Israel’s air force still keeps eye on Iran despite nuclear deal
The effort is overseen by the IAF’s Air Operations, established in the midst of Operation Protective Edge in 2014, as the body responsible for activating and building up Israeli air power.
Air Operations is the recently- established headquarters responsible for how the air force operates, drawing up and carrying out offensive and defensive missions, processing threat alerts, using intelligence to build up strike plans, and many other crucial IAF activities.
It replaced a 40-year-old IAF command structure that a senior military source described as having been incapable of managing the air force’s modern and many roles.
“Hezbollah in Lebanon remains the main threat,” a senior military source said.
“That’s where things are happening that we may not fully grasp. If a third Lebanon war breaks out, we may not fully be aware of the scope and intensity of that event. Hezbollah in the north is the main thing,” the source told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.
But Iran remains a very significant potential theater in the future, he said.
Despite the historic nuclear agreement last year, “We always have to be ready. Iran heads an axis that threatens Israel. Who said that on the twelfth day of a [potential] war with Hezbollah, we won’t get an order from the prime minister to punish Iran [which sponsors and arms Hezbollah]?” Iran could build its confidence over the next three to five years, and then, in eight to 10 years, it could “lift its heads” and seek a nuclear breakout capability, the source said.
Meanwhile, Iran still “nourishes” the area with malicious terrorism and weapons, the source added.
“The IAF and Military Intelligence have to be ready,” he said.
The source agreed to provide general descriptions of the IAF’s war between wars – a covert effort to disrupt enemies’ ongoing attempts to build up offensive capabilities, particularly surface-to-surface projectiles, of which Hezbollah in southern Lebanon has some 100,000.
The source described “low-intensity, low profile actions, occurring 24-7.” The IAF must carefully maneuver in busy airspace to the north, filled with Russian and American air platforms, and ensure it is not vulnerable
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