On March 1, 2011 an Israeli Merkava IV tank on patrol along the Gaza periphery was fired upon by Hamas terrorists from concealed positions within Gaza. Using a deadly RPG-29, a more advanced version of the RPG-7, the terrorists waited for impact. But their moment of glory never transpired. As the anti-tank projectile neared its target, a revolutionary platform – the Trophy Armor Protection System (APS) – deployed on the Merkava IV detected the threat and instantly fired a number of pellets at the deadly menace, destroying and rendering it inert yards from the tank.
Barely three weeks later, Hamas terrorists experienced further failure. They once again attempted to engage a Trophy-equipped Merkava IV. This time, the Trophy calculated the missile’s trajectory and determined that the missile posed no threat, allowing it pass along harmlessly. But that wasn’t the end of the story. Based on the missiles flight path, the Trohy was able to determine the source of fire and transmitted the coordinates to the tank’s crew as well as to nearby units who instantly directed their accurate counter-fire toward the source of the attack, causing at least one terrorist casualty.
The Israeli made Trophy APS had instantly revolutionized armored warfare. It was the first time that such a system had been successfully deployed in battle and the results elated the army’s top brass as well as Trophy’s designers, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries’ Elta Group. No longer would an armored vehicle have to rely on its own armor to defend against anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM) and other forms of anti-tank threats. Tanks and other vehicles, such as armored personnel carriers and even HUMVEEs would henceforth go into battle with an active protection system designed to swat anti-tank missiles, shells and rockets as though they were pesky mosquitos.
Trophy works like a mini Iron Dome, another Israeli wonder weapon that intercepts and neutralizes short-range rocket threats, like Russian GRAD rockets, from the skies. It utilizes a combination of sensors and radar along with fire control technology and intercepting pellets to detect and neutralize incoming missile threats. A secondary feature enables the Trophy to accurately determine the source of fire and transmit the coordinates to nearby ground and air units through the Tzayad battlefield management system. All friendly units in the theater are instantly apprised of the enemy’s position making escape and evasion difficult.
Trophy proved its mettle once more during Operation Protective Edge, a seven-week counter insurgency campaign undertaken by the Israel Defense Forces against the Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza during the summer of 2014. During the operation, Trophy succeeded beyond all expectations, intercepting a variety of anti-tank threats. In fact, according to IDF sources, the Trophy system intercepted no less than 15 anti-tank missiles and rockets including the deadly Russian Kornet missile which is believed to be capable of penetrating 3.9 feet of armor and has a range of about 5,500 yards.
These missiles were used by the Iraqi army against American M1 Abrams tanks during Operation Iraqi Freedom and by Hezbollah against Israeli Merkava tanks during the Second Lebanon War. The Trophy system is an outgrowth of the Israeli experience during the Second Lebanon War and became operational some four years later. By 2010, an entire battalion of Merkava IV tanks had been outfitted with the Trophy. The Trophy has also been adopted for use in Israeli Namer & Eitan armored personnel carriers and there are plans in the works for deployment on naval craft.
Despite its revolutionary design features and battle-tested capabilities, the United States Army was initially hesitant in adopting the Trophy APS, preferring instead to see how a locally produced variant performed. But a confluence of emerging threats coupled with a new, no-nonsense attitude adopted by Trump’s secretary of defense, James Mattis, has finally convinced the U.S. Army to adopt the Trophy APS for its M1A2 tanks, at least in limited numbers.
A Trophy-equipped brigade of over 80 Abrams tanks is slated to be deployed to the European theater by 2020 to counter recent Russian aggressive actions, which include the seizure and occupation of Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine as well as menacing, large-scale military exercises including one ominously code-named, “Zapad 17.” Zapad is Russian for “West.”
Some U.S. Army Abrams tanks are fitted with reactive armor tile, which is designed to deflect the penetrating blast away from tanks. That system has proved to be effective against some rocket and missile threats but later generation missiles, such as the Kornet, are equipped with tandem or dual warheads. The first charge destroys the tanks protective reactive armor allowing the second and more lethal charge to hit the tank.
According to Col. Glenn Dean, the Project Manager of the Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Combat Ground Systems, of live-fire testing at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama, the Israeli Trophy APS “exceeded [his] expectations.” He noted that during testing, he “tried to kill the Abrams tank 48 times and failed.” New procedures adopted by the Department of Defense allowed for a streamlined acquisitions process, bypassing the usual bureaucratic red tape resulting in quicker deployment of the Trophy.
The U.S. and Israeli militaries have always maintained close ties despite malevolent efforts by the Obama administration to sour relations. The two militaries share common symmetrical and asymmetrical threats and represent beacons of strength and stability in a world threatened by apocalyptic mullahs and petty dictators with imperialistic designs. The acquisition of the Trophy by the U.S. military further underscores the closeness of the relationship and advances the shared interests of two great democracies with winning traditions.
African business leaders meet with officials from the Israeli company Ashra as part of the American Jewish Committee’s Project Interchange tour of the Jewish state. (Credit: American Jewish Committee/)|
A delegation of 10 African business leaders and entrepreneurs are touring Israel as part of an effort to grow further business and development ties between the Jewish state and sub-Saharan Africa.
Fremale tank commander at helm (Photo courtesy IDF)
On Thursday, the first four female tank commanders complete the Armored Corps’s tank commanders course. The four armored combat soldiers underwent 16 weeks of training at the 460 Brigade and successfully completed the course.
Armored Corps Chief Brigadier General Guy Hasson stated: “After a year and four months of experience, we can say with certainty that an armored combat team under the command of a female tank commander is capable of carrying out operational activity as part of the border defense system.”
Astronaut Randolf Bresnik tweeted this photo of Israel from space. (@AstroKomrade/Twitter)
Israel was ranked the eighth most powerful country in the world, according to US News & World Report magazine’s 2018 best country rankings. With few natural resources and surrounded by sworn enemies, one entrepreneur is convinced that it is Israel’s destined role as a Light Unto the Nations that has fueled this rise to the top.
The ranking, measuring a country’s diplomatic, economic and military might, placed the tiny Jewish State ahead of most European countries, Australia, Canada, and all of the Arab countries. One of the major factors for placing Israel so high on the list was its role as a leader in global technology.
New reports reveal the connections between BDS and Islamic terrorists.
Those were the words of Ismail Haniyeh, a former Hamas prime minister and the head of its Politburo. And they revealed that Hamas considers BDS to be a component of its strategy for destroying Israel.
Even as Hamas continues the violence against Israel, it has gone on cheering BDS.
Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar puts the release of Palestinian prisoners in Israel ahead of any proposals to ease the decadelong siege on the Gaza Strip.
Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar (C) shouts slogans as he takes part in a tent city protest near the border with Israel, east of Jabaliya in the northern Gaza Strip, March 30, 2018.
When the Oslo deal that would create two Islamic terror states inside Israel came up for a vote in the Knesset, the legislator whose vote helped it pass is the same man now accused of spying for Iran.
The strange story of Gonen Segev, doctor, Minister of Energy, drug smuggler, Nigerian exile and now accused Iranian spy, is also that of the dirty politics behind the peace process. It wasn’t idealism that made the deal with the PLO. It was dirty backroom deals with dangerously unprincipled politicians.
For years, Israel’s Right has asserted that the Supreme Court tilts sharply Left, treating Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria in an unfair and even unjust manner. Time and again, politicians and pundits have argued that behind their pronouncements of principle, the justices were in fact often motivated by political agendas.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Although nuclear strategy must, by definition, be shaped without historical precedent, it should contain certain ancient core concepts. The strategic postulates first laid down by Sun Tzu could be referenced usefully by the current architects of US nuclear strategy, especially with reference to an already nuclear North Korea, and to a plausibly future nuclear adversary in Iran.
Last week, in Kibbutz Beit HaEmek in northern Israel, a vote was held in order to decide whether three single parent asylum seekers and their children should be allowed to stay there.
With a majority of 92 against 87, the decision was made against their absorption. It’s not just any Kibbutz but one with an especially high percentage of Meretz voters.
TEL AVIV – What do Israelis think of the idea of Israel winning and the Palestinians losing?
It’s a radical idea, very different from the 50-year-and-counting win-win assumption of “land for peace” that has transfixed governments and monopolized their attention. That old idea holds that putting Palestinians and Israelis in a room together will prompt them to settle their differences. On the cusp of the Oslo Accords’