There has been a great deal of discussions on the possible scenario of a pre-emptive missile attack by Iran on the State of Israel. Recent televised events regarding Iran’s reactions to threats imposed by the U.N. Security Council due to the refusal of the Islamic Republic to end it’s nuclear fuel enrichment plans, are beginning to create more than just controversy and mild concern. They are now resulting in ‘alarm bells’ being run by even such people as Pensioner Party leader and government minister Rafi Eitan, who, as a former Mossad security professional, is calling for a massive shelter preparation in Israel in the event that the Iranians and the Americans become involved in a future military conflict. “If Iran and the U.S become involved in a military confrontation, then Israel will be the first to be struck” Eitan was quoted as saying.
With Israel’s northern third now beginning to recover from a much lesser barrage of Katyusha and other types of missiles; many of them supplied by Iran and Syria; the big concern, is exactly what kind of preparations must be made? This concern is in light of what happened during the recent conflict when it has now become obvious that this country was totally unprepared for being hit daily by so many missile launchings. As it turned out, Israel’s heavily populated central regions were only spared because larger missiles such as the Iranian made Zilzal 2 and 3 with ranges of up to 200 km could not be launched (or were not launched) due to Israel’s daily air strikes and air surveillance of possible launching sites in southern Lebanon. Launching of missiles from sites in Iran are a different matter, however, as those of us who were here during the 1992 Gulf War can testify to. When Iraqi launched Scud missiles began striking targets in Tel Aviv and elsewhere, most people were sitting in sealed rooms in their own apartments, as the greatest fear at that time was Saddam Hussein using non-conventional war-heads containing nerve or mustard gas concoctions. Though some shelters were put to use, the greater fear by Israel governmental authorities was from unconventional weapons.
Iran has literally hundreds, if not thousands of missiles capable of reaching all parts of Israel. Even if Mahmud Ahmadinejad and the Mullahs (who actually call the shots there) would use unconventional weapons, including nuclear ones, against Israel is still a matter of speculation at this stage. What should be a matter of concern is what damage could be inflicted by warheads, containing enough explosive material to destroy a large commercial building or apartment block. A missile of this type could destroy a power station, oil refinery, airport terminal, etc.; not to mention what damage it could do to a large apartment building or shopping mall such as Azrieli Center. Anti-missile defense systems such as the Arrow and Patriot systems would only be partially effective as it would depend on how many of these missiles might be launched at once.
There are presently few public shelters that could stand the direct hit of a missile such as the Shihab 3 or 4, both of which can carry a substantial conventional payload, not to mention an unconventional one. A completely new design of shelter would need to be constructed, with at least twenty meters of reinforced concrete in place, to begin to offer at least minimal protection to their inhabitants. And better sanitation and air conditioning systems would need to be designed and constructed as well.
All of this will involve intense preparation and construction, entailing years of work, and at great monetary costs. The question we should all have (and this only for protection against a conventional attack) is whether we have enough time, not to mention money, for this; when at this point we may already have approached the 11th hour.
August 25, 2006 at 1:16 pm
What happened to the arrow in your story? or
what happened to Israel’s response to such an attack by Iran??? never lose your spirit because
of Iranian propaganda,because that is what they want.
August 25, 2006 at 3:57 pm
I wish I could share your optimism,John, but a lot of ‘alarm bells’ are ringing now; and are being sounded by a lot of people with much, much more knowlege about this subject than me.
There is a good article in today’s Jerusalem Post in which a former Israeli general and intellegence chief quoted: “Ahmadinejad is willing to sacrafice half of his country’s population to destroy Israel”.
I wrote a part one to this article, in which I talked a lot about the ‘Arrow’.It wasn’t posted under my name though.(see OJ Archives, May 25, 2006).
Depite having one of the best airforces, etc. in the world, the IDF could not defend over a milion Israeli citizens against Hezbollah’s Ketyusha rockets. This makes be wonder what would be the case agianst the IRBM missiles that Iran possesses at this time. It’s definitey not Iraq in 1981 anymore. It’s a whole different ball game.
August 30, 2006 at 1:41 pm
I really hope Iran develops its nuclear bomb soon as perhaps the threat of mutually assured destruction would knock you arrogant racists down to level pegging. And maybe just maybe you’ll discover the benefits of civilized negotiations?