Israeli home defense drill to focus on missile and chemical threats

Home Defense Minister Gilead Erdan disclosed Tuesday that the annual “Steadfast Home Front – 1” exercise starting next Sunday will postulate equal risks to the military and home fronts. He said this eventuality was only now a question of time.

Addressing a news conference, the minister said the exercise would stage scenarios of large population centers and strategic facilities under attack from thousands of missiles from Syria, Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. Chemical strikes will also be rehearsed. Maj.Gen. Eyal Eisenberg, head of the IDF Home Front Command, said a chemical strike would challenge the IDF’s command and control capacity. The IDF is keeping a close watch on events in Syria from the northern border, he said. “We wouldn’t be practicing a massive missile war scenario unless we believed the enemy had the operational capability to attack Israel’s civilian population.

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