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Israel says Iran drone attack, missiles were foiled



Israel said it thwarted a broad aerial attack launched by Iran on Saturday night.

The volley of over 300 cruise missiles, ballistic missiles and drones launched toward Israel was a response to an attack on an Iranian diplomatic complex in Damascus, Syria, earlier this month.

This is the first time Iran has directly attacked Israel from Iranian territory, and the strikes set up a direct military confrontation between the two countries.

The Israeli and U.S. officials said dozens of drones and most missiles fired by Iran were shot down by Israeli, American and other allied forces before reaching Israeli territory.

 Air-raid sirens blared across Israel and explosions were heard over Jerusalem as Israel’s Iron Dome air-defense system kicked in.

A small number of missiles landed in Israel, causing light damage to a military base in Israel’s south, Israel said.

A former senior U.S. official said the attacks so far appear to be largely “performative,” although Israel said it expects further waves.

A hospital in southern Israel said it was treating 12 people after the attacks. A child was seriously injured by shrapnel from an intercept.

In a sign that Israel believes the brunt of the attack is over, the country’s command for the home front lifted sheltering orders before Israeli airspace reopened early Sunday.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said U.S. forces intercepted missiles and drones heading to Israel from Iran, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

President Biden condemned Iran’s attacks. The U.S. military in recent days had rapidly repositioned its resources in the region in anticipation of an Iranian attack. 

The president also spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

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