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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Israeli attack on Sudan carried out by drones, destroyed long-range rockets

Normally, I'd issue an Uzi Mahnaimi alert for this report, but other than the use of drones, which is logical, everything else he reports has been reported in the media here. In Sunday's Times of London, Uzi Mahnaimi reports that the Israeli attacks on Iranian weapons convoys headed to Gaza in Sudan in January and February were carried out by drones. Those smart Joooos didn't even endanger their own soldiers to carry out the attacks.
The raids were carried out by Hermes 450 drones [pictured below. CiJ]. One source claimed they were accompanied by giant Eitan UAVs, which have a 110ft wingspan, similar to that of a Boeing 737. The drones, controlled via satellite, can hover over a target for 24 hours. The Hermes 450 squadron is based at the Palmahim air base, south of Tel Aviv, but it remains unclear from which airfield they took off.

In a phrase that every Israeli recognised as a claim of responsibility for the raid, Israel’s outgoing prime minister, Ehud Olmert, declared last week: “We operate in every area where terrorist infrastructures can be struck.” He added: “We are operating in locations near and far, and attack in a way that strengthens and increases deterrence. There is no point in elaborating. Everyone can use their imagination. Whoever needs to know, knows.”
Actually, most Israelis believed the initial CBS News reports and didn't need Olmert to tell us that the IAF was behind the attacks. One of the advantages of Olmert being out of office is that his big mouth will hopefully, finally be silenced.

Why the drones? Incredibly, the fact that no pilots' lives were going to be placed at risk was just a bonus.
Defence sources said the chief reason for choosing the drones was that a convoy forms a “slippery” target. “When you attack a fixed target, especially a big one, you are better off using jet aircraft. But with a moving target with no definite time for the move UAVs are best, as they can hover extremely high and remain unseen until the target is on the move.”
Yes, that certainly makes sense.

Mahnaimi also reports that the 'cargo' included Fajr-3 rockets, which 'have a range of more than 40 miles' could reach Tel Aviv and the alleged Dimona nuclear reactor from Gaza, and which were split into sections so that they could be smuggled through the tunnels from Egypt into Gaza. Israelis realized almost immediately that these convoys must have contained something that was a 'game changer' or else the IAF would not have taken the risk of attacking on the territory of a sovereign country with which we are not at war.

Lest you think Israel can completely run its military policy by remote control, the convoys' existence was discovered by Mossad agents on the ground.

For those of you who want a Hermes 450 of your very own, I'm afraid you'll have to wait in line.
Hermes 450s are operated by the U.S. Department of Defense Joint Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Test and Evaluation Program at the Naval Air Station Fallon[1], and two Hermes 450s were tested by the U.S. Border Patrol in 2004.

H450 is operated by the British Army by 32nd regiment royal artillery, and is exclusively used on operations in afghanistan and iraq. the british version is the only hermes to use laser gyroscopes in its inertial navigation system. it does not have the option for wing mounted armament. The Hermes 450 is the basis of the British Army Watchkeeper WK450 development which started in July 2005 in conjunction with Thales. Watchkeeper is scheduled to replace Hermes in 2010.

The Israeli Air Force, which operates a squadron of Hermes 450s out of Palmachim Airbase south of Tel Aviv, has adapted the Hermes 450 for use as an assault UAV, reportedly equipping it with two Hellfire missiles or, according to various sources, two Rafael-made missiles. According to Israeli, Palestinian, Lebanese and independent reports, the Israeli assault UAV has seen extensive service in the Gaza Strip and was used intensively in the Second Lebanon War. Israel has not denied this capability, but to date, its policy has been not to officially confirm it either.

Two Hermes 450 were ordered by the Croatian military along with two smaller Skylark UAVs in late 2006. Their service will begin in late 2007.

Recently, the Singapore Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) announced that the RSAF is adding the Hermes 450 to its UAV fleet, as part of the Air Force's new UAV command.

Hermes 450 have also been used by Georgia for reconnaissance over its disputed Abkhazia territory, where some were shot down.
Think about that the next time a country says it wants to boycott Israel.



At 9:52 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Iran should think about far afield Israel is prepared to operate. That's the real significance of the IDF attack on the Sudan. Its a dry run for an eventual military operation against Iran.



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