The Israeli military and intelligence have been working closely with India for many years -- mostly in secret of course, but with occassional public visibility and exposure. Now the Israelis see a historic possibility emerging: New regimes can be brought about in Baghdad and Tehran, Pakistan can be essentially castrated and de-nuclearized, and while the 'new world order' is being created the Palestinians can be more totally subjugated with the possibility the refugee camps can be destroyed, many Palestinians expelled, and possibly a Palestinian State helped to emerge to replace the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
Israel may let India use its new high resolution spy satellite
Monday, June 3, 2002
TEL AVIV — Israeli Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer told the cabinet Sunday that the new Ofeq-5 spy satellite has transmitted its first images of the Middle East with a high resolution of less than a meter. Officials said the government may offer satellite services to India.
Israeli officials said the images were relayed from the low-orbit satellite to a ground station in Israel over the weekend. The officials said the images were the first sent by the satellite since its launch on Tuesday.
The quality of the photographs were termed as excellent. Officials said the Defense Ministry is considering offering satellite services to such allies as India and Turkey, Middle East Newsline reported.
Ben-Eliezer and a senior space official briefed the Cabinet on last week's Ofeq-5 launch. Ben-Eliezer said the satellite is among the most advanced in the world.
Ofeq-5 is undergoing a series of tests to determine the success of the launch and its operations. Officials said the tests would last several weeks and will be conducted by the state-owned Israel Aircraft Industries.
The satellite was placed into low-orbit by the Shavit-class solid-fuel, three-stage booster. Manufactured by IAI's MLM Division, the Ofeq-5 completes an orbit of the earth every 90 minutes at an angle of inclination 143 degrees. Officials said a limitation of the satellite is that it can return to photograph the same target every two to three days, thus preventing constant surveillance.
The satellite's weight is about 300 kilograms with a height of 2.3 meters and 1.2 meter diameter. The weight of the Ofeq-5 is about one-third more than Ofeq-3.
The Ofeq-5 contains a telescopic camera produced by El-Op Electro-Optic Industries, a subsidiary of Elbit Systems. The system — which acquires images underneath and lateral to the satellite and in swaths ahead of its trajectory -- is bigger than that installed on the Ofeq-3 and can produce high-resolution images of 0.8 meters. The Ofeq-5 has a shelf life of four years, IAI said. In January 1998, Israel failed in its attempt to successfully launch Ofeq-4, which fell to earth minutes after launch. The Defense Ministry then decided to build a satellite with advanced technology.
Since December 2000 Israel's space-imaging needs have been met by Eros-A. Eros-A, with a resolution of about 1.8 meters, is said to be virtually identical to the Ofeq-3 and serves both civilian and military clients. Ofeq-3 was said to have terminated operations at the end of 2000 and burned up in the atmosphere.
Officials said the combination of the Ofeq-5 and Eros-A satellites give Israel virtually round-the-clock coverage of the Middle East. ImageSat International, 30 percent of which is owned by IAI, plans to launch Eros-B in 2004.
The Jane's Information Group reports that the 1998 launch was that of the first Eros satellite. The London-based group said Israel concealed this and referred to the launch as that of Ofeq-4.
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