Tag Archive | "military"

Iran Begins Testing Ballistic First Strike Capability against Israel

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Israeli sources report that the drill beginning Thursday, Oct. 16 in northern Iran, is Tehran’s rejoinder to Israel’s big aerial maneuver last June.

Then, more than 100 Israeli fighter-bombers went through their paces over the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas, roughly the same distance from Israel as Iran.

Tehran’s media claim the exercise will test its air force’s ability to fly to Israel and back without refueling.

The exercise will also test the US-made FBX-T band anti-missile radar system delivered in September and installed at the IAF Nevatim air base in the Negev. The Iranians say they will be practicing their ”state-of-the-art military equipment and flight tactics,” meaning an attempt to jam US and Israeli electronics and radar.

According to Iranian media, the entire range of Iran’s fighter fleet will take part, including US-made F-4, F-5, F-7 and F-14 fighters and domestic Saegheh fighters. Mid-air refueling will be provided by Boeing 707 aerial tankers.

In mid-August, Iran’s Air Force chief, Brigadier General Ahmad Miqani, maintained that its antiquated fighter jet fleet had been overhauled and upgraded to fly distances of 3,000 kilometers without refueling. That would be more than double the distance between Iran and Israel.

That is why Tabriz, in Azerbaijan, at the northwestern corner of Iran, was picked as the starting point of the exercise. The official communiqué said the planes would be flying from air fields in Tehran, Isfahan, Tabriz and Hamadan and Dezful.

Our military sources say that this means that the entire maneuver will take place over Iran and not venture out its air space. The planes will have to fly to Tabriz from bases in the south near the Pakistan border in order to replicate the more than 1,200 km distance between Iran and Israel.

The Iranian Air force also aims at deploying more than 100 warplanes for the exercise, matching the number Israel used in its maneuver four months ago.

Tehran has timed this large-scale drill for just three weeks before the US presidential election on Nov. 4, in response to speculation rife in the West that Israel may use the window between the US election and the swearing-in of the new president in January for an attack on Iran’s nuclear installations.

The Iranians aim to show they have a first and second strike capability – not just with ballistic missiles but also by aerial attack.

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[tags]israel, iran, military, ahmedinijad[/tags]

Israel has short time to hit Iran’s Nuclear Sites if Moscow sells Tehran S-300 Systems

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Thanks to our friends at DEBKAfile, Russian military experts now calculate that the window for an Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities will shrink to 3-6 months if Moscow sells Iran (and Syria) the sophisticated S-300 system for guarding those sites against air, missile or cruise missile attack.  Moscow sources report that Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert failed in the key missions of his Moscow trip to persuade Russian leaders to discuss Tehran’s nuclear weapons program and to refrain from selling this advanced weapon to Iran and Syria.

President Dmitiry Medvedev’s bureau issued a noncommittal statement Tuesday, Oct. 7, saying that his talks with Olmert were “an exchange of opinion on threats, including terrorism and nonproliferation.” The word “nuclear” was avoided.

Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, who the prime minister met Monday, trotted out the standard Russia claim that Moscow had no definite information that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon and is against tougher sanctions.

Prime minister Vladimir Putin was unable to see him.

Moscow’s mainstream media came out Tuesday with a rerun of the statement made on Sept. 17 by Anatoly Isaikin, director of the Russian arms exports agency Rosoboronexport, that his firm is in advanced negotiations with Tehran for the sale of the S-300 missiles. However, on Monday, the same firm disowned knowledge of these missiles having been shipped to Iran, although negotiations for their sale were not mentioned.

Konstantin Makiyenko, from the center for strategic and technological analysis think tank in the Russian capital, said these utterances put Israel on notice to stop selling arms to Georgia and training its army.

Moscow does not conceal its intention of selling S-300 missiles to Syria. A Russian military expert commented: “Our warships if based in Syrian ports will need to be encircled by missile batteries capable of guarding them against air and missile attack.”

According to Russian experts, the system is capable of pinpointing 100 targets and simultaneously intercepting 12 at a distance of 120 km.

Russian sources made a point of stressing that Moscow is not subject to embargoes on its foreign arms sales or any international restrictions on supplying defensive weapons to other nations.


[tags]russia, s-300, missile defense, iran, syria, israel, weapons program, military[/tags]

Syrian tanks advance to Lebanese Beqaa Valley border; Israel forces on high alert

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Syria moved tank units up to the Lebanese Beqaa Valley border Tuesday, Oct. 7.  This is Damascus’ second troop movement on the Lebanese border. For three weeks, commando units have been poised on the North Lebanese border. In the first deployment, Syrian tanks and armored vehicles were kept some 3-10 km to the rear of frontline commando forces. In the second, which is much closer to the Israeli border, armor and tanks have been deployed at the front.

These military movements sent Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak on an unannounced visit Tuesday to check the state of readiness of the IDF’s dispositions on the Syrian and Lebanese border barriers. He cautioned the outpost commanders to exercise maximum vigilance in the coming days. The border seems quiet, he said, but officers must to take care never to permit a repeat of the Yom Kippur exactly 35 years ago when Israel was caught napping by the Syrian invasion.

Our sources report that Washington, Jerusalem and Beirut are bracing for the possibility that Damascus will seize the moment of the total shutdown in Israel for 25 hours from Wednesday afternoon, Oct. 8, to Thursday night, Oct. 9, for Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) and launch its military forces against northern Lebanon or the Golan.

[tags]syria, idf, military[/tags]

Chinese Military Looking a Lot Like Ours

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Cchinese military binochina is reorganizing its military reserves by reducing the number of infantry units, and increasing the number of combat support troops. This is a trend begun in the United States three decades ago. Many reserve units were converted to provide support functions, and trained to be rapidly mobilized to provide support for the active duty combat units. In the past, and for many other nations to this day, most of the reserves are combat units.

In the 1980s, China finally created a modern, organized, reserve force. Previously, China had a large (over 100 million men) militia. This force was organized at the local level, to either defend against attack, turn into guerillas if their locality was overrun by the enemy, and to provide replacements for combat casualties in regular army units. This militia selected men who had previous military experience, or planned to join the army, as its core leadership. Local Communist Party officials were heavily involved, as they would take the lead in recruiting, and running the show if the local militia had to switch to guerilla operations.

The 1980s reforms disbanded the traditional militia forces (most of which were inactive anyway), and recruited the best men into a 4.3 million man reserve force, with another six million serving as a higher quality militia. The active duty army provided instructors, and some leadership, for the new reserve force, which was organized and equipped largely as combat units. These troops got 30-40 days of training a year, and were paid. They were also subject to inspection to make sure their equipment and training were adequate.

The new reforms are reorganizing and retraining nearly a quarter of these troops to provide support functions, both for the active duty armed forces (the army, navy and air force), as well as being ready to deal with civil disorder, terrorism or natural disasters. Some units are being trained for Cyber War, and other to assist in increasing the capabilities of the navy and air force (to keep ships at sea longer, and to put aircraft into the air more frequently.) All this is costing billions of dollars, but the Chinese are slowly making the money available, and creating a modern reserve force.


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