Israel Military Analysis

By pjain      Published Sept. 11, 2020, 11:49 p.m. in blog Geo-Politics   

Mideast Strategic Geography

Israel Strategic Geography

Egypt Treaty after Yom Kippur 1970s war

Jordan treaty

Arab spring 2010-2015 messes up - but Egypt/Jordan fronts maintained cease-fire

The Arab Spring was a series of anti-government protests, uprisings, and armed rebellions that spread across much of the Arab world in the early 2010s. It began in response to oppressive regimes and a low standard of living, starting with protests in Tunisia. From Tunisia, the protests then spread to five other countries: Libya, Egypt, Yemen, Syria and Bahrain, where either the ruler was deposed or major uprisings and social violence occurred including riots, civil wars or insurgencies. Sustained street demonstrations took place in Morocco, Iraq, Algeria, Iranian Khuzestan, Lebanon, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman,and Sudan. Minor protests in Djibouti, Mauritania, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, and the Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara. A major slogan of the demonstrators in the Arab world is ash-shaʻb yurīd isqāṭ an-niẓām.

Facing the possibility that the dramatic changes in the Middle East could turn peaceful neighbors Egypt and Jordan more hostile to Israel, the Israel Defense Forces aims to build a larger, more flexible force that will be capable of dealing with more than the traditional northern front of Syria and Lebanon.

As part of this, the IAF wants more investment of billions and shiny toys as it claims to be the only service with that flexibility, and it calls for accelerating the plan to procure 75 F-35s by 2030.

In contrast, Israeli ground commanders argue that because of the potential threat that the giant and modern Egyptian army would be turned against Israel, it is necessary to establish an additional mechanized division.

Hezbollah/Lebanon/Golan Heights - raining down balloon weapons

Syria/Shiite front

Israel Army - Rarely Used - Little investment

Israeli Army wants a modern Mechanized tank division

In contrast, Israeli ground commanders argue that because of the potential threat that the giant and modern Egyptian army would be turned against Israel, it is necessary to establish an additional mechanized division.

This would be equipped with Merkava tanks and the new Namer armored personnel carrier. The production of the Namer was moved to General Dynamics Land Systems in the U.S. in order to enable Israel to procure them using US military aid funding, the same funding source used to acquire the F-35s.

Israel Air Force and Air Tactics timeline

Israel buys into F-35I for deterrence

Israel had chosen the F-35 type to replace its fleet of over 320 F-16s.

1948 Dogfights Air Superiority

Since 1948 it has historically mostly trounced its opponents in air-to-air combat dogfights.

SAM vulnerability 1973 Egypt

IAF suffered heavy losses to ground-based air defenses in the 1973 Yom Kippur War against Russian AA in Egypt when its air forces had to turn back.

1980s acquired very old F-16A Netz

F-16s fleet of 320 jets

  • F16s last batch provided 2007 now wearing down

Airspace dominance and deterrence 1940s-2018 - NOMORE

Some cabinet members have opposed buying more F35s and order should possibly be halved due to concerns about the F-35's range, payload and maneuverability suiting Israel's needs.

IRAN MISSIONS - Nuclear Facility Attack Support NOT-TRIVIAL

Furthermore, it could more easily penetrate Iran’s air defenses, and evade detection by neutral countries, than fourth-generation jets, lowering the necessary size of a strike package.

PM Nethanyahu, in power since 2009, clearly favors using military force to suppress Iran’s nuclear research program, having opposed and undermined negotiated settlements. While Tel Aviv basically wants the United States to carry out such an attack, the F-35 makes an Israeli attack on Iran more practical. To do this, Israeli aircraft would have to fly through Turkey, or either Jordan and Syria and then Iraq to reach Iranian aerospace over six hundred miles away. But Iran's key targets would be hardened and much further from the border. This also happens test the range limit of most combat-loaded fourth-generation fighters, meaning they would need conspicuous aerial tankers to make the raid viable. Furthermore, Israeli warplanes would have to disable or destroy Iranian air defenses, which would require additional time and aircraft escorting the main bombers.

SYRIA MISSIONS

201802 S-200 missiles kills F16

In Feb 2018 F16 downed by S-200. Israel jets have continued to face, and mostly defeat, hostile SAMs in scores of raids launched into Lebanon and Syria. In February 2018 it suffered its first combat loss of a fighter in decades when Syrian S-200 missiles downed an Israeli F-16.

2007 Syria nuclear reactor destroyed

Israeli jets violated Turkish airspace in 2007 in order to destroy a nuclear reactor in northern Syria.

However a sustained air campaign traversing foreign airspace would be more difficult to execute than a one-time raid.

Israel buys F-35s @ $120m each - waiting for reduction to $85m each

The entire F-35 package is to be paid for through American military assistance aid so US pays for Israel to buy its planes! Also, the approach sticks to the principle that Israel is the first country in the Middle East to receive the newest fighter aircraft eg ahead of UAE, Saudis, Bahrain and Qatar - other US allies there.

The Israelis were told by leaders that the F-35 would neutralize the threat of S-300 missiles that Russia is under contract to deliver to Iran.

  • 2003 signed a letter of agreement $20 m, to join the System Development and Demonstration (SDD) effort for the F-35 as a "security cooperation participant"
  • 2006 IAF claimed $5b intent to buy 100+ F-35s to replace F16s last batch provided 2007 now wearing down. Though not an investor in the F-35’s development, Tel Aviv was nonetheless quick to sign on to the program with an initial order of fifty.
  • July 2010, Insisted on industrial participation, local electronic warfare parts and local weapons aspects. Approval for 20 F-35s for $2.75 billion to be delivered starting in 2015. This includes the costs of setting up local firms to assemble the aircraft and manufacture spare parts. The total price tag confirmed by Barak indicates that each aircraft costs about $96 million, with further expenses on training, simulators, spare parts and the building of maintenance infrastructure.
  • March 2011 Israel will pay US$144.7M per aircraft for 19 F-35A including a share of development, test and evaluation costs.
  • On December 12, 2016, Israel received its first shipment of two F-35Is (ie no longer pure F35As!) making Israel the first country to have an operational F-35 squadron outside of USA. Primary use would be for training. They were be delivered originally in 2014 but delayed to 2016 i.e. past the date Iran is expected to have operational nuclear weapons, one of the prime reasons for having the F-35.
  • 23 April 2017 IAF received another three F-35I fighter jets.
  • May 22, 2018, Israel's Air force commander, Major General Amikam Norkin, reported that Israel became the first country in the world to use the F-35 in combat during recent clashes with Iran in Syria.
  • 2019 July Delivery of remaining two F35s bringing total to 16.
  • Delay allowed co-development with as many Israeli-made systems as possible.

Israel has paid a high price of between $110 to $125 million per F-35 for its initial order. The Israeli finance minister pointed out F35 purchase would require a significant shekel outlay for pilot training, hangar construction and maintenance equipment, among other items.

Ironically the LMTs "razor blade" profits would be based on missiles. So, the original F35 negotiations would bar use of missiles produced by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems. In particular, finance ministry took a hard line that the purchase of American missiles would hurt development of new Israeli missile systems.

  1. 15 Fist squadron. Nine First nine F-35s entered operational service in December 6, 2017, with the 140 “Golden Eagles” Squadron, based at Nevatim Airbase near Be’er Sheva. Six more should arrive in 2018.

  2. 10+ to activate a second squadron at Nevatim

F-35 vs S-300 - Iran and Syria

The Israelis were told by leaders that the F-35 would neutralize the threat of S-300 missiles that Russia is under contract to deliver to Iran. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem has said that the deal will destabilize the region.

However the 2016 earliest when F35s to be delivered is well past the date Iran is expected to have operational nuclear weapons, one of the prime reasons for having the F-35.

2020 Aerial Reality changed by Russian Air Force DIRECT Syria Support - S-300 deployed lands F-35s

In reality F35 use hurt by fear of SAM AA-batteries. Since 2017, there have been rumors of the F-35s involvement in these raids, though most of these rumors were likely inaccurate due to the risk of losing an airframe over hostile territory at this stage.

Israel wants deep in enemy territory capability

With F-35 Strike Emphasis helps IDF but scared of losing expensive planes. Tel Aviv wants potential adversaries (chiefly, Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah) to know that its fighters have already proven capable of infiltrating the airspace of neighboring countries, and that its stealth jets could at any moment launch an attack that may go undetected until the first bomb strikes a target.

Israeli Long term Air Force - Patiently Waiting

Some cabinet members have opposed buying more F35s and order should possibly be halved due to concerns about the F-35's range, payload and maneuverability suiting Israel's needs.

2023+ Israel waiting for price reduction, new rules/optimize vulnerabilities to S-400

25 new F-35s on hold? Israel retains the option for an additional twenty-five F-35s to form a third squadron - but recent reports indicated one decade delay for F-15Is instead.

In the future unit cost will supposedly decline to around $85 million.

Israel may be waiting also for resolution of evidence of its detection by S-400 systems - it doesn't want to lose too many pilots and billions. If the F35 is vulnerable, it may want to get new rules of engagement

Trainer and Weapons Officer for Precision Bombing

Israel has also been a proponent of a two-seat variant of the F-35, which would be convenient for training purposes.

Uniquely, with Israel's own missiles this would also allow a back-seat Weapon System Officer to manage the F-35s precision-guided weapons while the pilot focuses on flying.

Second-strike capabilities F35B Jump jets

Israel sees role for jump jets by dispersing them to remote improvised airstrips to avoid enemy air-base attacks.

F-35B is more expensive and has inferior performance to the F-35A for most other purposes. This may explain why an F-35B purchase is allegedly more popular with Israeli politicians than the Israeli Air Force.


0 comments

There are no comments yet

Add new comment

Similar posts

Turkey

Iraq oil and fragmentation Shiites and Kurds

Sphinx Around the World

Catholicism and the Papal Power System in History