F-16 Engines Stolen From Israel Defense Forces; An Inside Job?

By Danny Choy on December 10, 2012 11:42 AM EST

Eight F-16 jet engines were stolen from an Israel Air Force Base. Israel Defense Force suspects an inside job. [Photo: Creative Commons]
Eight F-16 jet engines were stolen from an Israel Air Force Base. Israel Defense Force suspects an inside job. [Photo: Creative Commons]

According to the Israel Defense Forces, a total of eight F-16 fighter jet engines were recently stolen from an Israel Air Force Base.

Like Us on Facebook

A very serious and very high profile crime, officials of the Israel Defense Force are concerned about the manner in which the crimes were conducted. Given that the elaborate heist involved the transport of eight Pratt & Whitney military engines, which weigh nearly 30,000 pounds in total (3,740 lb. each), Defense Force officials fear the crime is likely an inside job.

The engines seem to have been stolen over the span of a couple days but investigative officials have yet to find any sign of a breach. What's more disturbing, the specific motive of the military heist is unclear.

According to Defense Tech, the latest incident wasn't the first. For a second year, American fighter engines have been stolen from an Israeli base. During June 2011, eight F-15 and F-16 engines were missing from Tel Nof near Jerusalem.

On one hand, the Israel Defense Forces believe the F-16 engines will likely be sold for scraps as they belong to an older generation of jet technology and are on the tail end of their service life. However, engineers stress otherwise. According to Richard Aboulafia, the vice president of defense industry research corporation Teal Group, the intricacies of a fighter jet engine still remains a "black art" among competitors from other nations.

Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-220 engines, used in F-16 fighter aircraft [Pratt & Whitney]
Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-220 engines, used in F-16 fighter aircraft [Pratt & Whitney]

Aboulafia said, "They're still more modern than anything in the Iranian air force inventory, and they would even be helpful to China in their jet engine development."

Director of defense and intelligence think tank GlobalSecurity.org, John Pike, also adds that an old F-16 engine is still "better than anything the communist Chinese have."

How will the second incident of jet engine theft in two years affect the international relationship between the United states and Israel? Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Jack Miller says, "This is something you'll want to most likely talk to the Israelis about. Obviously we have had a longstanding relationship with the Israelis and we'll continue to."

The Israel Defense Forces has yet to reveal any leads on the investigation.

© 2012 iScience Times All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

Join the Conversation

Sponsored From Around the Web

    ZergNet
Follow iScience Times
us on facebook RSS
 
us on google
 
Most Popular
White Dwarf Star Magnifies Another Star’s Brightness: Einstein Thought It Couldn’t Be Observed
For Earth Day, NASA's 'Global Selfie' Campaign Seeks To Build Composite Image Of Our Ailing Planet
Stem Cell Nuclei's Rare Sponge-Like Properties Help Them Transition Into Specialized Cells
New Zealand Boaters Fight Off Voracious Fanworms That Hitchhike On Hulls, Threaten Seaport Aquatic Life
100 Hippos Flee From Flotilla Of 100 Crocs in Zambian River [PHOTOS]
INSIDE iScience Times
Do Dolphins Get High? BBC Cameras Catch Dolphins Chewing On Pufferfish Toxins
Do Dolphins Get High? BBC Cameras Catch Dolphins Chewing On Pufferfish Toxins
How Many Ways Can You Tie A Tie?
How Many Ways Can You Tie A Tie?
Ribbon Of Charged Particles At Solar System's Edge Acts Like A Wind Sock For Interstellar Magnetism
Ribbon Of Charged Particles At Solar System's Edge Acts Like A Wind Sock For Interstellar Magnetism
How to Turn Your Tap Water Faucet  Into a Coffee Spout [VIDEO]
How to Turn Your Tap Water Faucet Into a Coffee Spout [VIDEO]
Coolest Science Photos Of 2013: From Blobfish To Two-Headed Shark, Comet ISON To Mars Selfie
Coolest Science Photos Of 2013: From Blobfish To Two-Headed Shark, Comet ISON To Mars Selfie
Research Shows Cats Are Rude; Can Recognize Their Owners Voice But Choose Not To Respond
Research Shows Cats Are Rude; Can Recognize Their Owners Voice But Choose Not To Respond