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F-16 Engines Stolen From Israeli Air Base 346

Hugh Pickens writes "Defense Tech reports that several F-16 engines weighing 3,700 pounds each have been stolen from a base in a central part of the country. Israeli officials played down the loss, saying the engines were old or retired and likely stolen for scrap. U.S. security and aviation experts contacted were not so dismissive of the missing engines and said that some countries would see value in having them and taking them apart. '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,' says Richard Aboulafia, noting that modern technology engine design remains 'a black art' and that competitors would love the opportunity to study them. This is not the first time jet engines have gone missing. In June 2011, Israel reported the loss of eight F-15 and F-16 fighter engines from a base at Tel Nof near Jerusalem when investigators found the engines had been taken away on large trucks, prompting speculation that the thieves had help from inside the base. In 2009, two F-5 engines were stolen from an airbase in Malaysia, tracked to Argentina and ultimately located in Uruguay."
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F-16 Engines Stolen From Israeli Air Base

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  • Building Supplies (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:08PM (#42237229)

    Those new settlements in the West Bank have to be built out of something.

  • Again. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rex.clts ( 2791393 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:11PM (#42237253)
    And this is why we shouldn't be giving the Israelis our military technology.
  • Prime suspects (Score:1, Insightful)

    by __aaltlg1547 ( 2541114 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:23PM (#42237325)
    The prime suspects are the Israelis themselves. They'd love to get into the fighter-aircraft business or even the jet engine business. Seriously, this is Israel, the penultimate security state. You don't get stolen military hardware out of Israel unless the government knows about it.
  • Re:Again. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:24PM (#42237329)

    Could not agree more.
    They have lots of money and lots of smart people.
    Glad to help when we can but right now we are broke.
    You should be able to get by in the word without our help till we get back on our feet.
    Otherwise, what have you been doing with the 3 billion we send a year?

  • Re:Stolen to order (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:27PM (#42237355)

    If we're so worried about China getting our jet engine tech (and we probably should be), then why is GE allowed to be in a joint Chinese venture to make engines?

    China and Iran don't need any fancy undercover operations - we'll happily shoot ourselves in the foot if it's called business.

  • Re:Prime suspects (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @07:30PM (#42237377)

    Let me get this straight. They have the engines, and can copy them at will. But they decided to steal the engines from themselves so they can copy them. I see. You, my friend, should cut down on the weed. You and the imbecile that modded you up.

  • by jittles ( 1613415 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:01PM (#42237575)

    Dear Editors:

    Thank you for putting a WikiLeaks link in the story summary. I know I could have hovered over it with the mouse cursor and seen where it linked to, but I was expecting an actual news story and not WikiLeaks. You do realize that anyone who works in the Defense Industry, military, or other US Government contracting positions could lose their job over clicking that, right? It's not likely that they would be "caught" so to speak, but I thought this was a news aggregator, and would, you know, have links to the news. Thankfully I am no longer in the defense industry, and do not have to worry about losing my job.

    For those of you who are about to freak out on the US Government's rules realize this: When you do work in certain areas you agree to not seek out information that is covered by a "Need to Know." The US Government has specifically said that those who work in sensitive areas are not to visit WikiLeaks, and have warned all employees and contractors. The reason is pretty simple. If you explicitly agree not to do something as a condition of employment, and you do it anyway, then you probably aren't a very trustworthy person. And anyway, I think that a proper news story would have been more informative and read better than a diplomatic cable, or whatever that document was.

  • Re:Prime suspects (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:13PM (#42237663)

    You're a fucking moron, but that's to be expected from someone with your high /. ID. My guess it that is reality you are a sub-25 burger flipper who "hacks" on his PC in mom's basement between masturbating to underage girls.

  • please clarify (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:39PM (#42237797)

    Why's that? Because that technology might make it to a country like Iran? ummm... We have given a HUGE amount of high-tech weaponry (including jets) to Egypt over the years and THAT place is now run by the Muslim Brotherhood which has begun cozying-up to some of the worst governments on Earth (including Iran). Israel is not the only country to let this happen... during the cold war, a Japanese firm intentionally transferred American nuclear submarine propeller technology directly to Russia, which resulted in the American taxpayer spending BILLIONS of new dollars to improve our ability to detect the newer quieter Russian subs and to make ours even more quiet.

    So... is it that you oppose helping Egypt and Saudi Arabia and others (anybody who might let our tech slip out to our enemies) as well, OR are you just using this incident to disguise a personal predisposition for Jew-hating?

    Muslims have huge swaths of land and many nations, rich with natural resources. The Jews (who have repeatedly faced threats and actual attempts of genocide) have only one tiny country, and it seems to be on the only middle-eastern soil that's not floating on oil (smile) so it's always interesting to see the warped and evil mindset of the irrational freaks who want to eliminate them. I'm not Jewish... I'm just a rational human who is fascinated by the freakish irrational behavior of Jew haters... it seems like every evil person on Earth hates Jews, even if they've never met one...

  • by Isaac Remuant ( 1891806 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:48PM (#42237849)

    I think that this reflects a problem on those organizations. Not Slashdot.

    My advice, come up with a wikileaks blocker and use it. Why deprive ANYONE else of a link just because?

    Another thing. If you're at work, why browse slashdot at work? :P If you're at home, why is it that your employers control what you can or can not read in your house? It's public info.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:49PM (#42237857)

    Even if the US used NO oil at all, we'd still be all entangled in the middle east... because we have many allies who are (and will be for many decades) fully dependent upon that oil. We could be sitting happily in the US with our own oil, coal, nuclear, wind, hydro, solar, etc energy and yet our economy could crash because our allies and trading partners crash in response to somebody like Iran choking-off middle east oil. Even if our allies in Europe got off oil from the middle east and instead got it from Russia, they'd leave themselves vulnerable to Russian blackmail and without a readily-available supply of middle east oil as a backup things would still be a mess. Our Asian allies need it. Even China, not an "ally" but certainly a trading partner, is becoming more-dependent upon middle-east oil (one reason they will feel increasingly driven to build-up a blue water navy) and will therefore make Americans worry about the region even if we do not directly use its oil. Quite simply, middle east oil is a vital part of world markets no matter how much or how little the US uses.

  • by mjwx ( 966435 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @08:52PM (#42237877)

    A lot easier and cheaper to do R&D with a working prototype in hand. Big problem for the US. You can always have the best equipment, but you're also always helping your enemies to catch up.

    Why is everyone assuming they are stealing this technolgoy to copy it?

    The F15 and F16 engines are now 20 years old. You can buy the same level of technology from Russia or India these days. Even China has better engines based on Russian designs.

    Occams Razor says that these engines are worth more as replacements for older F15/16's that are owned by countries that cant get new engines/spares from the US or cant afford them (Iran is far from the only suspect here).

  • by Isaac Remuant ( 1891806 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @09:08PM (#42237997)

    My point is that
    Israel != Jews.
    USA != Christians.
    Saudi Arabia != Muslims.
    [Country] != [Majority Religion]

    You mentioning religion out of the blue when the previous poster said nothing only serves as flamebait.

  • Re:please clarify (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @09:10PM (#42238003)

    I'm not Jewish

    But you play an Israeli talking head on the Internets. So I'm guessing Republican?

    It's always hilarious to see Israel fanboys equate 'The United States should not be emptying our treasury on behalf of Israel' into 'ZOMG ANTI-SEMITISM!'

    Israel has nuclear weapons. Israel has a strong military. Israel has a damned good number of engineering and science folks, to boot.

    The fact is, citizens of the US should not be paying Israel's way. That's it. As for the rest - whatever. Personally, I don't give a damn if Israel launches a war of aggression and takes the whole of the Middle East. At least it'd stop our politicians from fucking about with puppet administrations. That's worked out so well for us in Iraq and Iran, after all.

  • Endemic Corruption (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MarkvW ( 1037596 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @09:21PM (#42238085)

    How your American tax dollars are spent by Israel.

  • by Isaac Remuant ( 1891806 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @09:51PM (#42238281)

    Rarely would someone say something like what the previous poster did without intending it as an insult against Jews.

    Exercise, let's replace Israel with Liberia []:

    And it wouldn't be the first time Liberia disappeared some foreign manufactured equipment to get it "off the books" only to come up with some derivative internal products later. In fact, they have concentrated on making major components [] for foreign purchased platforms for years, rather than building new platforms from scratch. Most of their tech is derivative work.

    It seems just as likely, given Liberia's apparent lack of concern over these thefts, that they know exactly where these engines are.

    "Most of everyone's tech is derivative. But somehow, it's only bad if the black people do it?"

    "Rarely would someone say something like what the previous poster did without intending it as an insult against black people."

    "And I find it interesting that you refuse a link between black people and Liberia, when Liberia was created specifically for the black people, and is officially a Black State" (This one is not really true but I hope it helps further prove my point that the linkage it's completely of your own doing. Not every Israeli is Jewish and not every Jew is Israeli.)

  • (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 09, 2012 @09:53PM (#42238301)

    You mean main stream media in general. Fox news is one of the few defending the other position, and it's one of the few that makes money. The others spew lies and half truths, and sway the nation into voting for more debt and government control.

  • Re:Stolen to order (Score:5, Insightful)

    by manu0601 ( 2221348 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @11:24PM (#42238867)

    If we're so worried about China getting our jet engine tech (and we probably should be), then why is GE allowed to be in a joint Chinese venture to make engines?

    Because as Lenin said: "Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them"

  • by dbIII ( 701233 ) on Sunday December 09, 2012 @11:27PM (#42238881)
    In 2000 there was a US Senate inquiry into how a classified targeting system in tanks was given to Israel, stolen by some criminals there, sold to China, then onsold to Iran. The government in Israel wasn't too happy about that stuff ending up in Iran either (especially since Iran gives away their obsolete rockets to people that keep shooting them at Israel).
    So it's not really about Israel, but instead some crooks that just happen to live there.
  • Re:Stolen to order (Score:3, Insightful)

    by The Grim Reefer ( 1162755 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @12:22AM (#42239161)

    So an Slashdot commenter thinks Iran is a neighbor of Israel? Your post should be scored interesting or funny.

    2. a person or thing that is near another. []

    Neighbor is a fairly nebulous term. I suppose it's relative too. For someone living in Jordan, no, they would probably not consider them to be neighbors with each other(Iran and Israel). However someone in Ohio may consider them to be. Just as the same person in Jordan may consider Ohio and Illinois regional neighbors.

  • Re:please clarify (Score:4, Insightful)

    by pitchpipe ( 708843 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @01:01AM (#42239361)

    OR are you just using this incident to disguise a personal predisposition for Jew-hating?

    We need to stop conflating not wanting the US to be Israel's bitch with Jew-hating. They are not the same thing. Maybe if we (the US) started making our commitment to their security contingent upon them making peace, they might start moving in that direction. Right now they act like they can do whatever they want, and we will still back them no matter what. This is actually the case, and it doesn't make sense.

    BTW, all forms of racism are born of ignorance, so don't think that I'm Jew hating. The world would be a lot worse off if we didn't have them contributing to our collective well being. I just want a rational US policy when it comes to Israel.

  • by deburg ( 838010 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @01:03AM (#42239375)
    Anyway, considering all the TLC that US has been treating Israel to, you'd think they (Israel) is from sort of protectorate (like Purta Rico) or favorite trading partner.

    Hence all the conspiracy theories I'd keep hearing about. Seriously, Illuminati? US Senate are all Jews? What the heck have my country mates been drinking?

  • Re:Again. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TapeCutter ( 624760 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @01:27AM (#42239473) Journal
    Actually do the research, most American military aid comes in the form of loan gaurentees. Last time I checked Israel was getting around $10B worth of loan gaurentees so that they could raise the money and spend it on US miltary goods. In other words what the US government do is provide a kind of insurance to the American companies in the case that whoever buys their stuff decides not to pay up. This is the "military industrial complex" that FDR warned you about before you were born.
  • (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @01:45AM (#42239563) Homepage Journal

    Faux Noise leads the way in divisiveness in this country. Some dirtbag who was chased out of Australia somehow managed to purchase news media in both the UK and the US, so that he could brainwash masses of zombies into attacking their fellow countrymen. Rupert Murdoch should be executed, along with his top henchmen here and in the UK. Hang them from the Verrazanos Narrows bridge, and let their bodies rot in the air.

    Let them serve as an example for all the liberals on the OTHER networks who are happy to promote the divisiveness. They are only little better. Maybe we should hang Hearst and the Turners beside Murdoch, just to be sure everyone gets the message.

  • Re:Stolen to order (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Arancaytar ( 966377 ) <> on Monday December 10, 2012 @02:39AM (#42239747) Homepage

    Using the definition of "can lob missiles at each other", most nations in the Middle East are each other's neighbours. The really psychotic kind.

  • (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The Master Control P ( 655590 ) <ejkeever@neDEBIA ... com minus distro> on Monday December 10, 2012 @04:30AM (#42240123)
    "The other position." Is that the one when they start talking about a person who's simultaneously a socialist fascist stalinist nazi, empty suit evil manipulative genius, god-hating atheist antichrist with an Angry Black Man for a pastor, who (despite being an empty suit) will surely crush America under social security administration tyranny with an iron fist after duping the entire American legal system into covering up his Kenyan past (despite having held no government position that would remotely give him such power at the time) but (despite being an evil genius) can't speak without a teleprompter, who's surely coming for your guns (And if anyone points out he hasn't made a single move to, it's proof he's planning to)...

    One would think that it's obvious that no one else defends this viewpoint because this viewpoint is manifestly insane, bringing to mind the delusional/hallucinating aspect of psychosis.
  • Rope and commies (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Monday December 10, 2012 @08:57AM (#42241137)

    Because as Lenin said: "Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them"

    And how well did that work out for Lenin do you think? It seems to me that the necks of the capitalist pigs are still quite intact.

The IQ of the group is the lowest IQ of a member of the group divided by the number of people in the group.