Israel continues to develop land-based intermediate range ICBM capacity for regional deterrence
This morning a missile launch from the missile test site in Palmachim just south of Tel Aviv was clearly visible across the lazure Israeli skies. Israeli government issued a terse statement saying that this was a “scheduled” test of a “missile propulsion system” and that the test “went as planned”. Commentators assume that the “went as planned” part suggests that the test had been a success and that the trajectory and visibility of the plume suggest a heavy missile akin to the Jericho III, which is capable of delivering a one ton payload to a distance of 2,000 kilometers (over 1,200 miles), putting all of Iran well within its range. According to foreign sources, Jericho III missiles are fully nuclear-capable and form the land leg of the Israeli nuclear triad.
The test may indicate that a new and improved ballistic missile of intermediate range is under development, a clear signal to Tehran that Israel will not rely on its defensive capabilities alone in the case of an Iranian attack on its vital interests.
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