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The Arrow missile, seen here during its launch, successfully intercepted a ballistic missile that simulated Iran's most advanced possible future warhead. Israel says it's ready to shoot down nukes and traditional missiles from Iran and others.  (Source: AP)
"Bring it on," says Israel

While the 90s saw a time of relative peace, with the Iraq war and the escalate tensions with Iran, Israel is staying alert and preparing for any kind of assault.  The Israeli Air Force just wrapped up the 17th test of its new missile defense system and is confident that it can now shoot down any ballistic nuclear missiles that Iran or others could shoot at it.

The Palmahim Base launched an Arrow interceptor at a Blue Sparrow Missile, fired from an F-15 fighter jet.  The missile was designed to mimic an Iranian Shihab 3 missile, the kind of missile that Israel expects Iran to potentially use as a nuclear weapon delivery platform.  The Blue Sparrow has a split warhead and advanced radar-evading capabilities.  While the Shihab 3 ballistic missile currently lacks these capabilities, it is believed that Iran is working to develop them.  The test was jointly conducted by the IAF and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency.

An integral part of the new missile defense system is its new Green Pine radar system.  This highly accurate radar system was deployed to the Negev Desert in 2008.

Brig.-Gen. Daniel Milo, commander of the IAF's Air Defense Division said that the test's success, despite poor visibility, was a testament to the readiness of the country's missile defense program.  He states, "The Arrow technology is always improving, and we cannot forget that the enemy is also advancing with its capabilities."

It is unclear how well the system will work against Iran's latest missile, though -- the Sajjil.  The Sajjil is Iran's first solid fuel rocket.  Solid fuel allows the rocket to have a much greater accuracy than the previous liquid designs.  The missile has a range of 2,000 km.  Iran also has a stockpile of several BM25 intercontinental missiles which it purchased four or more years ago from North Korea.

The Arrow is also exceptionally effective against the Syrian Scud D, which is capable of delivering traditional and nontraditional payloads to anywhere in Israel.  Defense Minister Ehud Barak called the test "another achievement for Israel on its way to obtaining a multi-level missile defense system, starting with the Iron Dome to defend against short-range rockets, and to the Arrow."

The Israel missile defense system helps provide valuable test data to help the U.S. develop and improve its own missile shield.  The U.S., like Israel, claims its missile defense shield to be active and ready to destroy any nuclear threat.

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RE: Upcoming real estate investment opportunity
By omnicronx on 4/9/2009 10:31:36 AM , Rating: 3
Israel buys most of its weapons from the US, they are not merely given away. They have a huge budget for a country of their size, mainly from the millions upon millions of dollars in donations from Jews in the US and around the world. Not to mention even if other Middle eastern countries gain nuclear capabilities, they will still have a larger stockpile than all middle eastern countries combined for a long time. They also have a large amount of highly trained ground forces, as all citizens over the age of 18 must serve a minimum of 3 years for men, and 2 years for woman.

As the OP said, Israel is not a country to mess with, if backed into a corner, they could turn pretty much any middle eastern nation into a crater.

By lukasbradley on 4/9/2009 10:42:38 AM , Rating: 2
Drastically incorrect. The majority of US arms are received as grants. The loan component of the FMF was phased out years ago.

RE: Upcoming real estate investment opportunity
By omnicronx on 4/9/2009 1:02:32 PM , Rating: 5
Military Aid from the US only accounts for 20% of their annual military spending, they bought 6 billion dollars worth of arms from the US during the first five years of the Bush administration alone, not to mention the billions of dollars in contracts with US weapons manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin, Raytheon(they manufacture Tomahawk and sidewinder missiles) and Boeing.

Furthermore only 70% of the US aid is spent on US weaponry.
If you think the majority of their weaponry is paid for with US tax dollars, you would be wrong.

By lukasbradley on 4/9/2009 5:25:06 PM , Rating: 1
You are perverting statistics, and what I stated. Please explain the US$14.516B of grants and financing through the Foreign Military Financing program during the 2001-2005 years and how it relates to the US$6B in purchases.

If you have trouble in doing so, I can help you understand it.

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