UPDATED: “Downed Plane” An Apparent Hezbullah Missile
The Israel Defense Forces on Monday said it believed Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon attempted to fire an Iranian-made missile with a range of 200 km at Israel which malfunctioned and fell onto Lebanese territory.
The falling missile, described as a Zilzal, was the likely source of Lebanese reports that an Israel Defense Forces aircraft had been hit and brought down over Lebanon.
The IDF denied that one of its aircraft had been downed over Lebanon, despite Lebanese media reports. “There was no such thing,” a military source said.
The IDF initially said the object seen being shot down on Hezbollah’s Al Manar television station was a failed attempt to launch one of the Katyusha rockets that have battered Israel over the past six days.
Jerusalem Post: IDF destroys long-range missile in Lebanon
The IDF rejected a Lebanese report that an IAF fighter jet had been shot down, and said that the army had destroyed an Iranian-made long-range Zelzal missile, which fired into the air and fell back down.
The Zelzal missile is believed to have a range of over 200 kilometers and could, officials said, reach Tel Aviv.
The officials said Israeli aircraft targeted a truck carrying the weapons before they could be launched. The force of the blast sent at least one missile flying into the air, but it fell nearby. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity under military regulations.
The Hizbullah-backed Al Manar television had claimed earlier that an IAF jet had crashed in eastern Lebanon and that an explosion was seen in the sky above…