Defense What Price Sky-High Glory?

Israel's embattled Lavi warplane points up a global dilemma

Top Israeli generals would gladly kill it, and so would Defense Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Yet rising criticism and soaring costs have so far failed to force Israel's Lavi jet fighter program off course. The time has come, however, when Jerusalem must decide whether to funnel more billions into the troubled Lavi (Hebrew for lion) or scrap a warplane that has become a symbol of national pride and a key source of jobs. The need to make that choice has triggered a vitriolic debate in which military and economic issues have frequently given way to pure emotion. "The real question," shouted Knesset...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

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