Israel test-fired a missile from a military base on Wednesday, two days after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned of the "direct and heavy threat" posed by Iran's nuclear program.Missiles don't need in-flight refueling or permission to fly through other nation's airspace. And they don't place Israeli flight crews at risk.
The noon launch near Tel Aviv, which had not been announced in advance, coincided with a week-long surge of speculation in local media that Netanyahu was working to secure cabinet consensus for an attack on Israel's arch-foe.
Netanyahu's office declined comment on the reports, which were unsourced and unconfirmed, and which some commentators suggested might be disinformation designed to jolt war-wary foreign powers into stepping up sanctions against Tehran.
The Defense Ministry described the launch from Palmachim base as the test of the propulsion system of a missile on which it declined to elaborate.
"This is an impressive technological achievement and an important step in Israel's advances in the realms of missiles and space, which has been a long time in the planning," Defense Minister Ehud Barak said in a statement.
If the nuclear plant is a-rockin', Israel has come a'knockin'.
And here's another headline involving the Israeli military: