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Sdot Micha Airbase

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Sdot Micha Airbase
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factoids
| type = Military missile base| code =| built = Around 1970| builder =| materials =| height =| used =| demolished =| condition = | ownership = Israeli Air Force| controlledby =| garrison =| commanders =| occupants =| battles =| events =}}Sdot Micha Airbase (in Hebrew: שדות האלה) is an IAF missile base and depot of which existence Israel neither confirms nor denies. It is situated in the center of Israel halfway from Jerusalem to the Mediterranean Sea and extends nearly 13 km from southeast to northwest. The center of the base is located 1.5 km north of the moshav Sdot Micha.

Name

Sdot Micha is not the base' official name since Israel does not announce it, but it is used in most publications worldwide. Sometimes it is also called Sedot Mikha, Zekharia, Zachariah or Zekharyeh according to another nearby moshav. In July 2017 the IDF temporarily admitted the existence of a base called Sdot Ha'ela, but after the press had picked it up, it disappeared from their website again. The IAF hasn't mentioned it at all.NEWS,weblink Israeli Army Reveals Existence of Previously Undisclosed Air Force Base, 20 July 2017, Haaretz, WEB,weblink IDF Reveals (Partially) Existence of Secret Nuclear Base Exposed Here Six Years Ago - Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, 2017-07-18, Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, en-US, 2019-06-10, Ha'ela, Ha-Ela or HaEla is the name of a small stream, running along the south border of moshav Sdot Micha, but falls dry most time of the year. Officially there is no village Ha'ela.

Missiles

It is believed that the base is a missile launch facility for nuclear-tipped Jericho 2 IRBMs and probably Jericho 3 ICBMs. Likely positions of the launch sites with nearby bunkers are {{Coordinate |text=DMS |name=Jericho missile bunkers |NS=31/43/47.9/N |EW=34/55/45.7/E |type=landmark |region=IL-JM }} and {{Coordinate |text=DMS |name=Jericho missile bunkers |NS=31/44/48.5/N |EW=34/56/0.2/E |type=landmark |region=IL-JM }}. Satellite images show these launch areas for mobile missiles very explicitly, which is part of their deterrence.WEB,weblink Jericho 2, Missile Threat, en-US, 2019-06-10, WEB,weblink Jericho 3, Missile Threat, en-US, 2019-06-10, JOURNAL, Kristensen, Hans M., Norris, Robert S., 2014-11-01, Israeli nuclear weapons, 2014,weblink Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 70, 6, 97–115, 10.1177/0096340214555409, 0096-3402, The roads for the mobile missile systems are in between ridges of hills, which has the advantage that the missile bunkers could be digged into the limestone hills around and only need massive doors to protect them from nuclear explosions - direct hits excluded. The missile sites are also hidden there and cannot to be seen from the outside.WEB,weblink Zachariah - Israel - Special Weapons Facilities, www.globalsecurity.org, 2019-06-10, According to Jane's Defence Weekly Sdot Micha is also a location for the new Arrow 3 ABM to intercept (nuclear) missiles coming from Iran. This is a joint venture of Israel and the United States and has been deployed there in the beginning of 2017. Satellite photos show the construction of four bunkers capable to withstand nuclear explosions. In each bunker a mobile launcher with six Arrow 3 missiles can be deployed. The US have accidentally published where the exact locations of the bunkers are: {{Coordinate |text=DMS |name=Vier Arrow 3 Raketenbunker |NS=31/45/18.5/N |EW=34/54/35.6/E |type=landmark |region=IL-JM }}.WEB,weblink Jane's: U.S.-Built $25-Million Base for Israel's Arrow 3 ABM, Built to Counter Iran - Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, 2013-06-04, Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, en-US, 2019-06-10, WEB,weblink U.S. Exposes Location, Layout of Top-Secret Israeli Arrow 3 Missile Base - Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, 2013-06-07, Tikun Olam תיקון עולם, en-US, 2019-06-10, WEB,weblink Arrow 3 Interceptor, www.iai.co.il, 2019-06-10, All larger missiles of Israel are built in the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) MLM Division missile plant in Be'er Ya'akov, 20 km northwest to the base ({{Coordinate |text=DMS |name=MLM Division (IAI) missile plant |NS=31/55/45.1/N |EW=34/50/6.7/E |type=landmark |region=IL }}).WEB,weblink Systems Missiles & Space, www.iai.co.il, 2019-06-10, {{Citation|last=IsraeliPM|title=PM Netanyahu at the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) MLM Division plant|date=2019-01-22|url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-u49OL1b53I|access-date=2019-06-10}} Northwest near the base is also Tel Nof Airbase where F-15 jets can be equipped with nuclear bombs probably stored in the depot of Sdot Micha ({{Coordinate |text=DMS |name=Depots auf Sdot Micha |NS=31/47/45.3/N |EW=34/51/15.2/E |type=landmark |region=IL }}).WEB,weblink IDF / AF - Israel Air Bases, www.cieldegloire.com, 2019-06-10,

History

The base was established around 1970 on the land of the depopulated Palestinian village of Al-Burayj.BOOK, All That Remains: The Palestinian Villages Occupied and Depopulated by Israel in 1948,weblink Walid, Khalidi, Walid Khalidi, 1992, Washington D.C., Institute for Palestine Studies, 0-88728-224-5, 282,

Units

Shavit Ofek7a.jpg|Shavit (civilian Jericho 2) missile launching on June 11. 2007Shavit 3rd stage.JPG|Third stage of a Shavit / Jericho 2 with IAI logoArrow-3 Feb-25-2013 (a).jpg|Test start of an Arrow 3 on February 25. 2013Al-Burayj.jpg|Area of the base 1948 with Arabic Palestinian village Al-BurayjMap Sdot Micha AB.png|Map of the depot and the Sdot Micha Airbase with notable missile sites

See also

References

{{reflist}}

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