by Gil Ronen
The Israel Air Force is stepping up its preparations for a possible missile war with Iran and its proxies, with a new “Arrow” ground-to-air missile battery about to become operational.
IDF journal Bamachaneh reported that the new battery – the IAF’s third – will begin operating soon, and will join the aerial defense “umbrella” provided by the IAF’s Cherev Magen (“Defensive Sword”) unit, which operates the Arrow system.
The report did not disclose the location of the new battery but said it was in central Israel and had been carefully chosen. Officers in Cherev Magen said that several physical variables were taken into account when deciding where to place the new battery. The selected site provides the best defense for long-range threats coming from different directions.
Like the other Arrow batteries, the new battery provides defense against ballistic missiles. It will integrate the Arrow system’s newest interception missile, which is considered more accurate than its predecessors. In addition, it will receive the new Oren Adir radar, which has especially long range and is better than older versions at identifying the type of missile being launched at Israel.
A new and unique center for coordination of fire will also be built at the site chosen for the Arrow battery. The center will also control the other Cherev Magen sites at Palmachim, south of Tel Aviv, and at Ein Shemer, east of Hadera.
Since the 1993 Oslo Accords, Israel has embarked on a series of strategic retreats and allowed terrorist forces into the areas it has abandoned (Judea and Samaria, Gaza and southern Lebanon), in the hope that these moves would lead to peace. Instead, they have made it possible to threaten Israel with missiles from several directions at once.