Israel: Hezbollah Increased Rocket Range

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Israeli defense officials suspect the terrorist organization Hezbollah has new rockets that can hit anywhere in Israel.

The Iranian rockets have a range of 186 miles -- that means they can hit any of Israel's heavily populated centers, including Dimona, the site of Israel's nuclear reactor.

When Israel and Hezbollah fought a month-long war in 2006, Hezbollah fired nearly 4,000 rockets into Israel. The longest-range rockets fired, which Israel said were Iranian-made, hit some 45 miles inside Israel.

Although Israel's air force managed to take out most of the group's long-range rockets, the military failed throughout the war to halt the short-range rocket fire that paralyzed northern Israel and killed 40 Israeli civilians.

After the war, the U.N. dispatched a peacekeeping force to distance Hezbollah from the border and prevent the group from rearming. Since then, Hezbollah hasn't launched any rockets at Israel.

Two incidents of rocket fire were not claimed by the group and were likely the work of smaller militant factions.

But Israel says Hezbollah's Iranian and Syrian patrons have steadily provided the group with large amounts of rockets since then, many of them capable of hitting central Israel.

Hezbollah declined comment Thursday.

Source: The Associated Press

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