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Monday, February 12, 2018

PREPARING FOR WAR IN THE NORTH, ISRAEL BOOSTS AIR DEFENSES

Israel has boosted its air defense in the North following a significant confrontation between the Jewish state, Syria and Iran that led to the loss of an F-16i fighter jet.

While the army refused to comment on the reports, witnesses reported seeing a convoy of missile-defense batteries heading north near the Israeli-Arab city of Baka al-Gharbiya. Other witnesses posted photos of several trucks carrying the batteries on central highways in northern Israel.

Israel’s air defenses currently include the Iron Dome, designed to shoot down short-range rockets; the Arrow system, which intercepts ballistic missiles outside of the Earth’s atmosphere; and the David’s Sling missile-defense system, which is designed to intercept tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets and cruise missiles fired from ranges of between 40 km to 300 km.

Israel also has Patriot-missile batteries stationed in the North and has used them to intercept drones infiltrating into Israeli airspace from Syria. In September, an Iranian-built unmanned aerial vehicle breached the “Bravo line” that marks the Syrian demilitarized zone, and was intercepted by an Israeli Patriot anti-ballistic missile launched from a station near the northern city of Safed.

The first use of the Arrow system was in April when it was launched to intercept three surface-to-air missiles fired toward IAF jets by Syrian-regime air defense.

On Saturday, an Iranian drone, which took off from Syria’s T4 airbase in northern Homs province, flew through Jordanian territory before it infiltrated into Israel. It flew for about a minute and a half in the northern Jordan Valley before it was shot down by a helicopter flown by Lt.-Col. “L.”, commander of the 113 Squadron. READ MORE