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Maj.-Gen. (res.) Nitzan Alon (C) talks to former defense minister Avigdor Liberman.(Photo by: DEFENSE MINISTRY)
Avigdor Liberman: Israel is in an emergency security situation
By ANNA AHRONHEIM
11/02/2019
Former defense minister was referring to comments by IAF Chief Maj.-Gen.Norkin who said Israel's missile defense systems were on alert.
Former defense minister and Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Liberman warned that Israel is in an emergency situation amid heightened tensions and a general threat of attack by Iran.

“When IAF Commander Maj.-Gen. Amikam Norkin warns that the challenge of aerial defense is becoming more complex and the threat of missiles and rockets is now being joined by drones and cruise missiles and when the IDF is deploying David's Sling and Arrow defense systems, it means we are in an emergency situation,” he wrote on his Facebook page on Friday.

Liberman was referring to comments made by Norkin on Wednesday at a graduation ceremony for air defense officers.

“The challenge of air defense has become more complicated. Joining the threat of missiles and rockets are now attack drones and cruise missiles,” he said. “Even as we speak, Arrow, Patriot, David’s Sling and Iron Dome batteries are on alert.”

According to reports in Hebrew-language media, a series of adjustments were made to IAF air defense systems in light of the fear that Iran might try to carry out an attack using cruise missiles or suicide drones similar to the October attack against Saudi Arabia.

Israel has been carrying out a war-between-wars campaign in an attempt to prevent Iran and its proxies like Hezbollah from obtaining advanced weapons to use against the Jewish state and from entrenching itself in Syria.

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have warned in recent days of the increased threat posed by the Islamic Republic which they say is getting bolder and more willing to respond to Israeli attacks on Iranian and Iranian-backed militias and infrastructure.

Earlier in the week Netanyahu said that Iran has deployed long-range rockets to Yemen in order to strike Israel.

"Iran wants to develop precision-guided missiles that can hit any target in Israel within 5-10 meters. It's doing it," Netanyahu said Monday evening during an event at the Jewish Agency.  "Iran wants to use Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen as bases to attack Israel with statistical missiles and precision-guided missiles. That is a great, great danger."

Israel has a comprehensive protective umbrella able to counter the growing missile threats from its enemies and continuously improves the technology behind the country’s anti-missile systems.

This includes the Iron Dome designed to shoot down short-range rockets, the Arrow (Arrow-2 and Arrow-3) system which intercepts ballistic missiles outside of the Earth’s atmosphere, and the newly operational David’s Sling missile defense system which is designed to intercept tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets, as well as cruise missiles fired at ranges between 40 to 300km. 

Israel also has three Patriot system batteries as well as the Barak-8ER long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) designed to defend against a myriad of short-to-long range airborne threats like incoming missiles, planes and drones at both low or high altitudes and upgraded to have an extended range to protect against cruise missiles.

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