The IDF deployed an Iron Dome anti-rocket battery in the Haifa area early Friday morning, amid heightened tensions in the North stemming from the ongoing Syrian civil war.
The IDF Spokesman’s Office stated that Iron Dome batteries are redeployed periodically in accordance with appraisals of the security situation.
IDF Chief of Staff Lt.- Gen. Benny Gantz told pilots receiving their wings at the Hatzerim Air Base Thursday, “The region is shaking, from south to north. Syria is hemorrhaging blood, and in Lebanon, the fire has begun to catch the edge of Nasrallah’s robe. In the face of this changing reality, we must be prepared, coordinated and alert, more than ever. You, the graduates, have from now on an inseparable part in safeguarding our readiness against these challenges.”
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon observed a Golani Brigade war drill on the Golan Heights on Wednesday, making it clear they picked that location to send a signal of Israeli determination in the face of a rapidly changing situation in Syria.
“An exercise on the Golan Heights is not just a theoretical exercise,” Netanyahu said after watching a brief part of the multi-day drill on the central Golan. “The situation around us has changed swiftly. It is volatile and dynamic, and we need to be prepared accordingly.”
While a few months ago there was concern in Jerusalem that a rebel victory in Syria could bring al-Qaida forces precariously close to Israel’s border, there is now increasing concern of an Iranian victory in Syria, and its negative implications for Israel.
Netanyahu, who was last on the Golan in January, said that even with all available technology, battles are won by determination and “the ability to break the enemy and instill in them the fear of death.
“I want to tell you from experience that battle is the kingdom of uncertainty – regardless of how much training and preparation,” he said.
The prime minister said he hopes Israel will not “be tested,” but that if it is “we will withstand any challenge.
“We are not seeking to challenge anyone, but no one will harm the State of Israel without a response – a strong and resolute response,” he said.
Herb Keinon and Yaakov Lappin contributed to this report.
View original Jerusalem Post publication at: http://www.jpost.com/Defense/IDF-deploys-Iron-Dome-near-Haifa-amid-heightened-tensions-in-North-318067