In recent weeks, residents of the Upper Galilee region have witnessed trucks unload countless mounds of sand and watched artificial hills slowly rise, with a tank or armored personnel carrier parked atop each one.
“The hills are being built close to the cement barrier the IDF has been building in recent months along the border,” an area resident told Israel Hayom, referring to Israel’s border with Lebanon. “Judging from what I’ve seen, they are being built opposite Hezbollah watchtowers in a manner that allows [Israeli soldiers] to see past the cement wall, into Lebanon.”
“While they were building the [cement] barrier, I saw a tank overlooking the work, and now we see the same tank on the hill itself,” he said.
However, defense officials told Israel Hayom that there was no connection between the location of Hezbollah’s watchtowers and the location of the artificial hills where the tanks and APCs have been deployed.
According to one Israeli official, the purpose of the new positions is to give the IDF a field of vision beyond the cement barrier that has been built along the border in recent months.
The artificial sand hills are higher than the cement barrier, which is between and 6 to 8 meters (20 to 26 feet) tall.
The sand mounds are part of the army’s broader efforts to erect obstacles along the Lebanese border.
The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said: “The elevated hills were built for the tanks routinely deployed throughout the sector. The elevation was carried out to improve the tanks’ field of vision and the effectiveness next to the barrier.”