News Digest — 9/4/19

IDF Reveals Evidence Of Hezbollah ‘Precision Missile Factory’

On Tuesday evening (3rd), the Israeli military posted to Twitter images of a Hezbollah compound it says the terror group is using to pursue Iran’s campaign to wipe out the Jewish State.

“We can now reveal that inside this Hezbollah facility is Iranian-supplied machinery used to manufacture precision-guided missiles with an accuracy of less than 33 feet,” tweeted the IDF.

The facility appears to be located near Nabi Chit, Lebanon, less than 62 miles from the Israeli border.

The IDF added, “Iran is trying to turn its proxy Hezbollah into the first terror group in the world with precision-guided missiles.  We won’t let them.”

The IDF explained on Tuesday (3rd) that “in fear of strikes by Israel, Hezbollah moved key equipment from the site to “civilian locations in Beirut.”

The Israeli military also noted that the factory was of “superior importance” to Hezbollah.  An official, speaking anonymously under military rules, said the factory is operational but missing major components.

The announcement came days after Israel and Hezbollah traded fire for the first time in years, following statements by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah that Israel would be forced to “pay a price” for a series of drone strikes in Lebanon, Iraq and Syria, several of which targeted terrorists and infrastructure from his group.

Israel recently revealed that Hezbollah and Iran are pursuing a missile-production facilities in Lebanon.  While Nasrallah has denied these claims, Hezbollah and Iran maintain they have over 150,000 missiles pointed at the Jewish State, whose destruction both entities are committed to pursuing.



‘Sounds Like Messianic Times’: Netanyahu On Arab States Condemning Hezbollah

At a Tuesday (3rd) Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the remarks of the foreign ministers of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) concerning Hezbollah’s aggression.

“This sounds like the Messianic times,” the prime minister said.  But it shows the fundamental change taking place in the Middle East.  The Arab world also understands that the Iranian aggression endangers not only Israel, but the entire region as well.  I call on additional countries to come out against the aggression of Iran and its proxies.”

The foreign ministers were reacting to Sunday’s (3rd) attack against Israel.  Hezbollah terrorists launched Kornet anti-tank missiles into Israeli territory, narrowly missing an IDF armored vehicle.

Hezbollah said it carried out the attack in revenge for an Israeli strike against Hezbollah terrorists in Syria, who were about to launch a drone attack on Israeli territory.  According to reports, Hezbollah is planning a second revenge-attack for the destruction of a heavy mixer – a component critical to the manufacture of fuel for precision missiles.

Israel says it will not permit Hezbollah to obtain precision missile technology.  Netanyahu referred to this during the Cabinet meeting Tuesday (3rd). Listing three main goals he set out for the IDF, he said the second was “to prevent Iran from supplying our enemies and its proxies, such as Hezbollah and others with precision weapons that endanger us.”

First and third were “stopping Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons” and “preventing Iran and its proxies from entrenching on our borders.”



Lebanese Baby Named Avivim After Israeli Community Targeted By Hezbollah

A Lebanese couple has named their newborn daughter after a community in northern Israel that was the site of an attack Sunday (1st) by the Hezbollah terror group, local media reported Tuesday (3rd).

The baby was born a few hours after an anti-tank missile was fired toward an Israeli military vehicle near the community of Avivim, missing by several meters.

Though the Israel Defense Forces said no soldiers were injured in the incident, Hezbollah maintains there were casualties and has celebrated the act as a “victory.”

Lebanese television network, Al Jadeed reported Tuesday (3rd) that the baby was called “Avivim,” adding that “Avivim’s father did not hesitate before giving his daughter a Hebrew name since it reminds him every day of the resistance’s promise.”

“We were going to call her Riman, but because of this event we called her Avivim,” said the father, who was not identified by name in the report.

“This name has a clear goal, the Israeli enemy knows what we mean by “Avivim,” it knows what that means for it,” he continued.

The father said he could name more babies after Hebrew words commemorating alleged Hezbollah successes, listing as examples, “Dovey,” “Tzabar” and “Netanya.”

Dovey is a small community in northern Israel that was evacuated during the First  Lebanon War in 1982. Four Katyusha rockets landed at the time on its outskirts.

Tzabar is an IDF battalion belonging to the Givati Brigade.  Its commander Shmuel Adiv was killed in 1988 in a gunfight with Hezbollah fighters.

Netanya is a city in central Israel, north of Tel Aviv.  During the Second Lebanon War in 2006, Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah threatened to launch rockets that would reach Netanya, though that did not happen.

Asked whether he doesn’t have a problem with Hebrew names, Avivim’s father said, “I don’t have a problem with them if they have a certain purpose that reinforces victory and reminds us of a very good event.”

“Every time I call Avivim, I will be reminded of the promise by Sayyed Nasrallah.  If he promises, he delivers,” he added, presumably referring to the Hezbollah chief’s promise to retaliate for an Israeli strike last week in Syria that killed two Hezbollah members, as well as for a separate drone strike on a Hezbollah center in Beirut blamed on the Jewish state.



Prime Minister To Visit Hebron For First Time In Two Decades

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be speaking at Wednesday’s (4th) commemoration of the 1929 Arab Massacre of Jews in Hebron in his first visit to the ancient city in 21 years.

Once a decade there is an official ceremony marking the murder of 67 Jewish residents of Hebron and the wounding of dozens more by an Arab mob on August 24, 90 years ago, in what was then British-Mandate Palestine.

In 2009, the highest government official present was Supreme Court Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, and the ceremony took place in the ancient Jewish cemetery.

This time around, Netanyahu, who has not made an official visit to the city since 1998, will give a speech at one of the two state ceremonies that will be held in the much larger open space in the compound near the Cave of the Patriarchs.

The timing of his return to the controversial city, in which about a thousand Jews live in a section under Israeli control among over 150,000 Arabs under Palestinian Authority control, comes just two weeks before Israel’s election on the 17th.  

For many years the Jewish community in Hebron has been working to give back to the owners – which is the Jewish community of the city – their ancient wholesale market, Hebron’s Jewish activists said.

The market area was originally bought by a Jewish rabbi for communal use in 1807, but following the 1929 massacre, the British forced all remaining Jews to leave the city.

When the region was occupied by the Jordanians after Israel’s War of Independence, the municipality leased the once Jewish Market buildings to Arab vendors.

“Nine months ago a legal breakthrough was achieved.  The Israeli Attorney General approved to discontinue the Arab municipality’s hold on the confiscated market, and to plan a large Jewish neighborhood there instead.  The only thing remaining to implement this historic decision is the prime minister’s approval.”  

“We expect Netanyahu to declare this decision in his speech on Wednesday,” said members of Hebron’s Jewish community.



Cobra Warrior: Israeli Air Force Takes Part First Time In British Aerial Exercise

Britain’s Cobra Warrior exercise began on Monday (2nd).  Israeli Air Force (IAF) jets arrived in the United Kingdom last week in preparation.

The Jerusalem Post reported that three F-15 “C” Baz, four F-15 “D” Baz fighters, a KC-707 Re’em tanker and C-130J Hercules are participating.

“We are happy and proud to participate in the ‘Cobra Warrior’ exercise.  This is the first time IAF fighter aircraft are deployed to and flying in Britain,” said Brigadier General Amnon Ein-Dar, the IAF’s head of Training and Doctrine Directorate.

The Royal Air Force (RAF) reports that military aircraft from the German, Italian and U.S. Air Forces will also be joining the RAF exercise, which was formerly known as Combined Qualified Weapons Instructor.

Fifty aircraft of various types will participate in the exercise, which will last 20 days.  They will engage in high-intensity large force tactical training, the RAF said.

“Israel is enthusiastic about the exercise,” said Brig. Gen. Amnon Ein-Dar.  “The deployment will help improve IAF readiness and capability. We view this exercise as the highest standard of training, an excellent opportunity for mutual learning and bolstering cooperation between partners,” he said.

Exercise Director and Group Captain Robert Barrett of the RAF said, “The RAF welcomes the participation of our Air Force colleagues from other nations, and we welcome the opportunity to train alongside all of the participating nations’ forces on this challenging exercise.”

The invitation to Cobra Warrior will be reciprocated as RAF pilots are expected to participate in Israel’s Blue Flag in 2020.

“It will be the first time that RAF jets will train in Israeli airspace,” The Jerusalem Post reports.