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United States The Military

US and Israel Test Missile As Syria War Tensions Rise 227

Posted by Soulskill
from the nothing-to-see-here-just-randomly-firing-missiles dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Joshua Mitnick reports that Israel and the U.S. carried out a missile test over the Mediterranean Sea on Tuesday morning that was detected by Russian surveillance systems. Israel's defense ministry eventually said a Sparrow rocket had been fired to simulate a ballistic missile attack on the Jewish state to test the Arrow interceptor system. The Arrow – which wasn't fired Tuesday – has been developed to defend against long range rockets primarily from Iran, a main patron of the Syrian regime. Arieh Herzog, a former Israeli missile defense director, says that the Sparrow missile is developed to simulate 'the worst threats' in the region so Israel can hone the capabilities of the Arrow III missile interceptor. Herzog speculated that the launch Tuesday was done at a considerably long range. Another Israeli expert said the incident could be seen as muscle flexing by the U.S. and Israel. 'You could say perhaps its show of strength to Syria and its Iranian ally — that Israel has a range of options at its disposal. And to place pressure on Assad and Iran that Israel takes [retaliation threats] seriously,' says Meir Javedanfar, a lecturer on Iranian politics at the Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center. Pentagon press secretary George Little said the U.S. 'provided technical assistance and support to the Israeli Missile Defense Organization flight test of a Sparrow target missile over the Mediterranean Sea.' 'The United States and Israel cooperate on a number of long-term ballistic missile defense development projects to address common challenges in the region,' added Little. 'This test had nothing to do with United States consideration of military action to respond to Syria's chemical weapons attack.'"
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US and Israel Test Missile As Syria War Tensions Rise

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  • Childish (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AmiMoJo (196126) * <(mojo) (at) (world3.net)> on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @08:27AM (#44755179) Homepage

    I'm just swinging my fist 1mm from your face, I'm not touching you, you can't stop me, there's no law against swinging your arms, stop touching my hands with your face, ha ha ha!

    Except that in this case instead of getting kicked by an irate sibling some stuff might be blown up.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yeah that's the typical American attitude. Reminds me of their cops in full SWAT uniform with 5 of his buddies repeatedly slamming someone's face into the ground while yelling "STOP RESISTING!". And THEN they charge you for assaulting an officer, for bleeding on him.

      You know the US has milked 9/11 so much it makes me sick. Sept 12 2001, America had the world's sympathy. Those days are long long gone. In fact many are now thinking it's time America got put in its place. Either stop the constant aggression,

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @08:31AM (#44755205)

    By Missile we mean Democracy Spreading Device.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @08:35AM (#44755221)

    Why don't we stay the fuck out of syria. Neither side likes us. We can't 'win' anything.
    We're going to piss away a bunch more lives and money we don't have, for what?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by c0lo (1497653)

      Why don't we stay the fuck out of syria. Neither side likes us. We can't 'win' anything.
      We're going to piss away a bunch more lives and money we don't have, for what?

      Because Israel was always under threat from Iran/Syria and... surprise... the house of Saudi doesn't like them either (Sunni vs Shia). So, they need somebody with enough clout to handle the hot potato, even against UN council, and the US of A seem vain [globalresearch.ca] (or, is it moronic already?) enough to think they can do it, perhaps even doing it alone.
      This will be a good business period for Saudis (selling more oil) and Russia (keeping Syria armed enough), awful for Turkey, Lebanon and possibly Jordan (dealing with re

      • by Dunbal (464142) *
        Under threat? Tell me when the last Israeli-Syrian war was again? That's like saying the US is always under threat from Mexico. You realize at one point you have to have neighbors, right?
        • by c0lo (1497653) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @10:14AM (#44756087)

          Syria - Shia/Alawite govt in spite of a Sunni majority (which is what irritates Saudi Arabia), sustained in power mainly by Iranian support. Now, I wonder if you remember this [theworld.org]?

          Other than that, if you really want to lose your mind, have a nice day, sir. [washingtonpost.com]

          I really think the best strategic move for USA is to stay out of it: in such a nightmarish overlapping/conflicting seas of interest, it wouldn't take too much for the players to want a simplification: what would be easier than to explain to a population driven crazy by war than "The US devils are to blame" - they'll forget quite quckly about their internal quibbles.

        • by Teancum (67324) <robert_horning@n ... ro.net minus bsd> on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @10:14AM (#44756093) Homepage Journal

          Under threat? Tell me when the last Israeli-Syrian war was again? That's like saying the US is always under threat from Mexico. You realize at one point you have to have neighbors, right?

          The last Israeli-Syrian war was in 1973... formally. There have been almost continual exchanges of fire between the two countries since that war, however. During most of the several invasions of Lebanon that happened later, Syria backed one or more of the groups involved (Lebanon has been a total basket case of a country for some time). It also doesn't help that from a Syrian point of view Israel is sitting on some of their land (the Golan Heights specifically) and wouldn't mind taking some of that back if the opportunity presented itself. There isn't really much trade that moves between Israel and Syria as well I might add.

          Then again there is talk of the "reconquista" in Mexico too, but that is based off of a claim from a war that happened 170 years ago and isn't really taken all that seriously for a great many reasons.

          • by cayenne8 (626475)

            Then again there is talk of the "reconquista" in Mexico too...

            Hey, we might as well...

            I mean, we've got most of the people over here, why shouldn't we get the land that goes with them too?

            :)

        • by jedidiah (1196)

          > Tell me when the last Israeli-Syrian war was again?

          The last one never really ended.

          The only one of Israels neighbors that ever actually formally declared an end to hostilities is Egypt.

          Carter gets lots of "street cred" for being the guy that brokered that treaty. You remember Carter? He still wanders around the world building houses for poor people and making speeches at national monuments.

          Hardly comparable to a war that ended 150 years ago.

    • by dywolf (2673597) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @09:59AM (#44755939)

      Uh, Syria was until quite recently one of our supporters in the region. We've had generally decent to good relations with the Assad regime. It cooled a bit since he started killing his people, but we tend to take a dim view of those who would kill their people because they started talkng democracy.

      • by Teancum (67324) <robert_horning@n ... ro.net minus bsd> on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @10:25AM (#44756199) Homepage Journal

        Uh, Syria was until quite recently one of our supporters in the region. We've had generally decent to good relations with the Assad regime. It cooled a bit since he started killing his people, but we tend to take a dim view of those who would kill their people because they started talkng democracy.

        A fair point to make. Even more oddly is how Syria was even a military allay during the Gulf War.... where Syria fielded a full division of soldiers and took orders directly from an American general (Schwarzkopf) in that war.

        The funny thing about Syria is how there are numerous photos and videos of Assad having dinner with both John Kerry and Barack Obama, not to mention an official state visit by Assad to the White House.... and Obama going to Syria himself. Yeah, it was a close relationship. You wonder what Assad did to piss off the Obama administration?

        No I don't think the gas attack, at least by itself, was the act. Heck, the Obama administration has been funding "rebels" in Syria for awhile now... well before that supposed gas attack.

        • by c0lo (1497653)

          Yeah, it was a close relationship. You wonder what Assad did to piss off the Obama administration?

          He did nothing; others, however, may have made an offer US seems unable to refuse.

    • by RoknrolZombie (2504888) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @11:08AM (#44756661)

      To distract the rest of the world from our spying programs.

    • by cayenne8 (626475)

      Why don't we stay the fuck out of syria. Neither side likes us. We can't 'win' anything. We're going to piss away a bunch more lives and money we don't have, for what?

      I think as much as anything else...it is because Obama shot his mouth off about drawing a "Red Line" in the sand without first thinking through the implications.

      If he doesn't act, he loses face in the world theater.

      I think it may also be as much about his ego as anything else.

  • News agencies in South EU mentioned that when the Russians spotted the missile in the morning, the US denied the incident (i.e. "what missile"). Later in that afternoon (local time) Israel and the US confirmed that it was part of a joined drill.

    'This test had nothing to do with United States consideration of military action to respond to Syria's chemical weapons attack.'

    HAHAHHAHHAHA

    • Pretty much. Sparrow missile, which is normally air-to-air and radar-guided, fired on a ballistic path toward an ally, so the ally could calibrate the radar (can't see any other test of an anti-missile system that does NOT fire that makes any sense).

      Big whoop....

  • by CajunArson (465943) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @08:45AM (#44755291) Journal

    Now that Dear Leader Obama is the president and has decided that we all need to give war a chance, NPR has taken to calling anyone who doesn't want his war to be an "isolationist."

      You'll note that this term was never used against people who disagreed with wars in Afghanistan or Iraq... instead those people were "anti-war" or "pro-peace". We basically need another Republican as president so that the press can go back to attacking the president instead of being his trained lapdog.

    • by Sponge Bath (413667) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @08:58AM (#44755385)

      You'll note that this term was never used against people who disagreed with wars in Afghanistan or Iraq...

      Yeah, they were called traitors by the same right wing propaganda outlets you get your talking points from. Can you be anymore obvious?

    • by dywolf (2673597)

      again, you're conflating those who say one thing now with those who said another thing before, in order to put a left/right them/us spin on it.
      most of the people saying one thing now, said the same thing before. most of us actualyl have principles that we stick to (not counting politicians)

    • If you were against the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, you were a terrorist or pro-terrorists by Bush's statements. Did you forget the whole "you are either for us or against us" speech used and intended to stifle questioning policy? MSM labelled many people unpatriotic as well as pro-terrorist.

    • Now that Dear Leader Obama is the president and has decided that we all need to give war a chance, NPR has taken to calling anyone who doesn't want his war to be an "isolationist."

      You'll note that this term was never used against people who disagreed with wars in Afghanistan or Iraq... instead those people were "anti-war" or "pro-peace". We basically need another Republican as president so that the press can go back to attacking the president instead of being his trained lapdog.

      Troll much?

  • Firing a missile over the Mediterranean Sea, unannounced, with all of the threats of a US strike on Syria. What could possibly go wrong?

    Or perhaps the idea was to see if someone would fire back. It sure would be a lot more convenient to fire off a bunch of Tomahawks "in self defense" right now.

    • by LWATCDR (28044) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @09:31AM (#44755649) Homepage Journal

      1. There was a NOTAM filed for the test. It was not unannounced. Russia just said they detected it and not that they where surprised by it.
      2. This is an anti-ballistic missile that was tested and not a ground attack missile. It shoots down other missiles. AKA it is a defensive weapon.
      I have to wonder if this is why we have not found any other intelligent life. Once a planet develops the internet people find news sources that reinforce their world view and fears. As a group we become dumb and dumber because we keep seeking sources that tell us we are right. The divisions become greater and greater and people dumb and less tolerant all the while believing they are more informed and open minded until it all falls apart.

      • by timeOday (582209)

        It shoots down other missiles. AKA it is a defensive weapon.

        A "defensive" weapon. What does that even mean, when the context here is explicitly that of repelling a counter-attack to our first strike?

        • by EnsilZah (575600)

          It means that it specifically targets incoming missiles, in fact so specific that Israel has at least three different systems for different classes of projectiles.

          And while Israel is perfectly fine with staying out of conflicts fought between the different brands of Arabs and Muslims (who usually proceed to accuse each other of being in league with Israel anyway) it seems that since we're the only target in reach, we're the ones who are going to be repelling a potential counter attack to your first strike.
          S

          • by LWATCDR (28044)

            So how does it feel to be the boogieman? I really do not mean to make light of it but frankly if the Jewish people had as much power as some groups gave them credit for I think their history would have been very different.
            Maybe after WWII the US should have just offered North Dakota as the Jewish homeland. Then you would only have to deal with cows, Minnesota Norwegian Framer Lutherans, the 8 people that lived in South Dakota, the 6 people that lived in Montana and the Canadians. As a bonus I could get get

      • Wow, if what you posted is correct score one more for 21st century Slashdot dumbing down the conversation. About 50% of the discussion here is predicated on both those points being unknown.

        • by LWATCDR (28044)

          Yes it is correct. Also the test missile was air launched by an IAF F-15 and is made by Israel. The Arrow is a joint US Israeli project but the US probably had little to do with the test. We did not launch the target or the interceptor. The target would look nothing like a cruise missile so it would not be likely to be mistaken for one it is even unlikely that Syria would detect it. Russia detected it because they were working hard to monitor the test. AKA spying. The thing that every nation does.
          It is not

    • by EnsilZah (575600)

      Disclaimer: I live in Israel.

      Fire back where exactly, at the sea, for a missile not aimed at anyone?
      I'd think there's a little bit more subtlety to these things than "OMG, missile launch detected, quick, fire everything we've got at everyone we don't like!".
      And while the situation might be a bit tense at the moment in the area, that is often the case, and missile tests are still done, satellites are still launched and military drills still performed, often without prior notice to anyone who might be interes

  • by rastos1 (601318) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @09:02AM (#44755429) Homepage

    First: shortly after Russia reported that they detected a missile launch, Pentagon denied having anything to do with that. Now it is reported that both USA and Israel conducted the test together. Is USA just stepping in for Israel? Don't they not even pretend to be impartial?

    Second: who in their right mind approves to test a ballistic missile in Syria's backyard in this situation? Do they also give matches to kids with "go, play somewhere in some stacked hay"?

  • by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @09:36AM (#44755671)

    The US fired the missile unannounced . . . to see if the Russian surveillance systems could spot it . . . and if the Russians could warn their Syrian pals about it.

    They're just probing the target's defenses at this point. Nothing new here. The US military folks just want to see how good the Russian made stuff is, before they do anything for real.

    • by LWATCDR (28044)

      It was not unannounced. NOTAMs where filed. Nowere was it said that it was unannounced.

    • I thought that comic was simplistic. The international community has a limited mandate for intervening in the affairs of another country. Take away from that what offenses are severe enough to rally a group of nations willing to use force and commit enough resources to do something substantial. It's not like people are sitting around not caring about what's been going on in Syria.

  • 'This test had nothing to do with United States consideration of military action to respond to Syria's chemical weapons attack.'

    I'm sure it was, um, just a coincidence. Yeah, that's it, a coincidence. A previously scheduled anti-missile test that just happened to not actually test the "anti" part of the anti-missile system.

  • Of course it's not coincidence. The test may have been planned for months but Israel would have pushed up the deadline on any such testing. They would be rightfully concerned about what may happen in the next few weeks, since they are on the front lines. If they can do anything to prepare for retaliatory attacks launched from Syria (or Iran), they will be doing it. I suspect Turkey is doing the same, as is everyone else in the region who happens to be affiliated, in any way, with U.S. interests.
  • Is 'limited strike' against Syria something like how Osama launched a 'limited strike' against the USA by striking the WTC?

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