IDF: Thousands of Rockets, High Casualties in Future Hezbollah Attack

Gili Cohen
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A Haifa building damaged in a rocket attack during the Second Lebanon War in 2006.Credit: Nir Kafri
Gili Cohen

Hundreds or even thousands of rockets could be fired at Israel every day in a future war with Hezbollah, causing large-scale casualties, according to a new assessment by the Home Front Command.

That scenario was revealed Tuesday by outgoing Home Front commander Maj. Gen. Eyal Eizenberg, who said that the population of Israel needed to be prepared to face the challenge of hundreds of fatalities from rocket barrages.

"We need to prepare for the possibility of a 'blitz' which could lead to between 1,000 to 1,500 rockets falling on Israel daily," Eizenberg said.

However, appropriate behavior by the civilian population will limit the number of casualties, Eizenberg added.

The Home Front Command recently updated its assessment of a possible attack by Hezbollah and has begun distributing it to local authorities throughout the country.

In light of the assessment, the command is preparing for the possibility of massive civilian evacuations. Official plans for civilian evacuations are being drawn up, though they won't be made public.

In the event of a confrontation, the Home Front Command will be ready to either evacuate civilians temporarily to army camps or to implement a wide-scale national plan for the evacuation of entire communities.

According to the Home Front's data, 27 percent of the population doesn't have any protection at all, Eizenberg said.

The scenario of an attack on Kiryat Bialik, for example, assumes dozens of rocket landings on an average day, hundreds of civilians evacuated, a small number of fatalities, dozens of moderately to seriously wounded and hundreds of cases of panic.

Asked whether it would not have been better to evacuate the settlements on the Gaza border during last year's war, Eizenberg said that he didn’t think it was the "place to discuss what might have been, but we learn from every operational event."

Eizenberg is due to be replaced shortly by Maj. Gen. Yoel Strick.

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