fighters shot down; airfield out of action;

- AB.231 Cairo West: all Tu-16s of 65 Air Brigade and the 95 Flight destroyed on the ground; no IDF/AF fighters shot down; airfield out of action;

- AB.232 Inshas: attacked by at least three formations, and most of the aircraft destroyed on the ground; one IDF/AF fighter shot down, pilot KIA; second IDF/AF badly damaged, later repaired; airfield out of action;

- AB.233 Fa’id (Fayid): attacked by at least five formations, heavily damaged, but not all aircraft destroyed; two IDF/AF fighters shot down, one pilot KIA; airfield closed;

- AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979): attacked by five formations, 14 aircraft on the ground, one in the air; three IDF/AF fighters shot down (including one in air-to-air combat); airfield out of action;

- AB.248 El-Sir/Jabel Libni: runway hit in two places (shortened from 2.800 to 1.100m), most of MiG-15s destroyed; no IDF/AF losses; airfield out of action;

- AB.259 El-Arish: 7 MiG-17 and two Il-14s destroyed on the ground; one IDF/AF fighter shot down; airfield out of action;

- AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah: attacked by three formations, all aircraft destroyed on the ground; no IDF/AF losses; airfield out of action;

- Cairo West IAP: not planned to be hit, but a formation of Mirages or SMB.2s hit this airfield due to a navigational mistake and seeing several UARAF fighters on the ground.

Wave II
ToT 10:00

AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, lead Capt. Shapira, (1 Il-28)

AB.??? Hulwan (Helwan), Egypt
- 3 Mirage IIICJ + 1 Mirage IIIBJ 101 Sqn, #1 D. Sever, #2. I. Peer, #3 A. Shamir, #4 G. Palter (IIIBJ): (claimed 2 or 3 MiG-15, 1 MiG-17, 1 MiG-19, 2 HA-200 destroyed and 1 An-12 damaged on the ground)

AB.202 al-Mezzeh, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, results unknown

el-Mansourah dispersal airfield, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, couldn’t find the target

AB.241 el-Minyah, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, lead by Capt. Sagee (8 Il-14 on the ground)
- 4 Mirage IIICJ, 101 Sqn, #1 Capt. A. Lev, #2 D. Baruch, #3 Y. Agmon, #4 aborted: (haven’t found any aircraft intact)

ToT 10:07
el-Mansourah dispersal airfield, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, lead by Maj. Shavit?, helped the earlier section to find target (destroyed several Il-14s on the ground)

AB.235 Bilbeis, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 O. Marom, #2 I. Spector, #3 E. Palter: (between 6 and 10 Il-14 claimed destroyed)

ToT 10:22
AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, short air combat with MiG-17PF flown by Lt. Hafiz, two MiG-17s crashed during landing on damaged runways;

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 3 MiG-17, Lt.Col. Shalabi, evacuated to Helwan

ToT 11:00
AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- several MiG-21FL and 2 or 3 MiG-21F-13s evacuated by Maj. Shuwakri to airfields in the south

Arab Counterattacks

Haifa (oil refinery), Deganiyah (dam), Meggido (auxiliary airfield), Israel
- attacked by 12 SyAAF MiG-17s and MiG-21s, which caused some damage in Haifa; two MiG-17s shot down by Mirage IIICJ Capt. Snir.

Tel Nov AB and Kfar Sirkin auxiliary, Israel
- 16 Hunters 1 Sqn RJAF (1 C-47 damaged at Tel Nov, 1 Noratlas destroyed at Kfar Sirkin)

Ramat David AB and Shomron crop-dusting runway, Israel
- 2 SyAAF MiGs attacked Shomron with a dummy airplane on it, destroying the dummy; one MiG shot down by AAA
- 8 or 12 Hunters 4 Sqn IrAF, (results of the attack unknown): one Hunter shot down by Capt. Sagee

Galilea, Israel
- IDF/AF Piper 100 Sqn attacked by 2 SyAAF MiG-17s, but evaded; SyAAF claims an SMB.2 or Mystére IVA as shot down;

Galilea, Israel, and southern Lebanon
- FAL Hunter shot down by Mirage IIICJ 117 Sqn Lt. Aven-Nir over Rayak AB, after pursuit from the Israeli-Lebanese border.

This Mirage IIICJ "Shahak" of the then 117 Squadron was flown by Lt. Aven-Nir when he intercepted and shot down a Lebanese Hunter, on 5 June 1967. The same fighter participated in engagements against Iraqi Hunters, either in response to an Iraqi strike against Israel, or in the scope of strikes against the H-3/al-Wallid airfield, in western Iraq.

ToT 11:07
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 Ouragans 113 Sqn, results unknown

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 Zohar/Talmor (IIN “66”), #2 Z. Tavor, #3 Y. Gal, #4 G. Goren: claimed destruction of 1 Tu-16, 4 MiG-21, 1 MiG-19, 1 unidentified.

Another successfull Israeli Vautour IIA was "26" (or "126", which flew 21 combat sorties during the Six Day War. This plane participated in attacks against several Egyptian and later also the Iraqi H-3/al-Wallid Air Base, where it should have destroyed two Hunters, two MiG-21s and three Tu-16s. It survived the war and is today preserved at the IDF/AF Technical School, in Haifa.

ToT 11:16
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, results unknown

AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 I. Golan/Capt. Inbar (IIN “62”), #2 A. Fridman, #3 I. Nir, #4 S. Zimon: underway to el-Minyah re-directed to Inshas, then destroyed remaining aircraft exposed on the ground (alternative reports indicate ToT at 11:09hrs – also no targets found and instead SAM-batteries were strafed)

ToT 11:20
AB.232 Inshas, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, results unknown

ToT 11:23
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, results unknown

ToT 11:30
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 Ouragans 113 Sqn, re-directed to other targets

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 A. Slapak, #2 Y. Neuman, #3 A. Ran, #4 Y. Arazi: (hit the runway, destroyed 2 MiG-21); intercepted by 4 MiG-21FLs; Capt. Hankin shot 2 MiG-21s down, but Lt. Nauman also shot down by K-13 hit, KIA on the ground

ToT 11:37
AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn, re-directed to other targets

AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, results unknown

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Vautour 110 Sqn, #1 B-Z. Zohar (destroyed 1 Tu-16, 4 MiG-21, damaged 1 MiG-19), intercepted by Maj. Shuwakri

ToT 11:45
Re-directed from el-Sir airfield to strike radar at AB.244 Bi’r Jifjafah (al-Mulayz or Meliz/Bir-Gifgafa/Bir-Gafgafa; Refidim AB from 1967-1979)
- ? Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 S. Dvir: results unknown

ToT 12:15
AB.??? Luxor, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIBR, 2 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 Keren (IIA “21”), #2 H. Budinger (IIA “14”), #3 Y. Rafaeli/Ben-Shoa (IIBR “33”): claimed destruction of 8 Tu-16s, and 8 An-12Bs

ToT ??:??
Target various: changed several times
- 3 or 4 Vautour II 110 Sqn, #1 G. Magen/Raz: original target Abu Sawayr, then changed to King Hussein’s Palace in Amman, finally attacked radar station near Port Said.

ToT 12:30
AB.235 Bilbeis, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn (damaged and destroyed many training aircraft)

AB.286 Hurghada/al-Ghardagah (Gardeka), Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, lead by Maj. Ronen, (destroyed at least 5 MiG-17, 1 Mi-8) while attacking intercepted by some of 20 MiG-19s and MiG-21s scrambled from Hurghada AB; 3 MiGs shot down in air combat, 4th crashed on landing, 16 others crashed while trying to land further to the north

Map of Egyptian airfields confirmed to have been attacked by IDF/AF on 5 June 1967

Summary of the Wave II


- 100+ IDF/AF fighters involved; operations disrupted by Arab air strikes against targets in Israel;
- 10 UARAF bases hit;
- 107 UARAF aircraft claimed destroyed on the ground and 8 or 9 in air combats (all by 30mm guns); number of confirmed unknown;
- 1 IDF/AF fighter shot down (in air combat) – pilot KIA;
- UARAF fighters launched at least four, probably six R-3S in air combats (for one kill).

- AB.202 al-Mezzeh, Egypt: results unknown;

- AB.228 Kibrit, Egypt: additional damage caused to hangars and installations, airfield closed;

- AB.229 Abu Sawayr, Egypt: airfield closed;

- AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt: two MiG-21 claimed destroyed on the ground, two shot down in air combat; one IDF/AF fighter shot down in air combat; airfield closed, but SA-2 sites remained active in the area;

- AB.232 Inshas, Egypt: airfield out of action, but SA-2 sites nearby still operational;

- AB.235 Bilbeis, Egypt: between six and ten Il-14s destroyed on the ground; medium damage;

- AB.241 el-Minyah, Egypt: row of Il-14s destroyed on the ground; airfield out of action;

- AB.286 Hurghada/al-Ghardagah (Gardeka), Egypt: five MiGs and one Mi-8 destroyed on the ground, three shot down in air combat, one crashed on the landing; 16 others crashed after arriving over the Nile Delta; airfield closed;

- AB.??? Luxor, Egypt: eight Tu-16s and eight An-12s claimed destroyed; airfield closed;

- AB.??? Hulwan (Helwan), Egypt: two or three MiG-15/17, one MiG-19, and one An-12 destroyed on the ground; airfield out of action;

el-Mansourah dispersal airfield, Egypt: results unclear; probably medium damage.

Wave III
ToT 12:48

Mafraq AB, Jordan
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 M. Shaked, #2 H. Boleh (94), #3 Z. Porat: destroyed a number of RJAF Hunters on the ground; #2 H. Boleh shot down by RJAF Hunter flown by PAF Flt.Lt. ; #3 Z. Porat damaged by AAA, landed safely

ToT 13:00
Cairo IAP
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 D. Ivry, #2 G. Epstein, #3 B. Romach, #4 M. Poraz: no appreciable results.

Mafraq AB, Jordan
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn: (most of the Hunters and Vampires found on the ground destroyed), #4 Lt. Harpaz, shot down by MIM-23As defending Dimona, Israel (fratricide fire)

ToT 14:00
Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 S. Dvir, #2 J. Zoreah (46): #2 Zorea shot down by AAA over the Sea of Galilee and KIA

ToT 14:07
Mafraq AB, Jordan
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 E. Fectori, #2 Shmilovits, #3 S. Ringel: 4 Hunters destroyed on the ground, #3 Ringel hit by SMAF and badly injured, landed safely

ToT 14:15
Dmeyr AB, Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, Capt. Umschweif (several MiG-17s destroyed on the ground)

Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB. Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 ?, #2 ?, #3 ?, #4 Mordechai: (several MiGs destroyed on the ground), #2 aborted, #4 Lt. Mordechai shot down, ejected over Lebanon and PoW

ToT 14:16
AB. 286 Hurghada/al-Ghardagah (Gardeka), Egypt; re-directed to Mafraq AB, Jordan
- 4 Mirage IIICJs 1?? Sqn: (destroyed remaining Hunters which landed after air combat minutes before)

AB.286 Hurghada/al-Ghardagah (Gardeka), Egypt; re-directed to Amman IAP
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn: (destroyed numerous training aircraft and helicopters)

ToT 14:22
Dmeyr AB, Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn: (several MiG-17s destroyed), Lt. Sigri shot down by MiG-19, ejected, KIA on the ground

Tsaykal AB, Syria
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn: results unknown

Amman IAP, Jordan
- 4 SMB.2s 105 Sqn, #1 ?, #2, #3 Harish, #4 ?: results unknown, #3 Lt. Harish injured by AAA

ToT 14:30
Dmeyr AB, Syria
- 1 Vautour IIBR, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 L. Tzur/A. Eyal (IIBR “31”), #2 A. Vilan (“07/107”), #3 A. Zsivoni, #4 U. Margalit: (attacked with 100kg bombs) Lt. Vilan shot down by AAA, ejected and PoW, two MiG-21s scrambled and counterattacked with two R-3s, both of which missed; on return towards base also attacked by single MiG-17

T.4 AB (some sources say hit only at around 16:00)
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn, #1 Eitan Carmi, #2 Rom, #3 A. Snir, #4 E. Prigat: (destroyed several aircraft on the ground)

Mafraq AB, Jordan
- 4 Mirage IIICJs 1?? Sqn: results unknown

Amman IAP
- 4 Ouragan 113 Sqn: results unknown

AB.228 Kibrit or AB.232 Inshas, Egypt; re-directed to Mafraq AB, Jordan; re-directed to Marj Real AB, Syria
- SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 Ron: (several MiG-17s destroyed on the ground)

By 14:45 RJAF neutralized due to the loss of all 30 Hunters and several Vampires.

ToT 14:39
AB.233 Fa’id, Egypt; changed underway to Amman IAP, Jordan
- 4 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 A Ben-Nun, #3 D. Harish, claimed 1 Alia DC-7 on the ground.

ToT 14:45
Dmeyr AB, Syria
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn: #1 M. Saar/U. Talmor, #2 M. Dvir, #3 R. Tsur, #4 I. Nir, (attacked with 100kg bombs, claimed several MiG-21s on the ground)

Marj Real AB, Syria
- 4 Ouragan 107 Sqn: results unknown

T.4 AB, Syria
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn: #1 O. Sagee, #2 O. Marom, #3 Shmuel: flew into air combat initiated between several MiG-21s and the section lead by Capt. Carmi; two MiG-21s shot down after one of them fired R-3 at Capt. Marom (then destroyed several aircraft on the ground, including two rolling MiG-21s)

Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB, Syria,
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 1?? Sqn: results unknown

ToT 14:52
Dmeyr AB, Syria
- Mystére IVA 109 Sqn: (several MiGs – for a total of 8 MiG-21s, 2 MiG-17, and several helicopters on that airfield)

Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn: results unknown

ToT 15:00
H-3/al-Wallid AB, Iraq
- 1 Vautour IIN, 3 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 G. Magen/A. Inbar (IIN “66”), #2 R. Goren, #3 Y. Tal, #4 D. Ilan: (strafed two Hunters rolling on take off, then hit a row of five Hunters, two MiG-17s, six MiG-21s, 1 An-12B) #4 aborted, chaotic attack due to interference from several IrAF MiG-21s; MiGs – either Syrian or Iraqi – attacked the formation again while it was flying back to Israel, firing at least one K-13.

One of the most successful Israeli Vautour IINs was "66", which not only destroyed three Il-14s, a Tu-16 and two unidentified aircraft during the Six Day War, but also participated in the first strike against the Iraqi H-3/al-Wallid AB, flown on the afternoon of 5 June 1967. The plane survived the war and served with the 110 Squadron until at least 1970, by when it was nick-named "Dracon" (Dragon).

Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 4 Mystére IVA 109 Sqn: results unknown

ToT 16:00
Tsaykal AB, Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 Y. Shavit: (3 Il-28, 4 MiG-17 destroyed on the ground), #3 damaged in fuel tank; formation intercepted by 2 MiG-21s but both Syrians shot down in air combat

ToT 13:00
Damascus/al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 3 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 D. Nevo: (claimed 2 Il-28, 1 Il-14 and 3 AAA positions destroyed)

Map of Jordanian and Syrian airfields confirmed to have been attacked by IDF/AF on 5 June 1967.

Summary of the Wave III


- 100+ IDF/AF fighters involved; operations slightly disrupted by frequent re-direction of attack formations;
- 10 airfields in Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and Iraq hit;
- 61 Syrian, some 30 Jordanian, and up to a dozen of Iraqi aircraft were claimed destroyed on the ground, and a dozen in air-to-air combats (all by 30mm guns); number of confirmed unknown;
- 4 IDF/AF fighters shot down (2 in air combat);
- UARAF fighters launched two or three R-3S for not hits.

- Mafraq AB and Amman IAP, Jordan: combat component of the RJAF wiped out in two successive waves of strikes against these airfields, both of which were put out of action.

- Dmeyr AB, al-Mezzeh AB, Tsaykal, Marj Rayal and T.4 were hit in Syria: the SyAAF suffered approximately 50% losses in these attacks; although Syrian interceptors were airborne and active during the first strikes, and they engaged Israeli fighter-bombers in at least four air-to-air combats, they suffered several losses for only one kill in return. By the late afternoon the Syrians were foremost busy evacuating their aircraft to airfields out of the Israeli reach – and the SyAAF was subsequently put “in strategic reserve”.


During the III Wave of Operation Moked, the IDF/AF flew the first strike against the Iraqi airfield H-3 ("al-Wallid"), in western Iraq. Although the Israelis claimed to have hit a number of Iraqi aircraft, their attack was considerably disturbed by IrAF interceptors and damage to many of parked aircraft minimal. This photograph, taken on 15 June 1967, shows a damaged Hunter F.Mk.59 in the foreground, and two Tupolev Tu-16 bombers in the rear. All three aircraft survived at least three (or four, according to other sources) Israeli strikes against H-3 AB. (Tom Cooper collection)

Wave IV
ToT 17:20

AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn, #1 N. Ronen: results unknown

AB.233 Fa’id AB, Egypt
- 2 Mystére IVA 116 Sqn, #1 M. Shaked: (dropped delay-fused bombs)

al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 117 Sqn, #1 Maj. Shmueli (several aircraft destroyed); Maj. Shmueli shot down, ejected over Israeli lines on Golan, recovered; Lt.. Sahar shot down, KIA

ToT 17:30
AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 4 Mirage IIICJ 119 Sqn (including Maj. Shapira): results unknown

Damascus IAP, Syria
- 4 SMB.2 105 Sqn, #1 Umschweif: (number of An-12s, Mi-6s, and MiGs destroyed)

The No.105 or "Scorpion" Squadron was the largest IDF/AF unit at the times of the Six Day War, having 39 aircraft of which 24 were readied for action on 5 June, all of which participated in the first wave, striking some of the most important targets. The Super Mystére B.2 was to become instrumental in destruction of the UARAF, even if the unit also suffered the highest losses of the war (nine aircraft shot down, six pilots killed and one PoW).

al-Mezzeh AB, Syria
- 4 Mystére IVA 109 Sqn: (results unclear), Lt. Zorak shot down, pilot KIA

ToT ??:??
AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 3 Mirage IIICJ 101 Sqn, #1 A. Lev, #2 E. Ran, #3 D. Shapira: (attacked with 250kg delay-fused bombs) attacked by several SA-2s but no hits

Dmeyr AB, Syria
- 3 Mirage III?J 1?? Sqn, #1 A. Lapidot, #2 D. Baruch, #3 E. Palter: (attacked with bombs, results unknown)

ToT 18:00 – but no action until 18:30
AB.260 Bi’r al-Thamadah, Egypt
- 1 Vautour IIBR, 1 Vautour IIN, 1 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 M. Gill/M. Eini, #2 M. Dvir, #3 Y. Tal (no navigator): strafed the airfield, then attacked Egyptian armour near Jabel Libni, and photographed Il-14 claimed to have been shot down by Mirages, that crash-landed in the desert

ToT 19:00
AB.??? Ras Banas, Egypt
- 4 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 I. Golan, #2 A. Fridman, #3. O. Nachman, #4. S. Zimon: results unknown

ToT ??:??
AB.231 Cairo West, Egypt
- 2 Vautour IIN, 2 Vautour IIA 110 Sqn, #1 Keren/Raz (IIN), #2 A. Fridman, #3 B-Z. Zohar/Ben-Shoa (IIN), #4 U. Margalit: unclear if really flown as Fridman is known to have attacked Ras-Banas.

Summary of the Wave IV


- Less than 60 IDF/AF fighters involved; attacks against enemy airfields decreased as the main role of the IDF/AF became CAS;
- 5 airfields in Egypt and Syria hit;
- Approximately a dozen of Syrian fighters destroyed on the ground; no air-to-air combats.
- 2 IDF/AF fighters shot down.


© Copyright 2002-3 by ACIG.org

Arab Air Forces on 5 June 1967
By Tom Cooper & Franz Vajda
Sep 24, 2003, 20:08

QJJ (al-Quwwat al-Jawwiya al-Jaza’eriya)

Having gained its independence from France only in 1962, Algeria was a completely new appearance in the wars between the Arabs and Israel. The true extension of its participation in specific phases of this conflict remains largely unknown until today.

In 1967 the QJJ was still a young service: the Algerian Air Force was formed only in November 1962 with Soviet and Egyptian help around five MiG-15s, 12 Gomhouriahs supplied from Egypt, and 12 Czech C.11s (Yak-11). After purchasing additional light aircraft and helicopters from the USA and France, in 1963 more combat aircraft were acquired from the USSR again, including 15 MiG-15bis, few MiG-15UTIs, 20 MiG-17Fs, and 12 Il-28s. After a short war with Morocco, in 1963, in 1964 and 1965 even more aircraft were received, including 20 MiG-17Fs, 12 additional Il-28s, and the first eight MiG-19s and six MiG-21F-13s. By June 1967 the Algerians therefore had a fully-developed regiment with three squadrons of MiG-17s, one bomber regiment with two squadrons Il-28s, a mixed fighter squadron with MiG-19s and MiG-21s, one squadron of MiG-15s and a transport regiment with a squadron each of An-12s and Il-14s.

Almost all the Algerian MiG-17s and certainly all MiG-21s were sent to Egypt during the war. Flying via Tunisia and Libya the aircraft – formed into two “large” MiG-17-units, and one MiG-21-unit – they started arriving already on the afternoon of 5 June, although most followed on the following day.





The Egyptian Air Force was definitely the most powerful Arab air arm in 1967. It boasted 560 aircraft and helicopters, plus a small reserve, of which 431 were combat aircraft, including 278 modern MiG-19s and MiG-21s, Su-7s, and Tu-17s. combat and 200 support aircraft and helicopters, staffed by 11.000 military and 5.000 civilian personnel. This large force saw a decade of fascinating development since the last war in which it participated.

Although there were some negotiations with the USA immediately after the Suez Crisis, in late 1956 Egypt once again turned to the USSR for acquisition of new weapons needed to rebuild its battered military. The Soviets were swift to use the opportunity and promised supplies of arms and equipment worth $150 million, in addition to already granted loans for the building of the Asswan dam. Already in March 1957 three Soviet merchants arrived in Alexandria, with 15 MiG-17, ten Il-28, and radar equipment for the EAF. Meanwhile all the aircraft evacuated to Saudi Arabia and Syria were returned to Egypt.

Additional deliveries from the USSR, as well as 650 Soviet, Polish, and Czechoslovak instructors enabled Egypt to completely rebuild and reorganize its air force, but also standardise the equipment. By July 1957 the EAF boasted almost 100 MiG-15s and MiG-17s, and 40 Il-28s, and many of these aircraft were presented to the public during a large parade in Cairo on 23 of the same month. At the same time a large number of Egyptian officers, pilots, and technicians were sent to the USSR, Poland, Bulgaria, and Czechoslovakia for training, few even to the USA. Some of them were to spend up to four years on different courses outside Egypt in the following years, as the investment in training and further development of the EAF was massive. In the course of the following years the Egyptians have completely reorganized their air force. Many would say that the new structure was “according to the Soviet doctrine”: the Egyptians, however, always stress that they were doing their things in their own way, taking some ides from the Soviets, but others also in the West.

Indeed, the EAF was now formed into Air Brigades, each of which consisted of usually three units and was connected into a centralized air defence system, controlled by the Supreme Command Council (SCC), itself under control of the General Headquarters. Some brigades, or units within them were actually put under a direct control of the Army. On the other side of the chain of command air brigades were local control centres, in turn integrated into a newly-established command and control system, supported by two dozens of radar stations and numerous groups of ground observers. Most of the existing airfields were also enlargened, with additional hangars, work-shops, and depots being built.

When in 1958 Egypt, Yemen and Syria joined into the United Arab Republic, the EAF was correspondingly renamed into United Arab Republic Air Force (UARAF), and its command structure enlargened to control also the Syrian and the Yemeni air forces. Despite intense cooperation and unit exchange in the following years, however, the UARAF was eventually never to become a really „united“ air force. The simple reason was that the Egyptian air force was well relatively developed, equipped, and trained, but also confronted with completely different problems than the other two forces that made the UARAF. The Syrian Arab Air Force (SyAAF), for example, was suffering from several subsequent coups in Damascus, each of which brought a new purge of commanding officers. The Yemeni Air Force was existent only due to extensive Egyptian support. Besides, except Israel, all the three parts of the UARAF had also different other enemies. Syria, for example was antagonized by Turkey and Iraq as much as by Israel, while Yemen had no border to Israel at all.

Nevertheless, the establishment of the UAR made Egypt to the leading Arab nation, and acquisitions of additional aircraft developed the Egyptian part of the UARAF into the most powerful air force in the Middle East. Even if the UAR was not to last very long (it fell apart already in 1961, mainly because of a new regime that climbed to power in Damascus after another military-supported coup), the Egyptian air force kept its name and was therefore still designated UARAF.

By 1960 the Egyptian air force was larger than the whole IDF/AF. Most of the Egyptian fighters were also more advanced than the types flown by the Israeli: the Egyptian part of the UARAF boasted no less but four regiments with a total of almost 150 MiG-15s and MiG-17F/PFs, one regiment with some 60 Il-28 bombers, and one transport regiment with Il-14s and An-12s. However, in the subsequent years the Egyptian part of the UARAF was to be faced by considerable problems, most of which were connected with the simultaneous acquisition of a large number of combat aircraft of an entirely new generation, but also due to Egypt’s involvement in the war in Yemen.

Between 1958 and 1965 Egypt purchased a total of 100 MiG-19S fighters. Originally, the number of acquired airframes was much lower, and only enough to organize two sizeable units, the 20th and 21st Fighter Squadrons. However, the aircraft proved to have several serious flaws in construction, the most important one being that the piping of the hydraulic system was positioned too close to the engine and thus suffered from overheating, causing a number of catastrophic accidents. The number of available aircraft fell so rapidly, that by 1964 the 20th and 21st Squadron had to be combined into one large unit. Other Arab air forces had even more significant problems when operating MiG-19s, however, so in 1964 a decision was taken the Egyptians to take over all the 30 remaining Syrian and ten Iraqi examples. While the ex-Iraqi MiG-19s were flown to Egypt, a majority of Syrian MiG-19s remained in Syria, but were given to two Egyptian UARAF units permanently based there.

Meanwhile the Egyptians learned about the appearance of a new fighter jet, capable of flying at Mach 2, but relatively simple to fly: the MiG-21. Excellent flying characteristics, armament of two 30mm cannons and a useful ranging radar made the 21 exceptionally interesting. When in 1961 it became known that Israel was about to order what was thought to would be 40 Mirage IIICs from France, Egypt immediately ordered a similar number of MiG-21Fs from the USSR, and the first group of Egyptian pilots was sent to the USSR for training. The first 40 MiG-21F-13s arrived in Egypt already in June and July 1962, forming a single regiment of three squadrons. In 1963, however, the UARAF learned that the total Israeli order was for 72 Mirages, and consequently a second order for MiG-21F-13s was issued to increase the number of these fighters to 120, and equip a complete division with them. After the pilot-training proved more complex than expected, in 1964 also 40 MiG-21Us were acquired, while in the same year also the first 40 all-weather MiG-21PFs were purchased, used to re-equip three units that were previously flying MiG-21F-13s: this older version was then “cascaded” to other units, previously flying MiG-17s and MiG-19s.

In 1962 the UARAF was further reinforced by 30 Tupolev Tu-16 bombers, a number of which belonged to the Tu-16K-11-16 version, equipped with AS-1 and AS-5 guided air-to-ground missiles, and could target Israel from safe distances, without the need to risk being intercepted by Israeli fighters. A single regiment with three squadrons of Tu-16s was formed in 1964, but it was still in training in 1967. In the meantime, the acquisition process of MiG-21s was continued, as in 1966 the UARAF purchased also 75 improved MiG-21PFM fighters to establish four new squadrons. Actually, no new squadrons were established: four selected units converted to this variant, cascading their own MiG-21F-13s and MiG-21PFs to other – already existing – units. Many F-13s and PFs were meanwhile lost in accidents, while some were given to other air forces. Consequently, although purchasing no less but 235 MiG-21s between 1961 and 1967, and – at least on the paper – having six interceptor and six fighter-bomber squadrons equipped with them - on 5 June 1967 the UARAF effectively had only 108 MiG-21s in service, which were enough for only nine units of 12 aircraft each!

Another very important delivery was 64 Su-7BMK ground attack planes between July 66 and June 67. the Egyptian pilots disliked the type, because of its short range, but also because of lots of defects and little fighting capability due to its small payload. But, the Soviets insisted, and thus the first batch of 64 aircraft was ordered, followed by a second batch of 30. By June 1967 a total of 64 were delivered and there were plans to organize a full division with two regiments and six squadrons with them. But, by June 1967 only the No. 55 Squadron, based at Fa’id, was about to complete the conversion, having 15 qualified pilots and 15 operational Su-7BMKs.

It should be mentioned here, that in the early and mid-1960s Egypt was also investing heavily into the manufacture of the Ha-200 and then the development of the Ha-300 jet aircraft. The first was a trainer developed in Spain, 63 of which were built at the Aircraft Works in Hulwan, as Ha-200 al-Kahiras, but which suffered from unreliable engines. The Ha-300 was a much more ambitious project for a light-weight, delta-winged, supersonic fighter, developed with German, Austrian, and Spanish help, and with Indian involvement. This highly interesting and promising project, however, was cancelled after the war in 1967.

In total, by 1967 the Egyptian air force was a very modern air arm, well-equipped, but the quality of the training of its personnel was different. The UARAF foremost lacked sufficient technicians to keep its aircraft operational. Out of some 700 qualified pilots and 150 navigators, only roughly 150 were rotated to Yemen where they gained combat experience, and barely more than 200 could have been considered as experienced. Most of the others were still in the middle of the training of one sort or the other, and exactly this, together with the fundamental weaknesses within the SCC as well as the General Headquarters, was to eventually prove as the main weakness of the UARAF. Namely, the Egyptians lacked anything but a very general plan for the case of a war: despite having the only air force in possession of dedicated light and medium bombers in the whole Middle East, the Egyptians were not expecting to deploy their air power in offensive manner. In fact, most of the commanding officers in responsible positions simply did not know what to do in the case the fighting would break out. Most were also not ready to act on their own, instead preferring to wait for orders from above: if these would not arrive, their units would do nothing. The highly centralized command system was also slow to forward commands down to various squadrons, and the cooperation between the UARAF, the Army and the Navy was therefore very poor. Although the Egyptian pilots and officers were confident and their equipment modern, their experiences from Yemen as well as combat against tactical fighters as flown by the Israeli were completely ignored, and the whole force was actually untested in combat. Brig. Gen. (ret.) Tamim Fahmi ‘Abd Allah criticised the Soviet training concepts of the time (see Phoenix over the Nile, p:
- I didn’t like the kind of training we were getting because it was very hypothetical. We were not unique, probably the Soviet Union and all Soviet bloc countries trained the same way, but I will never forgive us for following this same path. We were in combat a lot in Yemen, so we should have known better. But we got our equipment from the Soviets and we believed them, we didn’t believe ourselves. We were flying all the time at high altitudes, high speeds – supersonic much of the time. Anyone who would fl low could get court-martialled. I was once in big trouble because I flew low. We did so in Yemen a lot, but after we came home it was forgotten.

Many Egyptian officers complained the Soviets were not training them any tactics at all. Brig.Gen. (ret.) Qadri al-Hamid concluded (ibid, p.198):
We were lacking in the theory of air combat: the Russians had given us training but not good tactics. They trained us to fly at Mach 2 and do high-level intercepts and night fighting. All of this did not happen in the 1967 War with Israel – it was all fought on the deck. You train for something, and if it doesn’t happen that way, you aren’t prepared.

Maj.Gen. Abdel Nasr, former Chief-of-Staff of the UARAF commented (Wings over Suez, p.366):
When the Russians came they emphasised training to make us staff and general officers. They didn’t teach us tactics but they succeeded in teaching us to think in a proper and organized manner... When I was in the Soviet Union I had many relations with the training department because of my job. I was discussing with them how to train our troops. I discovered that they gave us a course in elementary training but they didn’t teach us tactics. They had their own tactics but they wouldn’t be good for us because they depended upon massing and he use of large numbers that were not available to us.

Contrary to the Israeli Air Force, were the aggressiveness and initiative were some of the main predispositions for all officers and pilots, the Egyptians were not permitted to operate aggressively, as Col. (ret.) Tahsin Zaki recalled (PON, p.192):
I was commander of the 2nd Air Wing of MiG-17s during 1965, which included a squadron of MiG-17s stationed permanently at al-Arish. Our orders were not to fly near the Egyptian-Israeli border, but the Israelis often penetrated our airspace, flying very low, even right over al-Arish airport. This made my pilots feel very bad because of the restrictions the high command had put against penetrating the Israeli border. To boost the morale of my pilots, I allowed them, at times, to penetrate at low level until Beersheba.

Consequently, while impressive on the paper, the UARAF had some serious limitations. Tahsin Zaki commented in summary:
We held exercises to test the efficiency of our air defence against low-flying aircraft. The air defences failed completely to spot any aircraft flying below 400 meters because of the outmoded Russian radars that were incapable of detecting any aircraft flying low. A meeting was held attended by the supreme commander of the Air Force. This meeting ended after one of the Russian advisors said that the air defence system of the UAR was sound but needed some minor modifications of the SAM sites north of the Canal Zone – which surprised me a lot!

Finally, the UARAF was also not trained for operations at high tempo. Its technicians were not trained to match as short turn-around times of aircraft like the Israelis were, and the Egyptians could sedum maintain more than between 60 and 65% of their aircraft in operational condition. Even if this was a readiness rate comparable with such air forces like the US or Soviet at the time, it was insufficient against Israel. Perhaps for this reason the SCC turned down requests from local commanders to fly permanent combat air patrols along the Suez Canal and the most important air bases, explaining there was no money for that. Quite on the contrary, even in the final days before the war the UARAF interceptor units were flying only patrols in the early morning: after 0800hrs all the aircraft would be on the ground, rearming, refuelling and with their crews getting breakfast. In the light of the fact that not only officers within the UARAF, but also some higher-ranking officers have warned of the way the Israelis would attack Egypt, it is completely unclear why was the Egyptian high command ignoring the lessons from the war in Yemen or suggestions from its own experienced officers and pilots; why were the aircraft not dispersed and air bases readied to survive a surprising Israeli strike.

UARAF: Order of Battle on 5 June 1967
The organizational structure of the UARAF on 5 June 1967 was extremely complex, then in the weeks since it was mobilized (on 13 May 1967) most of the units were moved around a great deal in an attempt to confuse the Israeli intelligence. Additionally, many units were prepared to operate from several different bases – in addition to their main base, and had their aircraft dispersed on up to three different airfields. To increase the problems in tracking down the Egyptian units, it must also be said that in 1965 the UARAF was completely reorganized, receiving new squadron numbers in separate blocks, while most of the designations for units 1 thru 29 were kept too. In the face of tight security measures introduced after the Six Day War, many former pilots and modern-day observers are therefore still confused about the exact designation and dislocation of numerous units until today. The order of battle offered bellow is the best available in the moment.

It should be added, that in June 1967 the UARAF had a total of 431 combat aircraft, including 124 MiG-15/17s, 80 MiG-19s, 108 MiG-21s, 60 Su-7BMKs, 29 Il-28s, and 30 Tu-16s, as well as a large number of support and transport aircraft, and helicopters.

1 AB
(this brigade was scheduled for conversion to Su-7BMK, which were to equip three squadrons, but by 5 June 1967 only one unit became operational)
- 55 Sqn, 15 Su-7BMK, Fayid; Egyptian Su-7s were also left in „bare metal“ overall, and wore small black serials on the forward fuselage: 7664
- Unknown Sqn, in formation
- Unknown Sqn, in formation

2 AB el-Arish
(this Brigade was scheduled for conversion to Su-7BMK, which were to equip three squadrons, but this could not be done before 5 June 1967)
- 24 Sqn, MiG-15bis, Jebel Libni
- 31 Sqn, MiG-15bis, Kibrit
- Unknown Sqn, formation on Su-7BMK planned

3 or 4 (?) AB
- 43 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, status and base unknown (probably only nominally existent)
- 46 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, status and base unknown (probably only nominally existent)
- 47 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, status and base unknown (probably only nominally existent)

5 AB
- 10 Sqn, 20 MiG-21F-13 & 1 MiG-15UTI, Bi’r Jifjafah/al-Mulayz
- 22 Sqn, MiG-21PFM, Kibrit
- 26 Sqn, MiG-21PFM, Kibrit

As delivered to the UARAF, all the MiG-21F-13s were in bare metal overall. The original batch of 40 wore small black serials on the forward fuselage in the range 5001 thru (probably) 5040. The second batch of 80 MiG-21F-13s were left in the same colours and with the same form of serials, probably in range from 5801 thru 5919. With these aircraft the original 5th, 7th, and 9th Air Brigades were formed, in 1964.


7 AB
- 41 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, Cairo International
- 42 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, Abu Sawayr
- 45 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, Abu Sawayr
Each UARAF squadron had a handful of MiG-21Us. These were left in bare metal overall and wore small black serials on the forward fuselage, in the range 5601 thru 5640.


9 AB
- 40 Sqn, MiG-21PF, Fa’id
- 44 Sqn, MiG-21PF, Inshas & Bi’r Jifjafah/al-Mulayz
- 49 Sqn, MiG-21PFM, Inshas
The Egyptian MiG-21PFs were also left in bare metal overall and they wore small black serials on the forward fuselage in the range 5401 thru 5440. The more advanced MiG-21PFMs were left in bare metal overall as well, but some were observed having small black “anti-glare” panels in front of the cockpit. Their serials were in the range 5201 thru 5240.


12 AB (The main base of this unit was Kibrit, and its main task was close-support for the Army. For that purpose parts of its squadrons were put directly under the Army Command.)
- 25 Sqn, MiG-17F, Kibrit, el-Arish & Bi’r al-Thamadah
- 31 OCU, MiG-17PF, Kibrit & Luxor


15 AB
- 20/21 Combined Sqn, MiG-19, Hurghada/al-Ghardagah
- ? Sqn, MiG-17s & MiG-19s in Damascus, Syria


20 AB
- 5 Sqn, MiG-17F, el-Arish
- 18 Sqn, MiG-15 & MiG-17F, el-Arish & Jabel Libni; aluminium overall, red-white chequered rudder



61 AB
- 2 Sqn, MiG-17, Bi’f al-Thamadah
- 8 Light Bomber Squadron, Il-28, Abu Sawayr; bare metal overall, black serial on the forward fuselage: 1733
- 9 Light Bomber Squadron, Il-28, Cairo West & Ras Banas
- ? Light Bomber Squadron, Il-28, Cairo West


65 AB
- ? Medium Bomber Squadron, Tu-16, Cairo West;
- ? Medium Bomber Squadron, Tu-16, Bani Suwayf;
- 95 Medium Bomber Flight, Tu-16K-11-16, Cairo West; aircraft were left „bare metal“ overall, but had large black serials in Persian characters on the rear fuselage: 4374, 4384

Other units
- 7 Helicopter Squadron, 6 Mi-6; Cairo West
- 11 Transport Squadron, DC-3/C-47/Dakota; Cairo West & el-Mansourah
- 12 Helicopter Squadron, Mi-4, Bi’r Jifjafah
- ? Transport Squadron, Il-14, Cairo West & Bilbeis
- 16 Transport Squadron, An-12B, Cairo West, Aswan
- 40 Sqn, Mi-8, Bi’r Jifjafah & Hurghada/al-Ghardagah &

The detailed losses of the UARAF during the Six Day war were as follows:

- 89 MiG-15/17s (including 9 in air-to-air combat)
- 29 MiG-19 (including 16 in air-to-air combat)
- 98 MiG-21s (including 29 in air-to-air combat)
- 27 Su-7BMK (including four in air-to-air combat)
- 29 Il-28 (including two shot down in air combats)
- 29 Tu-16s
- 24 Il-14s (including one shot down by the Israeli fighters)
- 8 An-12s (including one shot down by the Israeli fighters)
- 1 Mi-4
- 10 Mi-6
- 4 other support aircraft were lost as well

This was an obvious and veritable catastrophe, especially that by the time hardly a handful of Egyptian MiG-21s – mere ten – survived the war, except for the few supplied by Algeria from 5 June onwards, at least one, but most probably three, of which ended in Israeli hands, when they were sent to el-Arish airfield, which was already captured by the enemy. Certainly, it is known that out of some 40 MiG-17s and MiG-21s sent by Algeria to Egypt, only between six and eight were returned in 1968. Nevertheless, immediately after the war a massive resupply was started. The Czechs have sent 30 MiG-21F-13s (serialled from 5701 upwards) and started a delivery or 122 modern L-29 trainers. 75 MiG-21PFM from the USSR were supplied by the end of 1967 as well (serialled 8001 upwards). Much more problematic was replacement of some 100 fully qualified pilots killed during the war. In order to bolster the training the UARAF consequently purchased 24 additional MiG-21US as well (serialled 5641 upwards).


© Copyright 2002-3 by ACIG.org


Dr. Yahia Al Shaer

Meanwhile, the Iraqis followed a completely different politics in regards to the equipment of their air force. Essentially, the RirAF of the 1950s was completely British-trained and –equipped. The RIrAF was already operating 12 Vampire FB.Mk.52s, six Vampire T.Mk.55s, as well as 19 Venom FB.Mk.1s and FB.Mk.50s since the mid-1950s. In 1956 also the first 15 Hunter F.Mk.6 were ordered: they were supplied – with US financial help – in two batches, the first of which consisted of five aircraft delivered in April 1957, and the second of ten aircraft delivered in December 1957, all from RAF Middle East stocks. In 1958 the USA supplied also five F-86F Sabres to Iraq. The Hunters entered service with the No. 1 Squadron, based at Tahmouz/Habbaniyah AB. The Sabres, however, were not to enter service: they were parked in a hangar at al-Raschid AB, and were left there for some tiime before being returned to the USA, in the early 1960s.

The situation in Iraq changed completely after the bloody coup that seept the young King Feisal from power, in 1958, after which the new regime allied with the USSR. The fighting in the aftermath of the coup saw the first combat use of Hunters, when F.Mk.6s of the No.1 Sqn (together with Fury F.Mk.1s of the No. 4 Sqn) were used to rocket and straffe royalist strongholds in southern Iraq.

Once again the Soviets were very swift to react to the Iraqi requests for arms supplies, and already n 1958 the first MiG-15s and MiG-17s were delivered to Iraq, entering service with the No.5 Squadron, replacing Vampires. In 1962 Iraq then acquired 40 MiG-19 from the USSR, followed by the first 12 MiG-21F-13s. The Iraqis experienced exactly the same problems with their MiG-19s like the Egyptians, and this fact hampered the furter orders from the USSR for a number of years to come, while most of the MiG-19s were sold to Egypt, in 1965.

Meanwhile, after two other changes of different regeimes in Baghdad, by 1964 Iraq was purchasing new fighters only from the UK, so that between 1964 and 1966 between 42 and 45 additional examples were acquired. These were supplied in two large batches, designated F.Mk.59 (24 ex-Belgian examples, brought to the FGA.9 standard before deliverey), and FGA.59A (18 ex-Dutch examples, also brought to FGA.9 standard before delivery), all of which had their flaps cut-out to enable the carriage of large external tanks. Finally, five F.Mk.59Bs were added, all of which were compatible with three-camera noses for photo reconnaissance. New Hunters were used to reinforce the No.4 and No.7 Squadrons.

In general, most of training and traditions of the Iraqi Air Force at the time were of British origins, and RAF-related. In the 1950s future Iraqi Hunter-pilots were trained at RAF Chivenor, and their training syllabus was almost completely based on that of the RAF Hunter units. Iraqi pilots of the time flew between 170 and 200 hours annually, with several main exercises each year, especially in air-to-ground and air-to-air gunnery. The appearance of the Soviets in Iraq, starting with 1958, changed almost nothing: the Iraqis saw the USSR only as a weapons-supplier, and wanted no Soviet political influence in their country. Consequently, even the pilots flying MiGs continued using the tactical methods they inherited from the British.

In fact, it was not before 1966 that the Iraqis realized that the British would not sell them their Lightning interceptors and therefore felt compelled to contact Moscow again, with an order for no less but 60 MiG-21PFs. These fighters, however, were not to reach Iraq before the Six Day War, and therefore in early June 1967 the IrAF was organized as follows:

- No. 1 Sqn/Flight A, Hunter F.Mk.6 H-3/al-Wallid & Tahmouz/Habbaniyah;
The first batch of IrAF Hunters was painted Extra Dark Sea Grey and Dark Green in standard RAF pattern over, Silver undersides. These aircraft wore black serials on the rear fuselage: 394, 396, 401, 403, 575, 579 and others.

The 16 F.Mk.6s supplied in 1957 were all from RAF stocks, and their British serials were:
- XJ677
- XJ678
- XJ679
- XJ681
- XJ682
- XK143
- XK144
- XK145
- XK146
- XK147
- XK152
- XK153
- XK154
- XK155
- XK156

Two of these aircraft were seen with serials 570 and 578 in service with the IrAF.


- No. 1 Sqn/Flight B operated the five FR.Mk.10s Iraq acquired in 1966. All were actually supplied under the designation F.Mk.59B, and were ex-Dutch aircraft, converted to FGA.9 standard, albeit compatible with three-camera recce noses. The Iraqi FR.Mk.10s had their noses and/or fins painted in red, like this was the case with Jordanian reconnaisance Hunters as well. The exact significance of these markings are unknown. Their former Dutch serials were:
- N-205
- N-221
- N-259
- N-263

- No. 2 Bomber Squadron, Il-28, Moascar al-Rashid;
Iraqi Il-28s were left in bare metal overall and had black serials applied on the forward fuselage, repeated on the fin. Known serials are: 423 (Il-28U), 426, 428 (Il-28U).

- No. 3 Transport Squadron, A Flight, Freighter, Il-14, An-12BP;
For details about Iraqi Bristol Freighters see article “Iraqi Air Force since 1948”, in the “Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf” data-base.
Iraq received at least six An-12s by 1967. The first three were painted Grey overall, cockpit roof in white, title „I.A.F“ in black in Arabic characters underneath the cockpit, repeated in Persian characters on the rear fuselage: 501, 502, 505, 506, 636, 805, 806.
The only known photograph of an Iraqi Il-14 is in black and white, and shows the aircraft in camouflage colours probably consisting of Dark Green and Sand over, and “Russian Light Blue” underneath, without any serials, but with a larger Iraqi flash on the fin.

- No. 3 Transport Squadron, B Flight, Mi-1 & Mi-4, Moascar al-Rashid;

- No. 3 Transport Squadron, C Flight 12 Wessex Mk.52 and ? Dragonfly, Moascar al-Rashid;
Both types were camouflaged in Dark Earth/Light Brown over, Azure Blue underneath. Only one serial for a Dragonfly is known, applied in Black on the boom: 332.

- No. 4 Fighter Squadron, Hunter F.Mk.59A, H-3/al-Wallid & Habbaniyah;
Extra Dark Sea Grey and Dark Green in standard RAF pattern over, Silver undersides; white serials on the rear fuselage; known are 629-633, 657-661, and 665-677. This unit mainly flew F.Mk.59As supplied between 1963 and 1965, most of which were ex-Belgian and ex-Dutch F.Mk.6s, brought to the FGA.9-standard. Their former serials were:
- IF-6
- IF-10
- IF-11
- IF-14
- IF-20
- IF-21
- IF-24
- IF-27
- IF-28
- IF-32
- IF-48
- IF-75
- IF-79
- IF-80
- IF-88
- IF-94
- IF-107
- IF-114
- IF-122
- IF-126
- IF-140
- IF-142
- N-234
- N-247

- No. 5 Fighter Squadron, MiG-17F, Kirkuk;
Iraqi MiG-17s were left in bare metal overall, and wore black serials on the front fuselage, probably repeated on the top of the fin. Known examples are: 343 and 452.

- No. 6 Fighter Squadron, Venom F.Mk.1 & FB.Mk.52 (replaced by MiG-21PFs in 1968), Habbaniyah;
For details see article “Iraqi Air Force since 1948”, in the “Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf” data-base.

- No. 7 OCU (Operational element designated No. 702 Squadron), Hunter F.Mk.59/F.Mk.59A & T.Mk.66, Habbaniyah:
Extra Dark Sea Grey and Dark Green in standard RAF pattern over, Silver undersides; white serials on the rear fuselage. This unit foremost operated two-seat Hunters, including the original three that came into existence through conversion of ex-Belgian F.Mk.6s IF-68, IF-84, and IF-143, and were serialled 567, 568 and 569 in IrAF, after delivery in 1962. However, two additional serials of Iraqi T.Mk.66s are known, 626 and 627, which should have arrived in 1965 from an unknown source. Iraq has lost a total of five Hunters on the ground during the Six Day War, and one or two in air-to-air combats. The main equipment It is unclear if it was this unit for which also the third series of Hunters was acquired in the UK. Namely, already while the first 24 F.Mk.59s were in production, the Iraqis ordered 18 additional aircraft. Hawker used 16 former Belgian and two Dutch F.Mk.6s to build a series designated F.Mk.59A in Iraqi service. All of these aircraft were delivered by May of 1967, their original serials being:
- IF-8
- IF-9
- IF-22
- IF-25
- IF-29
- IF-31
- IF-54
- IF-59
- IF-71
- IF-72
- IF-74
- IF-87
- IF-93
- IF-99
- IF-135
- IF-138
- N-253
- N-255


- No. 8 Bomber Squadron, Tu-16, al-Rashid;
Iraq received a total of eight Tu-16s between 1962 and 1966, of which six were intact and four operational on 5 June. The aircraft were left in bare metal overall, and wore thick serials applied in Black on the rear fuselage. Known original serials were: 499, 500, 503, and 504.

- Unknown COIN Squadron, Jet Provost T.Mk.52, base unknown;
All Iraqi Strikemasters were left in bare metal overall. Several examples were photographed wearing large panels in Day-Glo Orange on the rear fuselage. Serials were 600 thru 619, and worn on the rear fuselage in Black.

- No. 11 Fighter Squadron, MiG-19S, al-Rashid; This unit was still in the process of conversion to MiG-21PF after all of its MiG-19s were given to Egypt, in 1965. Original MiG-19s of the Iraqi Air Force should have either been left in bare metal overall, or painted light grey overall. It is known also that most - if not all - of them also wore names of different Iraqi cities, applied in Arabic, in white, underneath the cockpits. This practice was kept by the Egyptians when the aircraft came in their possession. The MiG-19 shown bellow wears the name of "Basrah".


- No. 17 Sqn, MiG-21F-13, H-3/al-Wallid & Habbaniyah;
Iraqi MiG-21F-13s were all left bare metal overal. Small black serials were usually applied on the front fuselage. Known examples are: 534 (flown to Israel in August 1966), 609, 628 (the last survived to become a gate-guard at as-Shoibiyah AB, in the 1990s).


- Unknown Unit, Vampire T.Mk.55, probably al-Gayyar AB/Mosul, or al-Hurriyah AB/Kirkuk;
For details see article “Iraqi Air Force since 1948”, in the “Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf” data-base.

Dr. Yahia Al Shaer
RJAF (Royal Jordanian Air Force)

The Royal Jordanian Air Force came into existence only in the early 1950s, and was heavily dependent on foreign help in its early years. Yet, contrary to the situation in Egypt, the young King Hussein took a great care not to let his military become involved in politics. Besides, the Jordanian military was cooperating very closely with the British: all RJAF pilots were trained in the UK and RAF-instructors were almost permanently assigned to the RJAF. Consequently, the local officers, pilots, technicians and other ranks were trained in a highly professional manner, and even if there were comparatively few of them, they were probably the best of all the Arab airmen of the time, even if their equipment was not as advanced as that of Egypt or even Syria.

The first jet aircraft of the RJAF were nine Vampire FB.Mk.9s and two Vampire T.Mk.11s, supplied from the UK in 1954. Two years later also seven ex-EAF Vampire FB.Mk.52s were donated by Egypt.

In the aftermath of their “show of support” for the King Hussein – i.e. the British intervention in 1958 (see the separate article in this data-base) – the British supplied 12 Hunter F.Mk.6 as well. These were used to equip the No. 1 Squadron, while the Vampires were “cascaded down” to the No. 2 Squadron. When the British instructors noticed that the less-experienced Jordanian pilots had some problems with converting from slow piston-engined training aircraft to fighter jets also 12 Harvard T.Mk.2Bs were supplied. By 1964 additional 23 Hunter F.Mk.73s and FGA.9s were supplied to RJAF, and by 1967 the Jordanians planned to re-equipp the No.2 Squadron with them as well. This decision was in part based on the fact that from 1965 the USA started supplying arms to Jordan. Initially, some 200 M-47 and M-48 tanks, a similar number of M-113 armoured personnel carriers, and M-109 self-propelled howitzers were delivered, but in 1967 the RJAF was also about to start acquiring F-104 Starfighters. In fact, when the Six Day War was about to break out two F-104As and two TF-104As were already at Amman IAP where they were used to familiarise RJAF personnel with them.

Jordanian aircraft were all left in colours as delivered. Hunters and Vampires wore the standard RAF camouflage patterns in Extra Dark Sea Grey & Dar Green over, and Silver underneath. National markings were applied in six positions.

- No 1 Sqn, Hunter F.Mk.6 & FR.Mk.6, Mafraq AB; most of the 12 Hunters originally delivered to the No. 1 Sqn RJAF have had the insignia of their unit applied on the forward fuselage. This consisted of a wolf-head on a white field, outlined in black, on a red-white checkered arrow; white codes were applied on the top of the fin and serials in white on rear fuselage. All aircraft were essentially equipped to the same standard as Indian F.Mk.66s. By the Six Day War the RJAF still had eleven of them in service. Originally delivered F.Mk.6s were:
- WW597 (RJAF 711/?)
- XE543 (RJAF 707/?)
- XE551 (RJAF 700/A)
- XE558 (RJAF 701/B)
- XE379 (RJAF 709/K)
- XF373 (RJAF 703/D)
- XF380 (RJAF 710/?)
- XF381 (RJAF 702/C)
- XF444 (RJAF 705/F)
- XF452 (RJAF 708/?)
- XF496 (RJAF 706/?)
- XF498 (RJAF 704/E)

In 1960-1961 also two FR.Mk.10s were supplied from RAF stock, and these two might have been the only Jordanian Hunters to survive the Six Day War; they were:
- XF426 (delivered as FR.Mk.10 from RAF stock, becoming 853/? with RJAF: this plane was probably the only of all the Jordanian Hunters that survived the Six Day War)
- XG262 (originally F.Mk.6, modified with a three-camera nose, becoming 852 with RJAF)

At some point also the Hunter FR.Mk.10 of unknown origin was delivered, serialled 712/N in RJAF service. This aircraft should have seen action in 1967, but its fate is unknown.


In RJAF service the aircraft mentioned above or seen on photographs were serialled as follows:
- 700/A, F.Mk.6,
- 701/B, F.Mk.6
- 702/C, F.Mk.6, flown by Flt.Lt. Saiful-Azam (PAF), on 5 June 1967, it probably had full No. 1 Sqn RJAF markings in the early 1960, when it survived a crash-landing, but was destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 703/D, F.Mk.6, fate unknown, probably destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 704/E, (ex XF498) fate unknown, probably destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 705/C, F.Mk.6, destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 705/F, fate unknown (perhaps one of aircraft supplied after 1967)
- 707/H, F.Mk.6, destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 709/K (ex XF379)
- 710/L, F.Mk.6, destroyed on 5 June 1967
- 712/L, FR.Mk.6/10,
- 752, reported destroyed at Mafraq on 5 June 1967; possibly an IrAF example forced to land there after morning raids against Israel.



- No 2 Sqn, Vampire FB.Mk.59 & T.Mk.55, Mafraq & Amman; the Vampires of this unit have also carried the unit insignia – a black eagle on a white circle outlined in black, with an arrow chequered in red and white (or in black and yellow, according to other sources) - on the forward fuselage; in addition the national insignia, carried on six positions, was also winged by fields chequered either in red and white or black and yellow. Two T.Mk.55 two-seaters were supplied from the RAF in the early 1950s, one of which was serialled 209 in RJAF. Nine or ten Vampire FB.Mk.59s were donated from the RAF in 1955, their original RAF serials being in the range between WX200 and WX260; their RJAF serials were F-600 thru F-609. The serials of seven Vampire FB.Mk.52s donated from Egypt in 1955 remain unknown.


- No. 3 Transport Squadron; Dove, Whirlwind, Amman

- No. 4 Helicopter Squadron; Alouette III, Amman

- No. 6 OCU; Hunter F.Mk.73 & FGA.9 – not much is known about this unit or ist insignia at the time of the Six Day War, except that it was equipped with Hunter F.Mk.73s all of which belonged to the second batch supplied to Jordan. Originally, these aircraft were actually intended to equip the No. 2 Squadron:
- XF415 (RJAF 802)
- XF417 (RJAF 810)
- XF423 (RJAF 803)
- XF518 (RJAF 809)
- XG132 (RJAF 804)
- XG137 (RJAF 813)
- XG159 (RJAF 717)
- XG171 (RJAF 808)
- XG187 (RJAF 811)
- XG257 (RJAF 812)
- XG267 (RJAF 805)
- XG268 (RJAF 806)
- XG269 (RJAF 807)

The only Hunter from this batch which serial is believed to be known should be 809/K. Its fate is unknown, but it was most likely destroyed on 5 June 1967.

The RJAF also received the following Hunter T.Mk.66B two-seaters (one newly-built, periodically leased, and two ex-Klu examples):
- G-APUX spent a year with No. 6 OCU as 800/P (carrying full RJAF markings), before being returned to Hawker-Siddeley
- ex-N-249, probably coded "714/B“ in RJAF, this aircraft survived the Six Day War and was later donated to Oman
N-283, probably "716/?", later donated to Oman.

All but four of Jordanian Hunters were destroyed in Israeli strikes on 5 June 1967: these four survivors were then sent to Iraq. Immediately after the war 12 new aircraft were purchased from the UK and some more temporarily loaned from Iraq before additional aircraft readied to Jordanian specifications followed in 1968-1971. To complete the story of Jordanian Hunters here also details about the examples supplied after the Six Day War.

Hunter F.Mk.6s and FGA.9s transferred from RAF and RSAF in 1967 and 1968:
- XF454 (RJAF 816)
- XF514 (RJAF 718)
- XG298 (RJAF 826)
- YK150 (RJAF 821/Q)

Hunter F.Mk.73 (all former F.Mk.6s, re-built to Jordanian standard and basically similar to FGA.9, they were used to re-establish the No. 2 Squadron RJAF in 1968):
- XE603 (RJAF 832)
- XE645 (RJAF 827)
- XE655 (RJAF 817)
- XF520 (RJAF 814)
- XG137
- XG159
- XG231
- XG255 (RJAF 825, seen at Malta, in July 1972)
- XK150 (RJAF 815)

Hunter F.Mk.74A (all newly-built, originally as F.Mk.6, upgraded to the same standard as F.Mk.73s and delivered in 1969):
- XF389 (RJAF 829)
- XG234 (RJAF 830)
- XG237 (RJAF 828/I, arrived in Jordan in July 1969)
- XJ645 (RJAF 831)

Hunter F.Mk.74A (additional batch of former F.Mk.4s, rebuilt into F.Mk.74As, supplied in 1971):
- WV325 (RJAF 846)
- WV408 (RJAF 845)
- XF364 (RJAF 843)
- XF936 (RJAF 844)
- XF952 (RJAF 848)
- XF968 (RJAF 847)
- XF987
- N-268 (ex-KLu)

Hunter F.Mk.73B (former F.Mk.4s, upgraded to F.Mk.73 standard):
- WV401 (RJAF 849)
- XF979 (RJAF 850)
- N-264 (ex-KLu, RJAF 840)
- N-279 (ex-KLu, RJAF 841)

Hunter T.Mk.7:
- XL605 (RJAF 836)
- XL620 (RJAF 835)

- No. 9 Sqn, F-104A & TF-104A – in organization; Jordanian Starfighters were left in bare metall overall, with the usual anti-glare pannel in Dark Green in front of the nose, and the radome in white; black serials were applied on the front fuselage, and a black code on the top of the fin.

FAL (Force Aérienne Libanaise)

The Lebanese have got their first six ex-RAF Hunter F.Mk.6s already in 1958, the aircraft being paid for by the USA, and supplied in the aftermath of the US intervention in the country, which came in response to viollent protests against the government in Beirut.

In 1964 three two-seat trainers readied to the Indian T.Mk.66 standard – and correspondingly designated T.Mk.66Cs – were ordered as well as four examples built to FGA.9 standard, but designated F.Mk.70 for export. All these aircraft were former Belgian fighters, and they were painted in the Extra Dark Sea Grey/Dark Green over, Silver underneath, with national markings in six positions and codes and serials in black on the rear fuselage (code was applied in Latin characters, and serial numbers in Persian characters):

- ? Sqn; Hunter F.Mk.6 (former XE534, XE598, XF377, XF461, XF495, and XG167; FAL serials L-170 thru L-175), F.Mk.70s (former IF-86, IF-96, IF-101, and IF-129; FAL serials L-176 thru L-179), and T.Mk.66C (former F.Mk.6s IF-34, IF-60, and IF-112; FAL serials L-280, L-281, and L-282), based at Rayak.

- ? Sqn; Vampire FB.Mk.52; aluminium overall, black codes in Arabic and Persian characters on the boom, behind the national markings: L155

- ? Sqn; SA.316C Alouette III, Rayak

Dr. Yahia Al Shaer

The Syrian Arab Air Force was potentially the second most important Israeli opponent in 1967. In practice, this was not entirely the case: instead the SyAAF, partially disorganized and poorly led, was thrown out of the battle without having sustained as heavy losses as Jordan or Egypt, and there is still no clear explanation for this forthcomming from Damascus.

In the time-frame between 1956 and 1967 the SyAAF was developing very differently. In 1956 the SyAAF had only two operational units, one equipped with Meteor F.Mk.4s, and another with survivors of some 20 Spitfire F.Mk.22s supplied from the UK in the early 1950s. Out of 20 MiG-15s and six MiG-15UTIs that were delivered for Syria to Egypt shortly before the Suez Crisis, only four survived the Anglo-French onslaught. By the end of 1956 a program of intensive modernization of the Air Force was started and a total of 60 MiG-17Fs, together with ten Yak-11s, ten Yak-18s, six Il-14s, and ten Mi-4s. The first 12 MiG-17s arrived in January 1957. Simultaneously, a group of 20 Syrian pilots was sent to the USSR and 18 to Poland for conversion training. Additional pilots were trained in Syria by Soviet instructors. The remaining aircraft were delivered by the end of the same year, however, the SyAAF was short of pilots for them all, and a whole squadron was therefore manned by the Egyptians. As the number of qualified pilots increased, in 1958 a total of three MiG-17-units became operational, and the fourth unit – a night-fighter squadron – was then formed and equipped with newly-delivered MiG-17PFs. By the end of the same year an Air College and the Aeronautical Technical Institute – the future Air Academy – were founded at Minakh AB, near Hallab (Aleppo), where up to 30 new pilots and a similar number of technicians were trained annually, starting on Yak-18s, via Yak-11s, to MiG-15UTIs, and from 1965 on the first of over 80 L-29s eventually acquired by the SyAAF over the next few years.

In 1958 Syria started receiving 40 MiG-19S supersonic fighters, and the year later 30 additional MiG-15s and the first two Il-28 bombers. Consequently, by May 1961 the SyAAF boasted an inventory of 75 MiG-15bis/MiG-17F aircraft in six squadrons. However, this number was soon to decrease considerably: by January 1964 the number of MiG-15s and MiG-17s fell to only 50, just for example, then there were numerous accidents while other aircraft were unserviceable for lack of spares or maintenance problems. The fact was, namely, that on one side the SyAAF lacked sufficient trained personnel, and on the other that a good part of SyAAF officers were rather interested in the politics than in flying. Frequent purges of officers considered “disloyal” to each new regime caused additional problems, and the Syrians were therefore very slow to train a new generation of fighter pilots, especially as these were also not trained as aggressively as their Israeli counterparts.

Nevertheless, by 1962 four additional Il-28 bombers were delivered, and a Light Bomber Squadron established. Meanwhile also a Transport Squadron was in operation, having six each of C-47 and Il-14 aircraft. By now it became clear that the introduction of the MiG-19 in SyAAF service failed, and confronted with technical difficulties, the Syrians eventually transfered the 30 surviving MiG-19s to Egypt, in 1965, even if the aircraft remained in Syria until October 1975.

The first out of eventual 34 MiG-21F-13s reached Syria actually before any were delivered to Egypt, and were soon in service with two units. Due to subsequent political unrests in the country, however, the overal condition of the SyAAF was not to improve: by 1965 the Syrians had only a total of 30 MiG-15s and MiG-17s left, only four Il-28s and 30 MiG-21s, and the readiness of the air force was so low, that despite all the aircraft barely three squadrons could be considered operational, two of which were flying MiG-15s and MiG-17s. Therefore, it was still ultimately important for the air defence of Syria to have two Egyptian MiG-19 units based at Dmeyr AB, even if new orders for 39 MiG-21PFs, issued in 1966, were to considerably reinforce the SyAAF.

Soviet, Czech, and East German advisors were present in Syria time and again in the 1960s. One of the Soviet instructors was Grigory Neljubov. Member of the Soviet cosmonaut-team, together with Gagarin and Titov, Neljubov was distanced from the project after appearing at his base in drunken condition and picking a fight with a guard: due to his refusal to apologise the affair was made official and public, and Neljubov sent to work as advisor in Syria, before he committed a suicide, in 1966. The influence of foreign instructors changed as the regimes in Damascus changed, however, only Egyptians remaining almost permanently influential. Several of their officers were instrumental in organizing and training Syrian interceptor units. Their impact on the operational capabilities of Syrian MiG-21 units remains unclar, but it is certain that they were often working especially with MiG-17-units.

Exact details about the camouflage colours, serials and markings of Syrian aircraft in 1967 are very scarce. What is known is given bellow, but it seems that the SyAAF was somewhat more conscious about camouflaging their aircraft, then at least few Syrian fighters – foremost the Egyptian-flown MiG-19s – should have been camouflaged already at the time.

In June 1967 the SyAAF boasted the strength of 35 MiG-15s and MiG-17s in three squadrons, 60 MiG-21F-13s and MiG-21PFs in four squadrons, and only two Il-28s in a sole light bomber unit.

- No. 1 Fighter Squadron, MiG-21F-13, Tsaikal, Marj Real; bare metal overall, black serial on the forward fuselage: 1073, 2540 etc.

This exact look of this early Syrian MiG-21F-13 remains unconfirmed, but it supposedly was seen in the national markings shown here, known to have been used by SyAAF aircraft from 1961 until 1963. Subsequently, red replaced the green fields on the national colours, while the stars became green instead of red.

- No. 3 Night Fighter Squadron, MiG-17PF

- No. 7 Sqn, MiG-21PF (formerly MiG-19s), Tsaikal, T.4

- No. 8 Fighter Squadron, MiG-17F; bare metal overall, black serial in three digits on the top of the fin, the last two repeated large on the forward fuselage: 939/39, 982/82 etc.


- No. 10 Fighter Squadron, MiG-17F and MiG-21, Dmeyr; in the process of conversion to MiG-21

- No. 12 Fighter Squadron, MiG-15bis and MiG-21, Dmeyr; in the process of conversion to MiG-21

- No. 22 Transport Squadron, Il-14, C-47, Damascus, Almezzeh;

- No. 54 Fighter Squadron, MiG-21PF, base unknown, in the process of establishment

- No. 77 Fighter Squadron, MiG-19S; base unknown;
This was the second Syrian unit known to have operated MiG-19s. By 1967 all the Syrian MiG-19s should have been under Egyptian control. Nevertheless, there are reports about actions of SyAAF MiG-19-pilots during the Six Day War, consequently the exact status of this unit remains unknown. Syrian MiG-19s might have been the first Arab supersonic fighters to have been camouflaged, the only pictorial evidence from the times around the Six Day War indicating that they were painted Dark Olive and Dark Sand or Light Earth on upper surfaces, and Light Blue under. Serials were applied in black on the forward fuselage, possibly also in black on the top of the fin: 1103, 1118, 1138

- No. ?? Light Bomber Squadron, 2 Il-28, T.4 AB

- No. ?? Helicopter Squadron, Mi-4, Damascus, Almezzeh

The SyAAF losses during the Six Day War were heavy, but – measured on the total number of available aircraft – not as heavy as those of the Egyptian or Jordanian air forces. Known to have been lost are:
- 33 MiG-21s (including 8 in air-to-air combat)
- 23 MiG-17s and MiG-15s (3 in air-to-air combat)
- an unknown number of MiG-19s (none in airto-air combat)
- 2 Il-28s
- 3 Mi-4s
Total: 61 aircraft


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