THE WORLD’S PREMIER AVIATION ARTIST PAYS TRIBUTE TO THE F-4 PHANTOMS OF THE ISRAELI AIR FORCEYom Kippur – the holiest day of the Jewish year – and on that day in 1973 Israel unexpectedly found itself under attack from two of its Arab neighbors. Suddenly the survival of the nation was at stake.
At 1400 hours on Saturday 6 October 1973 thousands of Egyptian troops swarmed across the Suez Canal while in the north, at precisely the same time, nearly 1,500 Syrian tanks thrust west towards Israel. In the air, Egyptian and Syrian air forces struck in a single, co-ordinated assault hitting the Israeli’s anti-aircraft defenses and hoping to deliver a fatal blow.
Largely unprepared, Israel reeled. However within hours its forces began a ferocious battle to stem the enemy's advance. As Israeli tanks and infantry rushed to hold the front line, overhead Israeli Air Force jets fought a heroic battle to regain control of the skies.
Robert Taylor’s powerful and dramatic painting depicts one such strike that took place on 14 October 1973 when Israeli F-4 Phantom fighter-bombers made simultaneous strikes against the Egyptian air bases at Mansoura and Tanta north of Cairo and the ensuing air battle was so intense that at one point more than 180 fighter aircraft were involved. Despite bitter opposition from Egyptian MiG-21s as well as Libyan Mirage 5s, the successful IAF missions eliminated much of the effectiveness of the Egyptian Air Force and its Libyan allies.
Rarely have so many Phantom crews gathered together to sign a print edition and this powerful painting serves as a lasting tribute to all IAF Aircrew that flew the F-4 Phantom with such bravery and distinction during many conflicts to defend Israeli territory.
The prints were signed in Israel over the last year making this one of the publisher's most ambitious projects to date, and has brought together no less than TWENTY TWO Israeli Phantom pilots and navigators to autograph this unique edition, including some of the foremost Phantom Aces of all time.Signatures:THE PILOTSBrigadier General AMIR NACHUMI – scored 14 victories in total, 7 in the F-4 and 7 in the F-16.
Brigadier General SHLOMO EGOZY – 10 victories, 2 in the Mirage and 8 in the F-4, Israel’s highest-scoring F-4 ace.
Colonel EITAN PELED – he was credited with at least 6 victories, all in the Phantom
Major General AVIHU BEN-NUN – 4 victories, 2 in the F-4 and 2 in the Mirage, became the Commanding Officer of the IAF.
Brigadier General YORAM AGMON – 6 victories, 4 in the Phantom and 2 in the Mirage, including the first ever Mirage kill.
Colonel NAFTALI MAIMON – he scored 3 victories all in the Phantom.
Brigadier General YOEL FELDSHO – 4 victories, 1 in the F-4 and 3 in the F-15.
Brigadier General SHAMUEL BEN-ROM – credited with at least 2 victories in the F-4.
Brigadier General URI BAKAL – he was forced to eject from his F-4 after suffering a direct hit hit.
Brigadier General ZVI KANOR – he was credited with at least 1 victory in the Phantom.
Colonel AMNON GURION – officially credited with 2 victories in the F-4.
Major MEIR SHANI – scored at least 2 victories in the Phantom.
Colonel SHMUEL GORDON – he scored at least 1 victory while flying the Phantom.
Colonel DANI SHAKI – scored 3 victories in the Phantom.
Lieutenant General DANI HALOTZ – 3 victories in the F-4, becoming the IAF Commanding Officer and later Army Chief of Staff.
Brigadier General ITZCHAK AMITAY – scored 5 victories in the Phantom
Lieutenant Colonel YAIR DAVID – while flying the F-4 he was shot down but recovered in a daring Combat Search and Rescue mission.
Brigadier General MOSHE BARTOV – credited with at least 1 victory flying the Phantom.
Brigadier General ABRAHAM ASHAEL – scored at least 2 victories in the F-4 before becoming a POW.
Colonel YEHOAR GAL – 2 victories in the F-4, with Pilots EITAN PELED and DANI HALOTZ.
Colonel ELI TOVEL – while flying the F-4 he ejected having been shot down but was later recovered.
Lieutenant Colonel ACHIKAR EYAL – scored 1 victory which was the Phantom’s first aerial kill for the IAF.