Israel in the News Feb/Mar 1997

Hizbullah hiding bombs in fake rocks

Hizbullah has been using fiberglass rocks made in Iran to hide roadside bombs in south Lebanon, the London-based Jane’s Defence Weekly reported. The stones reportedly appear so realistic that the IDF has started removing all rocks and boulders from within 20 meters of the roads in the security zone.

from The Jerusalem Post

Cabinet unfreezes settlements

The cabinet [recently] decided to effectively end a four-year freeze on construction in the settlements—a move described by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as an end of “the discrimination against Jewish settlement in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip.”

At Netanyahu’s urging, the cabinet also agreed that it would be asked to vote only on the establishment of new settlements, but officials in the PM’s Office said there is no plan to establish any.

from The Jerusalem Post

Russian Submarines

The [recent] delivery of the third Russian-built Kilo-class submarine to the Iranian navy has raised concern among naval commanders and intelligence officers, who fear the deadly vessels could easily and quickly find their way into the Mediterranean to aid Israel’s enemies.

“You don’t build a submarine fleet for defense,” one senior intelligence officer said. “Submarines are used for disrupting sea routes and attacking ships. They are a strategic threat to us because 97 percent of our military supplies come via the sea.”

from SNS News Service

Strict recommendations against young drivers

The Directors’ Committee that was established to recommend solutions for the national plague of car accidents has advised that youths should be allowed to drive only when accompanied by an adult. According to the committee’s recommendations, youngsters will receive a temporary license, and only after several years of safe driving will they receive a permanent license. Five youths between the ages of 18 and 20 were killed in car accidents over one recent weekend.

from Arutz-7 News Service

IDF uniforms and apparel easily obtainable nationwide

Whoever decides he/she wants to acquire legitimate IDF uniforms and apparel may do so without difficulty in sporting and Army/Navy stores throughout the country. This includes uniforms, shoes, and adjunct apparel that would give a person a complete set-up.

Following complaints that it is too easy for any person to purchase authentic IDF apparel, Yediot Achronot newspaper checked into the story. They found the allegations to be true. Any person, friendly or otherwise, may purchase IDF uniforms with no questions asked.

According to the Yediot report, many soldiers are able to make agreements with store owners. They turn over their IDF issued uniforms and adjuncts in return for credit to make purchases in the store. It was also learned that some of the stores purchase uniforms from tailors employed by the IDF to sew uniforms.

It is feared that terrorists may obtain uniforms with ease, to assist them in carrying out a terror attack against an Israeli target.

from SNS News Service

Syria said to be building poison gas plant

Syria is building a poison gas factory in Aleppo which could constitute a major threat to Israel’s security, a German magazine reported [recently]. Stern said US intelligence officials had passed on spy satellite photographs of the plant to their German counterparts, who are checking if any Germans are involved in the project. “For Israel, such a project is a nightmare,” said the report, which did not specify its sources. “Unlike Iraq, Iran or Libya, Syria would not need any long-range missiles to fire poison gas into the Jewish state.”

from The Jerusalem Post

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