Israel’s military has a multi-tiered network of integrated air defense systems “on alert” for any attack by Iran’s missiles, Israeli Air Force chief Amikam Norkin confirmed on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said earlier this month Iran intends to attack Israel, and any attack which emanates from Yemen complicates the IDF’s response as its intermediate and long-range air defenses are better positioned to shoot down incoming attacks from Israel’s north, rather than from the south.
“Even as we speak, Arrow, Patriot, David’s Sling and Iron Dome batteries are on alert,” Norkin said Wednesday night at a graduation ceremony for air defense officers.
The Times of Israel reports the air defense chief was referring to each of the military’s air defense systems, from the Arrow and Patriot systems, which are designed to destroy incoming long-range missiles and aircraft, to the mid-range David’s Sling, and the Iron Dome system, which can shoot down short-range rockets and small drones.
“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.
Iran has never concealed its desire to wipe Israel off the map, as Breitbart News has reported.
Just last month Iran’s top Revolutionary Guards commander, Major General Hossein Salami, warned that destroying arch-enemy Israel was an “achievable goal”.
“This sinister regime must be wiped off the map and this is no longer … a dream (but) it is an achievable goal,” he said, as quoted by the Guards’ Sepah news site.
Four decades on from Iran’s Islamic revolution, “we have managed to obtain the capacity to destroy the imposter Zionist regime”, he said.
Iran has been consistently hostile towards Israel since its 1979 revolution, and Tehran openly supports anti-Israeli armed groups including Palestinian Hamas and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.
In November 2018, leader Hassan Rouhani reaffirmed Tehran’s long-held position Israel is “a malignant cancerous tumor that must be removed and eradicated.”
Rouhani said in an address at an annual Islamic Unity Conference that Israel was a “fake regime” set up by Western countries.
“One of the ominous results of World War II was the formation of a cancerous tumor in the region,” he said, according to English quotes published a state-affiliated agency.
Iranian generals routinely express the desire to destroy Israel or claim to be able to wipe out Tel Aviv and General Salami in particular is known for making bold statement of Iranian intent.