1960-Israel Begins Assembly of its First Jet
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ISRAEL BEGINS ASSEMBLY OF ITS FIRST JET Assembly of this French training jet marked an important technological step for the developing Israeli aircraft industry.
In 1960, Israel began assembling the French designed Fouga-Magister jet. The Fouga was assembled by Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), which had been established after the War of Independence by Al Schwimmer, an American immigrant. Israel Aircraft Industries was initially founded as a facility to repair and overhaul aircraft. After producing the Fouga, IAI went on to design the Arava light aircraft, the Astra business jet, the Kfir jet fighter, and finally, the Lavi; a fully Israeli fighter plane whose production was canceled due to political pressures in 1987