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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Iran trying to supply Hamas with Fajr missiles

On Monday, I posted a video simulation of a Hamas rocket shot from northern Gaza hitting Tel Aviv's Azrieli Center. Iran is doing all it can to make that scenario happen. The news that Iran is trying to equip Hamas with Fajr missiles was first reported during Operation Cast Lead. Now that Operation Cast Lead has ended, those efforts have been renewed.
The IDF is concerned that Hamas and Iran will try to smuggle long-range Fajr missiles into the Gaza Strip. Fajr missiles, manufactured in Iran, have a range of 70 km. and if fired from Gaza would easily reach Tel Aviv.

On Monday, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said that renewed weapons smuggling would be legitimate grounds for Israel to renew attacks against Hamas.

While the Fajr is large - 10 meters in length compared to the two-meter Grads - it is believed that it would be possible to smuggle the rockets into Gaza after it was disassembled into several components and via a tunnel dug especially large for the purpose.
The IDF believes that it destroyed 80% of Hamas' smuggling tunnels, which means that 20% still exist and we can expect that Hamas will be digging more smuggling tunnels in the future.

The IDF also believes that Hamas has "less than 1000" rockets left, after it fired more than 600 rockets over the last three weeks and the IDF destroyed 1200 rockets.

By the way, I see no mention here of the even-longer-range Zelzal missiles. Perhaps those are too big to disassemble and fit into the tunnels.

In any event, this shows once again why Israel was foolish not to completely destroy Hamas' infrastructure while it had the opportunity.


At 11:06 AM, Blogger Outrider said...

my impression was Iran was going to cut off arms shipments to Hamas and Hizb'Allah if they accepted the Egyptian ceasefire? Guess that changed?

At 12:01 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

It was not an Egyptian ceasefire. It was an Israeli one so Iran's threat did not apply. And in any case, it is permitted in Islam to mislead the infidel in order to bring about his downfall later. Iran never renounced its intention to destroy Israel and nothing that happens in Washington today is going to dissuade them from pursuing it.

At 4:25 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

I don't understand how Israel could have "completely dismantled Hamas' infrastructure" without killing or driving out nearly everyone in Gaza...which the world would not allow. Not even George Bush.


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