Combat Aircraft from the German, Italian and Israeli Air Force Joined RAF and USAF Assets For Ex. Cobra Warrior 2019

An F-15C taxies at RAF Waddington during Ex. Cobra Warrior 2019. (All images: Author).

Cobra Warrior 2019 at RAF Waddington, UK.

Between Sept. 1 and Sept. 20 the large international exercise Cobra Warrior 2019 took place in UK airspace.

Exercise Cobra Warrior is an annual exercise and is the RAFs premier tactical training event, designed to conclude the training of the Qualified Weapons Instructor, Qualified Multi-engine Tactics Instructor, QWI Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance and Qualified Space Instructor Course students. The exercise developed the tactical leadership skills of aircrew and supporting elements within a complex air environment.

A German Air Force EF-2000.

Aircraft from the German, Italian and Israeli Air Forces arrived at the end of August at RAF Waddington to participate in Exercise Cobra Warrior and they joined aircraft from the Royal Air Force (flying from RAF Marham and Coningsby) and the United States Air Force (flying from RAF Lakenheath) in high intensity large force tactical training during the 20-day exercise. The flying days were plannend on Monday, Wednesday and Friday with two missions each day and in between familiarisation flights and basic flying took place.

An Italian F-2000A from the 37° Stormo based in Trapani.
A Typhoon with the 4° Stormo from Grosseto AB.

For the Israelis it was the first time they participated and from Tel Nof Airbase they sent three F-15C and four F-15D ‘Baz’ from the 106th Squadron to the UK. The flights were supported by KC-707 tanker aircraft and several C-130 cargo aircraft.

Israeli Air Force F-15 Baz on the break.
An Israeli F-15D on final at RAF Waddington.
Close up view on the cockpit of the IAF F-15D.

Brig.-Gen. Amnon Ein-Dar, the Head of the Training and Doctrine Directorate in the Israeli Air Force, told the press that the drill was important for Israel in order to strengthen diplomatic ties and increase tactical advantages with allied forces. “It’s an important drill because we had a wonderful opportunity to take our teams and have them train in areas where they are not used to, something which is very important for war,” he said, adding that Israeli pilots “had the opportunity to learn from other air forces with a very high level of performance which gives us the opportunity to send our people to see their planning process and how they train and fight in the air in order to get the highest quality training.”

This RAF Sentinel supported the exercise Cobra Warrior 2019.

Cobra Warrior 2019 fighter aircraft flying from RAF Waddington:

EF2000s Luftwaffe:  30+47, 30+50, 30+51, 30+56, 30+64, 30+65,

                                     30+73, 30+74, 30+88, 31+20 (all JG73)

F-2000s A.M.:      MM7311/4-55 (4 Stormo/IX Gruppo)

                               MM7552/36-55, MM7353/36-56 (36 Stormo / 12 Gruppo)

                               MM7321/37-12 (37 Stormo / 18 Gruppo)

F-15C IAF:            583, 810, 818 (all 106 Squadron)

F-15D IAF:             706, 715, 733, 980 (all 106 Squadron)

About Edwin Schimmel
Edwin Schimmel is a freelance photographer based near Utrecht city in The Netherlands. His first article and photo publications date back to the mid 90’s in Dutch aviation magazines like Onze Luchtmacht and De Vliegende Hollander. Later on he also got published in international aviation magazines like Air Forces Monthly and Combat Aircraft. Since 2000 he works in the Air Traffic Control at the Royal Netherlands Air Force. He reported from many bases around Europe but also in the US and Japan.