In a Daily Dispatch earlier this week, Stand for Israel noted that Israel’s greatest ally, the United States, has deployed its Terminal High Altitude Air Defense (THAAD) system in the Holy Land. This is because, writes JNS’ Yaakov Lappin, any future conflicts will find Israel’s enemies such as Iran and Hezbollah targeting civilians with their missile stockpiles, thus making air defense more crucial than ever:
The unprecedented move is part of a drill testing the ability of American forces to quickly arrive in Israel and help the IDF protect the country from incoming ballistic-missile attacks. The exercise could be seen as a signal to Iran and its proxies of Washington’s commitment to help Israel defend its air space in the event of a future war.
Iran has hundreds of ballistic missiles in its arsenal, while its proxy, Hezbollah, has an estimated 130,000 projectiles, including long-range rockets and missiles that can strike any point in Israel.
Maj. Gen. (ret.) Eitan Ben-Eliyahu, who commanded the IAF from 1996 to 2000, told JNS that “from here on out, in any combat scenario, whether it is local or regional, there will be widespread use of rockets and missiles [by the enemy]. Even if the IDF conducts a highly successful offensive strategy, this will not be sufficient to suitably protect the fighting forces, and it especially will not suitably protect the home front. Hence, there is no choice but to combine between offense and active defense at the same time.”
Ben-Eliyahu assessed that future significant wars would involve “the formation of coalitions between countries,” and that this required their militaries to practice working together on air defenses…Tags: Hezbollah IDF Iran Rocket Attacks US-Israel Relations