The Airlines That Abandoned Israel

Take a look at Ben Gurion airport’s flight departures board. A number of airlines, who make handsome profits out of flying passengers in and out of Israel, are now conspicuously absent.

There are some notable exceptions like Aero Mexico, Aerolineas Argentinas, Air France, Air Portugal, Jetblue Airways, Quantas, Emirates and Etihad, but where are all the other carriers?

Nearly all of the European airlines would appear to be missing from British to Austrian Airlines, from Lufthansa to Swiss, from Easyjet to Italy’s ITA Airways.

Companies like Turkish and Pegasus airlines, which normally feature prominently on the arrivals and departures boards are noticeably absent. Where is Delta, which according to their website operates no less than 18 flights per day from Tel Aviv to New York, many through European cities?

To its credit Iberia has two flights today. Air France is operating as are American Airlines and United.

There are now relatively few Hamas rockets falling on Israel and fortunately none has hit Ben Gurion airport. In any event, most flights are on the ground for only a little over an hour to deplane, clean up and take on passengers, fuel and food, so why have so many companies deserted us?

It is even reported to his credit that President Biden is considering making a flying visit to Israel to offer moral support to our country as we go to war, so it cannot be that dangerous!

One would have hoped that, following this war, customers will boycott those airlines that abandoned Israel in her time of need, but that is probably wishful thinking.

About the Author
Made aliyah from the UK in 1985, am a former president of the Israel Council of Reform Rabbis and am currently rabbi of Kehilat Yonatan in Hod Hasharon, Israel.