For years, the border towns and kibbutzim in the upper Golan section of Israel, near Lebanon and Syria, have been under threat from Katyusha missiles. Cities just a few miles further south -- like Haifa and Tsfat, the crumbling, quiet mountaintop home of Jewish mysticism -- were safe; relying on short-range Katyusha rockets, Lebanese militants had the ability to sew terror only twelve miles into Israel. That changed on Thursday, when Hezbollah launched a new weapon, the Ra'ad rocket, which hit Tsfat and, for the first time, Haifa, 20 miles from the border. 220,000 Israelis stayed in bomb shelters last night to avoid the missiles, Ha'Aretz reports.The exact make-up and configuration of these weapons is unclear. Some sources call it a modified anti-tank rocket; others a cruise missile. Range estimates vary from 120 to 350 kilometers, or more. One report calls it a 122mm projectile. Hezbollah claims the Iranian-made "rocket is of 333 mm in diameter and has a warhead of 100 kilograms."Hezbollah's arsenal is likely filled with even deadlier weapons. Israel believes the terrorist group "has missiles that can hit most of Israel, and which could even strike Be'er Sheva [deep in Israel's southern, Negev desert] under optimum conditions," Ha'Aretz notes.
Iran supplied Hezbollah with solid-fuel, Zelzal-2 missiles with a 200-km range, but these are not very accurate, since they do not have a self-guidance system.The Zelzal-2 missiles, intended to strike broad targets such as communities and cities, are equipped with explosive warheads weighing up to 600 kilograms...Hezbollah's original Katyusha rockets had a range of 12 kilometers to 22 kilometers. At a later stage, it obtained Iranian Fajar-3 and Fajar-5 rockets, with a range of 45 kilometers and 75 kilometers, respectively. Hezbollah did not use these rockets until the current conflict.I was supposed to spend my honeymoon next month lounging around Haifa, hiking in the Golan, maybe spending the sabbath in Tsfat. Now, these Hezbollah weapons have introduced a new calculus: how much fear is my wife willing to take?(Big ups: Roggio, Umansky)