The Iron Dome

The constant threats of rocket attacks, mortar strikes and artillery bombardment on Israel have been most prominent to the residents there since their beginnings in the 1990’s. These attacks undertaken then by the Islamic extremists from the Hezbollah terrorist group based in neighboring Lebanon. The number of casualties inflicted motivated the Israeli government to develop counter-measures by buying US made defense systems (that were quite ineffective for this particular job), and development of their own. The solution: the Iron Dome anti-rocket Interceptor System. The Iron Dome replaced the older US rockets in 2011, when it was first deployed near Beersheba. It is a completely unique device, the only one of its kind in the world. Since then, the system has saved countless lives. As recent as yesterday the Iron Dome intercepted and foiled a rocket attack launched from the Hamas terrorists on the Gaza Strip. This year, 4,800 rockets have been fired, 90% have been intercepted. These attacks are targeting noncombatants with many points they are landing appear to be residential areas and there are only 10 Iron Dome launch pads. The picture above depicts the Iron Dome in action, at left, while the right side shows the rockets they’re about to intercept before the can reach their civilian targets. The interception system has a protective range of up to 43 miles.

However, there is debate in many countries on whether or not to continue funding to this life saving device, including the US. Israel’s allies correctly assert that its vital to not only their homeland security, as it is a solely defensive device, but also to Israel’s survival and to peace in the Middle East. The officials at the Pentagon oppose defunding the program. Though contrarily wise, opponents of the bill recently met at the UN’s Durban IV Conference’s 20th Anniversary to discuss the funding. Democratic members of the USHOR are moving to pull funding from Israel to fund their public health and services bills while Republicans blast the move as ”an anti-semetic, betrayal of our greatest ally in the Middle East”. Though it was designed as well as created in Israel jointly by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries, the continued creation of the Iron Dome relies on foreign funding, especially from the United States. In any event, many lives will be lost if the funding is dropped, as Israel will be unable to keep the Iron Domes operational and the technology sharing of the design will cease.

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