Today (Monday), for the first time in history, the US Air Force inaugurated a permanent military base in Israel.
The new USA base will wave the American flag for the first time and house dozens of US soldiers permanently stationed there.
Brig. Gen. Tzvika Haimovitch, head of the IAF's Aerial Defense Command, announced the establishment of the installation on Monday evening.
According to Haimovitch, the new air base, along with other recent improvements to Israel's air defense program, "will improve our abilities significantly". The base is located within an existing Israeli military base in the Negev desert in southern Israel. Exact sizes aren't clear, but estimates are that several dozen United States soldiers will remain at the base.
Haimovitch would not comment on whether or not the Americans would take part in any combat operations; he stressed "it's much more significant than that".
"As we understand, it was on a reconnaissance mission along the border and the Golan Heights on behalf of Hezbollah", a military spokesman, Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricus, told reporters. He further noted that "The United States and Israel have long planned together, exercised together and trained together", adding that "with the opening of this site, these crucial interactions will happen every day". The radar is useful against medium- and long-range ballistic missile attacks. In addition, new systems will be deployed while older ones will be improved.
The Iron Dome is able to calculate when rockets will land in open areas, choosing not to intercept them, or towards civilian centers.
Before that, the U.S directly invested $205 million in Israel's Iron Dome in 2010.
Gen. Zvika Haimovich, commander of the Israeli Air Force's Aerial Defense Division, said in a statement.
Cutting the ribbon at the new American base.