Israel Raises Alert Level in Response to Iran Threat

israel iran
The “Arrow II” intercepting missile launcher at the Palmachim Airforce base near Rishon Letzion. (Hadas Parush/Flash 90)

The Israeli military and some embassies around the world have reportedly raised their alert levels due to indications that Iran is preparing for a strike against Israeli targets.

Officials were said to be concerned that Tehran has turned more “aggressive and creative” than before, after its recent attack on Saudi oil facilities, and might choose a target outside of Israel, according to the Kan broadcaster on Tuesday.

News of enhanced preparedness came after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on Monday that Iran was deploying precision-guided missiles aimed at Israel in Yemen and elsewhere in the region.

Media reports suggest that Iran might carry out an attack using cruise missiles or suicide drones similar to the October attack against Saudi Arabia.

To meet the threat, the Israeli Air Force “adjusted” air defenses, although the nature of the adjustments was not clear.

However, according to a report in the online magazine Breaking Defense, Israel recently upgraded the Barak-8ER system with an extended range to protect against cruise missiles, a land-based configuration of the long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) or the Barak-8 naval air defense system.

Boaz Levy, Israel Aerospace Industries VP and general manager, was quoted in the report as saying that the upgraded Barak-8ER system should be sufficient to protect Israeli cities from cruise missiles.

The system adds to an existing multi-tier air defense array including: the Iron Dome, designed to shoot down short-range rockets; the Arrow (Arrow-2 and Arrow-3) which intercepts ballistic missiles outside of the Earth’s atmosphere; and the newly operational David’s Sling, for intercepting tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets, and cruise missiles fired at a range of between 25 and 200 miles.

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