Pre-War Jitters: Flock of Birds Triggers Israel’s Aerial Defense System


Times of Israel
Sept. 21, 2013

Planes scrambled to intercept what was initially believed to be an intrusion by enemy aircraft into Israel’s airspace / via Wikimedia Commons

Planes scrambled to intercept what was initially believed to be an intrusion by enemy aircraft into Israel’s airspace / via Wikimedia Commons

Residents of Tel Aviv and surrounding towns witnessed loud, low-flying maneuvers by Israel Air Force jets on Saturday morning when the planes scrambled to intercept what was initially believed to be an intrusion by enemy aircraft into Israel’s airspace.

The intruder, which turned out to be a flock of birds, was detected inside Israeli airspace shortly before 10 a.m. The surprise intrusion triggered alarms in Israel’s aerial detection systems, leading the Air Force to scramble fighters to intercept.

The slow-moving, weak radar signal given off by the birds led to concern among defense officials that the object might be a small unmanned drone.

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