Retired Lieutenant Colonel Ze'ev Raz is best known for leading the attack on the Osirak nuclear plant in Iraq during the summer of 1981. The daring mission, which at the time sparked outrage, is now seen as an immense success.

Leading the way was F-16 squadron commander Ze'ev Raz. His mission? Destroy a secret nuclear weapons plant in Iraq that could threaten the very existence of his homeland. This life-long pilot recalls the inner workings of the mission that brought even more fear into the hearts of Israel's enemies.



"We were quite surprised that Iraq didn't react, didn't take off or fire any missiles to us," he says in this exclusive video. "We couldn't understand how they did not see us.  They could see us on the radar scopes at least 15min before the bombing. It was disappointing, to play, to do their part and then our victory would've been larger, bigger, more realistic. King Hussein saw us one minute off the coast to South Arabia flying east, they saw us…and he reported. They did nothing with this information. They did not understand the purpose of his report, and he was the king! We were very lucky."

Raz also reminisces about his flying days and tells us he still sees fighter planes when he closes his eyes each night.

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"When I dream about flying, I dream about the phantoms," he says.

After retiring from the Israel Air Force, Raz became commander of the IAF’s flight school as well as working in the area of development in Israel’s military aeronautics industry.

"A fighter pilot dies twice and its true, when you stop flying fighters, its the first time you die."

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