Operation "Outside the Box" declassified

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basher54321

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Unread post22 Mar 2018, 22:09

The attack operation began 30 minutes before midnight on Sept. 5, 2007, with four F-15Is from Squadron 69 and two pairs of F-16Is ― from Squadron 119 and Squadron 253 ― taking off from the southern Hatzerim and Ramon air bases. By 2:30 a.m. on Sept. 6, after Israel verified that the reactor was destroyed “beyond any chance of rehabilitation,” all eight planes returned safely to base.

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That’s the message behind Israel’s first-ever official account of its operation Outside the Box, the four-hour mission that began before midnight on Sep. 5, 2007, to destroy Syria’s top-secret and nearly operational al-Kibar nuclear facility just weeks before it went hot.

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Until Wednesday’s release of newly declassified documents and images from the operation, Israel had never acknowledged the eight front-line fighters that delivered nearly 20 tons of ground-penetrating explosives on the reactor concealed deep in a ravine near the Euphrates River in northeastern Syria. To this day, despite the International Atomic Energy Agency’s evidence to the contrary, the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad continues to deny that the site built with the assistance of North Korea was a nuclear facility.

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Despite media and think tank reports based on WikiLeaks documents, U.S. congressional testimony and even reference to the event contained in the 2010 memoir by former U.S. President George W. Bush, Israel’s military censor continued to impose blanket gags on all details surrounding the operation.

For more than a decade, Israel stuck to its policy of deniability aimed at preventing undue embarrassment to Assad that could have forced the Syrian leader to respond in ways that could have spiraled into war.

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Yadlin, the only person to have played a lead role in Israel’s destruction of two nuclear reactors ― first as a pilot in the 1981 attack in Iraq, and later as military intelligence chief during the 2007 operation ― recalled opposite concerns associated with both missions.



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Unread post08 Sep 2018, 12:56

Translation from http://www.iaf.org.il/4477-50435-he/IAF.aspx

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