Israel No Longer Has Full Freedom of Action over Lebanon
Outgoing air force chief Amikam Norkin said Israel no longer has unfettered air superiority and freedom of action in Lebanon’s skies in an interview broadcast on Tuesday, April 5.
After a drone was nearly shot down by an anti-aircraft missile over Lebanon about a year ago, Israel realized that Lebanon’s Hezbollah terror group had some capabilities it was not previously aware of, Norkin said.
Israeli officials realized aircraft were threatened by Hezbollah missiles over Lebanon and decided to reduce the number of surveillance flights over its northern neighbor, harming Israel’s intelligence-gathering capabilities, Norkin told the Kan public broadcaster.
The Iran-backed Hezbollah is believed to be holding onto some weapons, like anti-aircraft missiles, in case of war with Israel to surprise Israeli forces, the report said.
The report seemed to confirm a boast by Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah in February that Israeli drone flights over Lebanon have been “greatly reduced” due to Hezbollah’s improved air defenses.
“We need to present what we can do, not only in Iran, in 2022, 2023, and on. But we also need to stand by what we cannot do, because the air force head has a huge responsibility,” Norkin said. “And based on what answers they give, decisions are made by the leadership. So I only give accurate, reliable answers about what we can do.”
The Israeli Air Force regularly acts against Iran-linked targets in Syria, and sometimes over Lebanon, but has been contending with new aerial challenges from Hezbollah and other adversaries.
The Israeli military fears that in the coming years its air superiority may be tested as Iranian-made and -designed drones and cruise missiles flood the Middle East, representing a greater threat to Israel than the simple rockets that terror groups in the region have possessed until now. (TOI VFI News)
And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. - Matthew 24:6