Published On: Sun, Apr 19th, 2015

Elbit Gave the IDF Hamas Terror Tunnel Detection System

"It could really improve personal security."

IDF Paratroopers over tunnel opening

Israel’s defense firm Elbit Systems has developed a new tunnel detection system which is reportedly going to be deployed along Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip.

During last summer’s conflict in Gaza the Israeli Defense Forces lost a number of soldiers while it worked to clear out tunnels that the terrorist group Hamas had dug into Israeli territory. The tunnels were used to conduct terrorist raids into Israel, such as the one in 2006 which killed several armored soldiers and led to the capture of one, Gilad Shalit.

Israeli residents of settlements along the border with Gaza, known in Hebrew as “Otef Aza” or wrapping Gaza, live in fear that the Hamas is rebuilding its tunnels into Israel.

Now comes word that the IDF will have the ability to detect such tunnels in the future and be able to destroy them before they can be completed.

But it will not come cheaply. According to reports, it will cost anywhere from $1 to $2 million per kilometer to deploy. The price range is due to differences in the area around the border.

An IDF reserve colonel who formerly commanded a unit tasked with destroying such tunnels, Atai Shelach, explained to Newsweek, “[the problem] will be solved by an evolution of technologies, intelligence and operational acts. This is the triangle. We won’t find the golden answer in technology, we won’t find the golden answer in operational acts and we won’t find the golden answer in intelligence. It’s a combination and the missing link is technology.”

Explaining the need for keeping how the technology works a secret Shelach added, “As long as we can keep it quiet it’s better because it’s an operational act and to terrorists it is like water, they are looking for the hole that they can lick. Sometimes me and others make mistakes and talk too much.”

Amit Caspi, who lives in a kibbutz along the border with Gaza, said, “The tunnel threat for us is a threat on the community’s morale. Because of the nature of its danger, the surprise factor and the inability to defend oneself, it truly constitutes a personal threat. For us it registered as an insolvable threat so if there is a breakthrough here, even though we know that there is never 100% on this matter, it could really improve personal security.”

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