Middle East It Turned Out to Be a Mistake

An airborne Israeli interception fails to catch big fish

Ever since Palestinian terrorists staged attacks last Dec. 27 at Rome and Vienna airports against the Israeli airline El Al, it was inevitable that the Israelis would respond. Last week they apparently thought they had their + chance. As a Libyan Gulfstream II executive jet carrying nine passengers and three crewmen passed the southeastern coast of Cyprus on its way to Damascus, two Israeli fighter jets intercepted the aircraft and ordered the pilot to proceed to Ramat David air force base, near Haifa.

Israeli authorities presumably believed they had caught a big fish: George Habash of the Popular Front for the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!