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The Daily TIP: Drone Launched from Syria Infiltrates 10 Kilometers into Israel Before Being Shot Down

Posted by Tip Staff - July 11, 2018

Drone Launched from Syria Infiltrates 10 Kilometers into Israel Before Being Shot Down
Germany Charges Iranian Diplomat in Paris Terror Plot
Expert: Iran is Fueling Israel's Conflict with Hamas to Protect its Proxies in Syria
Israeli Venture to Shoot for the Moon in December

Drone Launched from Syria Infiltrates 10 Kilometers into Israel Before Being Shot Down

An Israeli Patriot missile intercepted a drone, which had penetrated 10 kilometers (6 miles) into Israeli airspace, over the Sea of Galilee on Wednesday, The Times of Israel reported.

The launching of the Patriot activated sirens in the southern Golan Heights and northern Jordan Valley regions. The Patriot missile, however, intercepted the drone and shot it down over the Sea of Galilee. Fragments of the drone dropped into the water below.

Residents in northern Israel reported seeing trails of smoke and hearing explosions.

The extent of the penetration suggests that the drone was deliberately sent into Israel. According to the IDF, the drone had been launched from Syria but entered Israel through Jordan. It isn't clear how the drone managed to penetrate so deeply into Israel before being shot down.

“The IDF will not allow a violation of the State of Israel’s aerial sovereignty and will take action against any attempt to harm its citizens,” the army said.

In 2017, Israel shot down three drones that entered Israeli airspace from Syria. Two were identified as Syrian military drones, and one was identified as coming from the Iran-backed terrorist group, Hezbollah.

Israel in February intercepted an Iranian drone that had penetrated Israeli airspace. Israel has reportedly carried out airstrikes against the Tiyas or T-4 airbase, from where the drone was launched inside Syria in February and April. In April, the IDF announced that the drone which had infiltrated in February had been armed with explosives.

Germany Charges Iranian Diplomat in Paris Terror Plot

German prosecutors have charged an Iranian diplomat with activity as a foreign agent and conspiracy to commit murder, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday. Prosecutors said their investigation would not hinder Belgium’s extradition request for the suspect.

Federal prosecutors announced that Vienna-based diplomat Assadollah Assadi is suspected of contracting a couple in Belgium to carry out an attack on an annual Paris meeting of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an exiled umbrella organization representing a variety of Iranian opposition groups. Speakers at the event included high-profile American politicians, including Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump’s attorney.

German authorities said Assadi was suspected of having given the couple a device containing 500 grams of the explosive TATP. The Iranian official had been detained earlier this month near the German city of Aschaffenburg on a European warrant, after the Belgian citizens of Iranian heritage were stopped in Belgium and authorities reported finding powerful explosives in their car.

Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, rejected claims of Iran’s involvement in the attack and described the accusations as a “sinister false flag ploy.” In May, Iranian officials were forced to deny accusations by United States Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, that its elite Revolutionary Guards carried out “assassination operations in the heart of Europe.” The State Department released a graphic last week showing eleven Iranian terror attacks or attempts that have taken place over the past 30 years in Europe.

Expert: Iran is Fueling Israel's Conflict with Hamas to Protect its Proxies in Syria

Iran has been seeking to escalate tensions along Israel's southern border with Gaza, with the goal of "deterring" Israel from taking decisive action either in its north or south, an expert on Lebanon argued in an essay published Monday in Tablet.

Tony Badran, an expert on Lebanon, noted that various factions in Gaza have, in recent weeks, fired rockets into Israel and that these attacks should not be viewed as accidental, but rather "as part of a coordinated Iranian strategy."

Iran isn't anxious to attack Israel through Lebanon, as that would lead to the devastation of Hezbollah's home base.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is doing nothing to prevent Israel from attacking Iranian assets in Syria.

Iran thus has one option to protect its assets in Syria.

"The purpose of all the activity in Gaza, therefore, is to tie down and distract Israel, and then look to divide its forces between two active fronts, in the hope of deterring them from truly acting on either," Badran observed. "If successful, Iran will have set up fronts on Israel’s borders with Gaza, Lebanon and Syria."

Israel, on the other hand, will not allow the establishment of an Iranian military presence on its border. Nor will Israel tolerate "low-intensity conflict on their borders as a norm.”

Where are the building threats from Iran leading?

Badran concluded by noting that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently said that “if there needs to be” conflict with Iran, “it is better now than later.”

Israeli Venture to Shoot for the Moon in December

Determined to continue its race to the moon despite the expiration of the $20 million Google Lunar XPRIZE competition last March, Israel’s nonprofit SpaceIL announced plans to launch its unmanned module on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida in mid-December.

If the module reaches the moon as expected on February 13, 2019, it will make history as the smallest and first privately funded unmanned spacecraft to land on the moon.

“Our mission was never about winning the prize money – although $20 million would have been nice,” said SpaceIL CEO Ido Anteby. “It’s about showing the next generation that anything is possible – that even our small country can push the limits of imagination.”

On July 10, SpaceIL gave the press its first look inside the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) MABAT Space facility in Yehud near Israel’s airport, where the nonprofit organization has been collaborating with IAI for eight years to build the 1,322-pound (600-kilogram) spacecraft.

Until now, only three world superpowers — the United States, Russia, and China — have achieved controlled lunar landings.Lacking the resources of those superpowers, SpaceIL turned to private donors to fund the project. SpaceIL was the first of 16 Google Lunar XPRIZE competitors to sign a launch contract and one of only five teams to reach the finals.

IAI CEO Josef Weiss said he regards the launch of the first Israeli spacecraft to the moon as an example of the amazing capabilities once can reach in civilian space activity.

(via Israel21c)

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