On Israel’s southern and northern borders, the IDF Artillery Corps deploys a platform that looks like a standard tank from the outside, but is in fact an armored guided-missile launcher that can strike enemy targets up to 30 km. away.
The Pere platform, which was converted from the M48 (Magah) tank by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, has been in existence since the early 1980s, when it was deployed to meet the threat of massive Syrian tank formations. But it is only now that the IDF is prepared to officially acknowledge it.
According to a senior officer from the Artillery Corps, during last summer’s Gaza war, the Pere fired 433 missiles at Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza.
At no time did the Pere cross the border into Gaza, as all of its targets were within range of its Tamuz guided missiles. The platform consequently offered vital supporting precision fire to infantry and armored units that had moved into the Strip to destroy Hamas cross-border attack tunnels.
The IDF Northern Command has in the past called on the Pere to strike targets in Syria, in response to cross-border fire or terrorist attacks launched by Hezbollah or Assad regime military forces.