TEL AVIV Ñ Israel and the United States are in much closer
coordination to face a war against Iraq than in the 1991 campaign, a report
The Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies said in a report that Israel and
the United States have concluded liasion and early-warning arrangements
based on U.S. satellite coverage over western Iraq.
The report, authored by deputy director Ephraim Kam, asserted that the
United States military has appointed a fulltime liasion with Israel. He is
Gen. Charles Simpson, a senior officer at U.S. European Command who will
spend the war in Israel.
"Coordination with the United States is much more detailed than in
1991," the report said. "There is an understanding that the U.S. will notify
Israel shortly before it commences hostilities. There are also procedures
in place for early warning of Iraqi missile launches: American satellites
will provide constant coverage of western Iraq, and in the event of a
missile launch, Israel will be immediately notified through the American
The report said the Israel will have about four minutes of warning to
protect its citizens from a missile attack. This will give authorities time
to activate sirens, broadcast radio and television alerts, and launch the
Arrow-2 or PAC-2 interceptors.
On Tuesday, Israel deployed the first PAC-2 battery obtained in December
from the United States. The PAC-2 battery was deployed in the Tel Aviv area
and was identified as the improved Gem+ model. Two additional U.S. PAC-2
batteries will be deployed by Israel over the next few days.
The report said Israel has also received two PAC-2 systems from Germany.
The Patriots will provide both anti-missile and anti-aircraft backup for the
Arrow, the report said.
Israel's military has also deployed a command that will quickly respond
to biological or chemical weapons strikes. The report said the Home Front
Command has been trained to identify warhead payloads and evacuate
civilians from contaminated areas.
"Nevertheless, insufficient coordination with local authorities has
raised concern in the defense establishment about the possibility of public
disorder if rapid evacuation of the population is necessary," the report
said. "The defense establishment, which wants to convey a general message of
reassurance, takes exception to the plans of some municipalities in the
greater Tel Aviv area to evacuate to safer areas those citizens who want to
leave; it argues that such plans are superfluous and may well sow panic."