Lockheed Martin gave Israel its first C-130J Super Hercules cargo jet in a ceremony held on Wednesday at the company’s production center in Marietta, Georgia.
The IAF has chosen to call the C-130J “Shimshon.” Shimshon is Hebrew for Samson, who was a judge and leader for the people of Israel. He mother called him Shimshon, derived from the Hebrew word for sun, because she felt he was destined to be as bright and mighty as the sun and would deliver the Israelites from their enemies.
“Israel’s new C-130J builds on the tradition of its predecessors and offers the IAF unique capabilities that are not only proven, but without equal,” Vice President and General Manager of C-130 programs at Lockheed Martin George Shultz said. “With its glass cockpit and modern digital avionics, the C-130J has proven it performs in all environments: hot, cold, dirt and sand. Shimshon will serve the IAF as the C-130 always has — anywhere, anytime.”
The Samson Option is the name that some military analysts have given to Israel’s hypothetical deterrence strategy of massive retaliation with nuclear weapons as a “last resort” against nations whose military attacks threaten its existence.
Commentators also have employed the term to refer to situations where non-nuclear, non-Israeli actors, have threatened conventional weapons retaliation. Two examples have been given: Yassir Arafat and Hezbollah.
The name is a reference to biblical character Samson who pushed apart the pillars of a Philistine temple, bringing down the roof and killing himself and thousands of Philistines who had captured him, crying out “God ‘Let me die with the Philistines!'” (Judges 16:30).
IDF deploys Iron Dome near Haifa amid heightened tensions in North
IDF Chief of Staff Lt.- Gen. Benny Gantz told pilots receiving their wings at the Hatzerim Air Base Thursday, “The region is shaking, from south to north. Syria is hemorrhaging blood, and in Lebanon, the fire has begun to catch the edge of Nasrallah’s robe. In the face of this changing reality, we must be prepared, coordinated and alert, more than ever. You, the graduates, have from now on an inseparable part in safeguarding our readiness against these challenges.”