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Testing Iran’s Defenses via Syria

John on September 8, 2007 at 2:51 pm

I’m borrowing this from Allah at Hot Air. He made it an addendum to another post. I think it’s worth a post of its own.

Was the recent Israeli flyover into Syria a test? Debkafile says so:

Western intelligence circles stress that information on Russian missile consignments to Syria or Iran is vital to any US calculation of whether to attack Iran over its nuclear program. They assume that the “absolute jamming immunity” which the Russian manufactures promised for the improved Pantsyr missiles was immobilized by superior electronic capabilities exercised by the jets before they were “forced to leave.”

Syria took delivery in mid-August of 10 batteries of sophisticated Russian Pantsyr-S1E Air Defense Missile fire control systems with advanced radar, those sources report. They have just been installed in Syria.

Understanding that the Pantsyr-S1E had failed in its mission to bring down trespassing aircraft, Moscow hastened Thursday, Sept 6, to officially deny selling these systems to Syria or Iran and called on Israel to respect international law. This was diplomatic-speak for a warning against attacking the Russian-made missiles batteries stations where Russian instructors are working alongside Syrian teams.

Western intelligence circles maintain that it is vital for the US and Israel to establish the location and gauge the effectiveness of Pantsyr-S1E air defenses in Syrian and Iranian hands, as well as discovering how many each received.

They estimate that at least three or four batteries of the first batch of ten were shipped to Iran to boost its air defense arsenal; another 50 are thought to be on the way, of which Syria will keep 36.

The purported Israeli air force flights over the Pantsyr-S1E site established that the new Russian missiles, activated for the first time in the Middle East, are effective and dangerous but can be disarmed. Western military sources attribute to those Israeli or other air force planes superior electronics for jamming the Russian missile systems, but stress nonetheless that they were extremely lucky to get away unharmed, or at worst, with damage minor enough for a safe return to base.

The NY Post is also claiming much the same thing. The clock is ticking on Iran’s attempt to build a nuclear weapon. I don’t think the Israelis are going to let it happen.

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Category: Islamic Jihad |

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