As it conducts its mission to defend southern Israeli communities and vital strategic sites, the Israel Navy is also engaged in a quiet arms race with Israel’s adversaries in the Gaza Strip—namely, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

A senior IDF source told JNS about the ongoing activities of the Ashdod Naval Base, which is responsible for a substantial part of Israel’s coastal waters, stretching from central Israel to southern Gaza.

This area of jurisdiction, known as the Ashdod Arena, sees naval vessels securing Israel’s borders and keeping a watchful eyes on developing threats, explained the source. “We also guard our strategic assets, such as the [offshore] gas rigs and natural-gas production facilities—the whole complex coastal area.”

The ways in which the Israel Navy conducts its daily security missions is changing at a “dizzying pace,” stated the source, due to technological improvements in the IDF and advances made by the enemy.

“Each side is very dynamic,” said the source. “Hence, we always have to think a few steps ahead.”

On the Israeli side, the navy is developing new combat systems, while activating its force in quickly changing ways as part of its broad mission of finding answers to the range of threats. Read more at JNS