Crossfire War – RAPID FIRE NEWS=TEHERAN – BEIRUT – DAMASCUS WATCH – West Asia – North – Northeast Africa Theatre: Israel Missile Defense Association Estimates Syria – Iran to Launch 250-300 Long Range Missiles at Israel in Next War – Guidance Systems Questionable – Israel Official States Terror – Smuggling Grounds for Pre-Emptive Strike
Night Watch: rfn=JERUSALEM – “How Many Missiles will be Fired from Iran-Syria-Lebanon Against Israel in the Next War?” was the subject of a lecture given by Major-General (res.) Eitan Ben Eliahu at the Israel Missile Defense Association (IMDA) (www.imda.org.il} a new link with Crossfire War. Haaretz reports General Eliahu headed the Israel Air Force (IAF) from 1996-2000 and in his lecture earlier this week he estimated Syria-Iran will launch 250-300 long range Shahab-Scud missiles at Israel in the next war. Eliahu estimated Hezbollah in Lebanon will be able to launch 5,000 short range missiles, an increase from the 4,200 they fired in 2006. Hezbollah does possess some longer range missiles which can hit Tel Aviv and no doubt they will be used as quickly as possible since the IAF will make destroying the longer range missiles their top priority whether they are fired from Lebanon-Syria-Iran. Eliahu expects the full scale fighting to last 20 days. [HAARETZ]
In the course of his discussion General Eliahu mentioned Israel operates under a security doctrine that does allow for An Initiated War (preventive strike) as in 1967 which was so successful the war lasted only six days and Israel was able to take the strategic Golan Heights, a Syrian obsession ever since and Damascus’ main motive for entering the war this year. He then said if an Initiated War is not possible then the doctrine provides for a Pre-Emptive Attack to disrupt the enemy’s preparation. The IAF attack on the Syrian nuclear base last September was an example. Eliahu then mentioned if war does result then Israel Defense Forces (IDF) must conduct a holding operation during which they must achieve Aerial Superiority. He probably realizes if/when Israel does conduct a pre-emptive attack on Iran, for disruptive purposes, it would mean full scale war, beyond the serious flare ups of the past two years which did not yet lead to Israel’s offensive into Gaza.
Eliahu stated Israel should expect the next war to require action on one to three fronts and in order to achieve victory the IDF must crush the enemy on one of the fronts, which would be either Hezbollah in Lebanon or Syria. Since the ground area to cover is smaller in Lebanon Israel’s offensive there should not take as long as in the case with Syria. Jerusalem may also prefer a quick victory against the hated Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah even if it means using nuclear weapons. Concerning Palestinian units in Gaza Eliahu recommends a war of containment which would include a ground offensive. Against Iran he recommended long range attacks should be continued.
rfn=Tokyo – France24/AFP report, after the bulldozer attack in Jerusalem, Israel Environment Minister Gideon Ezra, responded as he met with Japan’s government, “Terrorism and smuggling are the two grounds for Israel’s military action in Gaza. Israel is walking a very thin rope while trying to do everything possible not to escalate the region into another armed conflict. But as you know the terrorists of Hamas and Hezbollah are doing the exact opposite with encouragement of the rule of terror.” Though the man acted alone Hamas justified his attack. [FRANCE24]
rfn=Teheran – As part of its service IMDA does mention in its site every known missile in the stockpile of Islamic governments and groups in the region from Hamas to Teheran from the short range Qassam rocket to the long range ballistic missile the BM-25. Sources informed IMDA in late 2005 Iran purchased eighteen of them along with eighteen missile launchers from North Korea. The missile was first produced in the Soviet Union then sold to Pyongyang where it was redesigned and I do not believe North Korea could have purchased such an advanced weapons system without outside assistance such as Beijing. Beijing has eagerly played a leading role not only in North Korea’s nuclear – ballistic missile programs but also in Pakistan and Iran’s because Beijing knew if Iran-Pakistan were successful then three of China’s rivals would become weaker, the West-India-Russia. The missile is estimated to have a range between 2,500-4,000 km (1,500-2,500 miles) and fired from Iran it can reach most of Europe. [IMDA]