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Air Power in the Six-Day War

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In the aftermath of Israel's stunning victory over Egyptian, Jordanian and Syrian forces during the 1967 Six-Day War, accolades for the victory were often showered upon the Israeli Air Force (IAF). Indeed, many believed that it had been Israeli air power that had been the decisive element in the war by first eliminating the Arab air forces and then obliterating the Arab armies in turn. While the IAF did play an extremely important role in the fighting, it was not the decisive element of Israeli victory, and its impact was felt in very different ways from the common perception. Indeed, an appreciation of the true role of Israeli air power in the war reinforces both the importance of psychological factors in combat, and the ability of air forces to have a psychological impact disproportionate to their physical impact.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: The Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, USA

Publication date: June 1, 2005


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