The Israel Air Force will participate in a wide-ranging international exercise in the next few months, as part of a “coalition” with air crews from several other countries, Haaretz has learned.

Dubbed Blue Flag, the Israel-led simulated combat exercise will be a follow-up to a similar exercise two years ago, with the participation of the United States, Italian and Greek air forces, as well as Israel. The purpose of that exercise was to rehearse a scenario involving “a high-intensity confrontation against a political entity with a strong army” – a goal set by the Israel Air Force in 2013.

This year’s exercise will be based on a similar scenario and is expected to involve crews from a number of countries, including the U.S. Air Force. An increased number of countries are expected to participate in the exercise as observers. Although observer countries will not take part in the the operational aspects of the exercise, including sorties, they will participate in the debriefing process and will be able to study joint aerial operations involving a number of countries. […]