Photography by Ian L. Sitren

Israel At 72 – “Above And Beyond”

Today marks the 72nd Anniversary of Israel Independence Day. Celebrated on the anniversary of the establishment of the State of Israel, according to the Hebrew calendar, on the 5th day of the month of Iyar.

“Throughout their long history, the yearning to return to the Land of Israel has been the focus of Jewish life. Independence Day is a celebration of the renewal of the Jewish state in the land where the Jewish people began to develop its distinctive religion and culture some 4,000 years ago.” – Israeli Ministry Of Foreign Affairs

“Above And Beyond” is an extraordinary documentary of the beginnings of what was to become the Israeli Air Force. It is an amazing story.

“In 1948, just three years after the liberation of Nazi death camps, a group of Jewish American pilots answered a call for help. In secret and at great personal risk, they smuggled planes out of the U.S., trained behind the Iron Curtain in Czechoslovakia and flew for Israel in its War of Independence.”

“Above And Beyond” brings together new interviews with the pilots, as well as stunning aerial footage, to present a fascinating, little-known tale filled with heart, heroism and high-flying chutzpah. The film follows the pilots on their circuitous route from the United States—where they met and trained in secret and struggled to stay two steps ahead of the FBI—to Panama, Italy and Czechoslovakia, where they flew versions of the very Nazi planes they had tried to shoot down in World War II.”

You may watch it in it’s entirely on YouTube at https://youtu.be/ZpKhwi4L64o

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