Israeli iron dome interceptors fill sky in rocket attack
- The Israel Defense Forces released a video of their Iron Dome system shooting down rockets on Tuesday.
- Hamas fired the rockets amid heightened tensions and fighting that has already claimed dozens of lives.
- Long-standing tensions have recently been fueled by planned expulsions of Palestinians in East Jerusalem.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) released video of their Iron Dome air defense system filling the skies with interceptors as more than 100 rockets rained down on Tel Aviv and central Israel on Tuesday evening, the latest in a series of rocket attacks over the past two days.
Tensions between Israel and Hamas soared this week as Palestinian militants began firing rockets at Israel on Monday evening and Israel carried out airstrikes on targets in Gaza in a serious escalation of violence.
The recent fighting appears to be among the most intense since the 2014 conflict, and has already claimed dozens of lives, the Associated Press reported. Although there have been casualties on both sides, the majority of casualties have been on the Palestinian side, and the dead include both combatants and civilians.
During Tuesday’s fighting, an Israeli airstrike struck a high-rise Hamas-controlled office and residential building. Although the occupiers were warned to evacuate, an IDF spokesperson said that “we expect this powerful attack on the skyscraper, which rocked all of Gaza, will lead to a lot of fire in the direction of Gaza. ‘Israel,’ according to Haaretz.
—Amichai Stein (@ AmihaiStein1) May 11, 2021
“Al-Qassam Brigades launched largest missile strike on Tel Aviv and surrounding areas, with 130 missiles, in response to enemy targeting of civilian skyscrapers,” Hamas said in a statement Tuesday evening. , The Times of Israel reported.
The IDF posted a video of its defense of the city and surrounding area on Twitter.
—Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 11, 2021
Another angle of the Tel Aviv defense was posted by a former IDF spokesperson.
—Avi Mayer (@AviMayer) May 11, 2021
The Israeli Iron Dome is a short-range air defense system designed to intercept rockets, artillery, and mortars. The system has been in use since 2011 and has helped reduce the death toll from rocket attacks on Israeli cities.
The air defense system was developed by Israeli defense companies Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries with support from the United States. It works alongside David’s Sling and Arrow interceptors, which are in place to counter medium and long range threats.
It is considered a very efficient system, with a reported success rate of over 90%, but it is not impenetrable. Some rockets managed to pass and killed people.
—Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 11, 2021
The video released on Tuesday was not the first video of the Iron Dome defending itself against recent rocket attacks. On Monday, the IDF posted a video of its defense against a Hamas rocket attack on Ashkelon on its official Twitter account.
—Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 10, 2021
The recent escalation in violence, which took place during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, is due to a number of historical and immediate factors.
Long-standing territorial control issues remain at the center of much of the animosity, but more recently, planned expulsions of Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem have fueled tensions and sparked protests.
Before the latest firefight, Israeli police raided the grounds of Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, one of Islam’s holiest sites. Police fired rubber-coated bullets, stun grenades and tear gas into the compound, Reuters reported. While 21 officers were injured, more than 300 Palestinians were injured in the process, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent.
At least 28 Palestinians were killed in Israeli airstrikes on Tuesday, including ten children and a woman, the Associated Press reported. At least three Israelis have been killed by rockets fired by militant groups in Gaza. The wounds caused by the fighting number in the hundreds.
“Any loss of civilian life is deeply lamentable, whether it is Israeli or Palestinian life,” Ned Price, a spokesperson for the US State Department, said on Tuesday, adding: “C that is why we continue to call for calm, continue to call on all sides to defuse and show restraint. “
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that Israel “will increase both the intensity of attacks and the rate of attacks.” In a subsequent statement, he said Hamas “will pay a heavy price for their belligerence.”