MOSCOW, BM, ($1= 74.24 Russian Rubles) – The leadership of the Israeli Air Force announced at a briefing yesterday, July 14, that during the “rocket war” [a term used by BulgarianMilitary.com in the 11-day conflict between Israel and Gaza in May this year – ed.] between Israelis and Palestinians this May, an Israeli F-15 was hit by a rocket.
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The Israeli military does not say when the incident occurred, but confirms the following: at one point in the conflict, the Iron Dome interceptor rocket did not recognize an Israeli F-15 and “locked” it i.e. accepts the F-15 as an enemy rocket and begins to pursue the fighter. The Israeli military, which operated the Iron Dome in question, discovered this rocket error and managed to detonate it shortly before it hit the fighter. Thus, the F-15 was damaged by rocket shrapnel as a result of the explosion.
The rocket used by the Iron Dome is called Tamir. An anti-aircraft battery includes radar and a rocket launcher. Israel is famous for its very well-developed systems that successfully recognize “friend or foe” in the air. For this reason, the airspace over Israel was not closed during the conflict, and trade flights continued.
Israel has confirmed that it is launching an investigation into the incident, which “miraculously” did not lead to the destruction of its fighter jet. This investigation is important because it will aim to establish why the “friend-enemy” system did not recognize the Israeli F-15.
At the same time, Russian media are beginning to claim that it is not Israel that is to blame for the destruction of the Israeli F-15, but the Syrian army. Their logic is as follows: for a Tamir rocket from the Iron Dome to fail to recognize who is a friend or an enemy, this means that there must be powerful electronic jamming at the time of the incident. Ie to select its F-15, the missile had a suppressed signal and information exchange.
The Russians claim that there has been such electronic suppression, and for this reason, the Syrian military has decided to attack the Israeli fighter, confident that they will succeed in their endeavor.
There is no confirmed information, either from Israel or Syria, that a Syrian rocket was the cause of the damage to the Israeli F-15. However, during the fighting between Israel and Gaza, Tel Aviv officially confirmed that at one point in the conflict, three rockets were fired from Syrian territory. They are believed to have been transported with hundreds of others from Iran to involve Tehran informally in the conflict. The shelling of Israeli territory from Syria took place between May 14-15 – right in the middle of the conflict.
The violence began after the focus fell on controversial judicial and political actions over the Palestinian-populated Sheikh Jara district of East Jerusalem. An Israeli court initially ruled that Palestinians should be evicted from the neighborhood and be populated with Israelis. A hearing on the eviction followed, but it never ended last Sunday and was postponed.
On Monday, May 10, Jerusalem was subjected to a brief rocket attack by al-Quds and Hamas with a request on the eviction decision. Israel did not comply with the Palestinians, which led to a retaliatory strike and a rocket fire between the two countries for the second day in a row.
According to a field source, Israel has involved fighter jets and tanks in the conflict, which are hitting 130 targets in the Gaza Strip. These goals are related to the Hamas movement. According to the Israeli authorities, these goals are also associated with terrorist organizations.
Nearly 4,000 rockets were fired between May 10 and 21 this year when Hamas attacked almost all of the Israeli territory. Israel’s Iron Dome air defense system intercepted many of them, but on the first day, those in the coastal city of Ashkelon initially had technical problems that were eliminated by Israeli troops.
The 11-day conflict claimed a total of 257 lives and nearly 2,000 were injured by Palestinians. Israel lost 13 people. The armistice with Egypt’s active participation is still ongoing.
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