Hezbollah’s most lethal and intimidating weapon so far has been the Katyusha rocket, which it has been firing into Israel ’s northern settlements since the 1980s. The Katyusha was first used against the German army in the Second World War by the Soviets. Katyusha is a nickname meaning “little Katy” in Russian.
Judging from the sheer number Hezbollah is able to fire at Israel, it has easy access to these weapons or has a very large and well dispersed stockpile, businessday.co.za reports.
The BM-14 Katyusha has a range of about 10km and can carry a payload of about 8kg, whereas the BM-21 has a range of up to 25km and can carry a payload of up to 18kg. According to security experts the rockets are easy to fire and are fairly easy to carry and store. Because the Katyusha has no guidance system it is not accurate. According to a report on the BBC News website, Katyushas have the greatest effect when launched in large numbers.
Hezbollah rockets killed 12 soldiers and at least three civilians in Israel yesterday, the deadliest day of the war for Israel , as Lebanon rejected a draft UN resolution to end the 26-day-old conflict.
Israeli bombardment of southern Lebanon killed at least 19 civilians and a Lebanese soldier.
In the Israeli village of Kfar Giladi, a rocket hit a group of Israeli reservists called up for the Lebanon offensive. Medics said 12 were killed and dozens wounded.
Soldiers near the scene held their heads and one wept as a military ambulance pulled away. Helicopters landed nearby to fly the badly wounded to hospitals further from the war front, Reuters reports.
Amid the growing bloodshed, Israel signaled its determination to seize the battlefield advantage while United Nations action is pending on a cease-fire proposal crafted by the United States and France.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice warned Sunday that the proposed U.N. resolution might not halt the fighting immediately, latimes.com says.
Prepared by Alexander Timoshik
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