[QODLink]
INSIDE STORY
Israel's 'doomsday' drill
Israel has begun its largest-ever defence drill, but the timing has raised suspicions.
Last Modified: 01 Jun 2009 11:09 GMT

Israel has begun its largest-ever defence drill, testing the response of its emergency services to a "doomsday scenario" of rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip and Lebanon and missile attacks from Iran and Syria.

The timing of the drill - just days before the Lebanese go to the polls in a closely-fought election that could see the Hezbollah-led opposition become the new government - has raised suspicions.

The drills also coincide with a regional tour by Barack Obama, the US president, during which he will deliver a keynote speech in Cairo, Egypt.

Israel is under pressure from both the US and Europe to accept a Palestinian state, but also fears a strong Hezbollah in Lebanon and a strong Hamas in Gaza.

Then there is Iran which Israel sees as an imminent "nuclear threat".

But are the drills just a test or are they a dry-run for war? Will they reassure the Israeli public or cause concern about just where their government is taking them?

Professor Mark Heller, a principal research associate at the Institute for National Security Studies, Hisham Jaber, a retired Lebanese army general, and Scott Lucas, a professor of American Studies at Birmingham University and editor of EnduringAmerica.com, join the show to discuss.

This episode of Inside Story aired on Sunday, May 31, 2009.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
Activists say 'Honor Diaries' documentary exploits gender-based violence to further an anti-Islamic agenda.
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
join our mailing list