Aviation Week & Space Technology
8/7/2006, Vol. 165, Issue 6
Israel continues to attack Hezbollah's rocket arsenal, but larger and more destructive threats loom
Israel's ability to sustain prolonged around-the-clock air combat operations is partially due to fielding of sophisticated sensors. But the technology advance has not enabled the Israelis to avoid costly targeting missteps, or to suppress the Hezbollah rocket threat or pinpoint the adversary's weapons supplier.
Hezbollah rocket launchers have been a primary target for the Israeli air force's F-15s, F-16s and bevy of unmanned aircraft, which have all been fitted with electro-optical/infrared sensors to spot and engage those targets. And, while launchers are taken down daily, the rate of Hezbollah operations appears unaffected, and there are signs of potential escalation in the projectiles' lethality and range.
Moreover, information gathered by the airborne sensors is raising as many questions as it answers for military planners, particularly when it comes to identifying the main suppliers of weaponry to Hezbollah.