Narendra Modi Israel visit: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday left for his three-day Israel tour, becoming the first Indian PM to visit the Jewish nation. PM Modi will be in Israel until July 6 and is likely to discuss common challenges like terrorism, cement defence ties and find ways to boost economic ties. “I begin a historic visit to Israel, a very special partner of India’s… As the first Indian prime minister to do so, I am greatly looking forward to this unprecedented visit that will bring our two countries and people closer,” he had before leaving. Israel is known for its military prowess as well as its huge state-of-the-art arsenal that has deterred enemy forces since its very formation. In fact, the Israeli Army has seen combat every decade since its founding. So, as the Prime Minister gets set for his historic trip, let’s have a look at the killer weapons in possession of this Middle Eastern country:
1. Merkava Main Battle Tank
The Merkava, Israel’s first and the only indigenous main battle tank is also its pride. A brainchild of General Israel Tal, chief of the Armored Forces, it was especially designed for Israeli tank doctrine: low to ground with a powerful gun. The newer versions of this tank are armed with a locally produced 120-millimeter smoothbore gun and the main gun is accurate to at least 2,000 meters with High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) and Armored Piercing (AP) rounds.
2. Spike Missile System
One of a kind, Spike Missile is Israel’s one-design-fits-all anti-tank guided missile system. It can be mounted on almost everything from the ground to Seraph (Apache) helicopters, naval vessels, and drones. It can be used against tanks and armoured vehicles, ships, aircraft, and even individual high-value terrorist targets.
3. AH-64 Seraph (Winged Serpent)
The Israeli Army is equipped with 42 AH-64A Apache attack helicopters. They have been used for many anti-terrorism campaigns and recent conflicts. Israel has used the Seraph to conduct strikes in urban areas, against terrorist targets hiding among civilian populations. These helicopters have been credited for bringing down many Hamas and Hezbollah leaders.
4. Namer Armored Personnel Carrier
An early model of Merkava Mk.1 tank, Namer is equipped with a turret, has the main gun removed and an enormous amount of armour applied to the front glacis, sides and side skirts. It weighs almost equal to a Mervaka before customisation. It has a crew of three, including driver, remote weapons station operator, and commander and can carry up to nine infantrymen.
5. F-15A/C-Baz (Falcon)
Coming back to the air power, F-15A/C-Baz have given Israel a supremacy over other countries in the air. Between 1976 and the end of the 1982 Lebanon war, Israeli F-15s shot down 58 enemy planes with zero losses. Since then, many F-15As have been upgraded to F-15Cs and continue to provide air superiority for Israel.