IDF expects Hizbullah to target roads

Army to simulate moving vehicles under rocket barrage.

July 22, 2010 00:03
2 minute read.
IDF tanks near border between Israel and Gaza

IDF tanks near Gaza 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)


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Fearing massive missile fire on main roads and bases in a future war with Hizbullah and Syria, the IDF will in the near future test its ability to move assets and platforms throughout the country and into enemy territory during a conflict.

The exercise, under the supervision of the army’s Technological and Logistics Directorate, will include hundreds of vehicles and officers. Most of the drill will be conducted in computerized simulations.

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The drill comes amid intensive IDF preparations for a possible war with Hizbullah in Lebanon. The army is working under the assumption that most of the ground battle will be fought in an urban setting, inside the 160 or so villages throughout southern Lebanon where Hizbullah is believed to have hidden most of its military infrastructure.

Two weeks ago, the IDF for the first time declassified evidence of Hizbullah’s growing presence inside the villages. Using the village of el-Khiam – located 4 kilometers north of Israel – as an example, the IDF showed extensive footage, videos and maps of homes that Hizbullah has taken over and used to store weapons caches and establish command- and-control centers.

According to a senior IDF officer, the military’s assumption is that Hizbullah will target supply lines in a future war.

“Hizbullah will likely allow the [Israeli] military force to reach its target point and then begin striking at the supply lines which the forces in the field will need to secure,” the officer said on Wednesday, adding that this would require the IDF to allocate unmanned aerial vehicles and attack helicopters to secure the supply lines.

Hizbullah has heavily mined roads leading into southern Lebanese villages, aware that the IDF ground offensive will include tanks and armored personnel carriers.

As a result, the IDF will likely create combined brigades – as it did during Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip last year – that include infantry, engineering and armored forces.

The army is also concerned with Hizbullah and potentially Syrian missile fire on main roads inside Israel, in an effort to impair the transfer of military platforms – such as tanks, armored personnel carriers and artillery cannons – to the northern border from storage centers in the center of the country and the South.

As a result, the IDF has reestablished the Transport Unit, which was dismantled following the First Lebanon War in 1982 and is responsible for directing military convoys throughout the country.

The unit liaisons with the Traffic Police and will, in a future conflict, receive triple the amount of personnel that it has now, as well as unmanned aerial vehicles that it could

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