July 17 2014
Strong empirical evidence Israel shot down plane
Plane shootdown: approximately 14:15 UTC. Israeli assault on Gaza: 14:00 UTC. See a connection there? And when you consider the fact that it took time to confirm the downing, the two times actually match even more closely. Israel's assault on Gaza is viewed badly by the world community; what better way to bury it in the news than a plane shootdown, complete with the threat of a war with Russia?
And even if Russian forces did do this, it only takes a couple Jews among them to cause something like this. In my opinion, it is case closed regarding this, with the only question being: was this used as cover for disposal of Flight 370? Come on now, TWO MALAYSIA 777 AIRCRAFT IN 4 MONTHS? YEAH RIGHT. Any three-year-old would catch that B.S. if it involved airplane cookies instead.
UPDATE: Flightradar24.com now shows Flight MH17 taking off ON TIME (July 18). Yet when Flight 370 vanished, it took weeks to resume. So either Malaysia Airlines has multiple planes on this route, or they did not lose one. AND EVEN WITH THE NEW DEPARTURE TIME ESTIMATED, THE OLD DEPARTURE TIME FOR JULY 17 IS NOT LISTED AND THE FLIGHT STILL SHOWS AS CANCELED.
UPDATE: BUSTED: High-level tampering with this website over MH17 DOCUMENTED. If I log in to administer this website, and I click the front page link to Flightradar24, I get this version of events, yet if I am not logged in to administer this site and hit the page like a random user, Flightradar switches the page served to THIS PAGE. And they show a departure time of 10:31. Why then does this WIKIPEDIA report show the departure time as 10:14? THEY HAVE SCREWED UP AND DID NOT GET THE TIMES STRAIGHT IN THIS FALSE FLAG. PEOPLE, HOP ON THIS AND GET AS MANY CONFLICTING TIMES AS POSSIBLE DOCUMENTED.
CONFIRMED: Flightradar24.com is messing with results and screwed up a nonexistent departure time as proven by THE MSM. This inconsistency first noticed in a Wikipedia post is not a false edit or mistake.
Keep in mind it is the minutes that matter here, because time zones vary. 10:31 does not equal 6:15 no matter where you are on the globe, and for the record, this now confirms 3 different departure times: proof of a B.S. departure and re-enforcement of the possibility this really was the disposal of Flight 370.
Shootdown now confirmed and therefore top-posted
Gaza carnage has disappeared from the news over this shoot down: is this a secondary motive?
Judging from what is happening now, I am going to unofficially call it: Flight 370 has been disposed of, Russia will be blackballed, and ISRAEL DID IT ALL, because under the waves generated by this shootdown story, the ground invasion of Gaza has started and there is not a PEEP in the MSM about it. How convenient!
Heads up: Flightradar24.com, which is the defining site for flight history, says MH17 was canceled and never departed, with no departure time listed. Hmmm…. Good cover for Flight 370? Not enough substance to make a call on that one, but this is something to make note of at least. The site is down now, possibly overwhelmed? That is OK, I got a photograph of this.
And keep in mind that it is all in a blender now, with the necessary lies being told to bury this connection. Someone already has a Wiki up with the entire story including departure time, but no legitimate travel site site I came across in two hours of searching actually listed it.
Malaysia Airlines MH17 777 Flight 370 clone from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur shot down at border between Ukraine and Russia.
A Malaysian jet flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur was shot down by either Russia or Ukraine. The plane has now been declared shot down, and the media is doing its best to blame Russia. What a GREAT WAY to dispose of Flight 370 if Flightradar24.com is actually right about this!
And speaking about false flags, remember that Flight 370 clone in Tel Aviv? And do not forget about the 777 that was stopped by the Dutch from crashing the nuclear summit right after Flight 370 vanished, as this website predicted was likely to happen.
Missile system identified:
The jet was shot down by a Buk missile. The American press is being quick to blame Russia, but is failing to mention that Ukraine had a large supply of these. And that says a lot: it pretty much proves that 1. the Ukraine uprising had American/Israeli roots and that 2. the real goal is war with Russia – after all, if it was not, why struggle to blame them?
Video of smoke from crash:
Interesting tidbit: the plane's first flight was on July 17 1997 and was shot down on the anniversary of TWA Flight 800….
McCain [rabid Connecticut Zionist Joe "Joker" Lieberman's dummy]: "HELL TO PAY" if plane shot down
Sure a lot of debris from this Malaysia Airlines flight. Why so little for Flight 93 in Pennsylvania?
this photo, and I beg the question why. These types of photos in crashes never make it out, and I have now confirmed multiple news sources are posting these. WHY NOW? The media is quick to blame Russia for this, but I doubt it was Russia when this plane was shot down 50 miles inside of Ukraine. But then again, what about those three Israeli teens? This could be "useful"….
CONFIRMED BY MULTIPLE SUPPORTING TWEETS: Air traffic controller claims plane was being escorted by two Ukrainian fighter jets right before shootdown. That is worth adding to the mix.
When so much is "known" about what went on so soon after any event, a false flag is virtually guranteed. With Russia already being blamed in the MSM, I suggest people consider a different culprit. And what about that fighter jet escort? Identities can be spoofed, and two jets would be perfect for remote controlling Flight 370 to its death; they have to get rid of it anyway, why not like this?
Here is a quote, from a forum, that says it all:
"The debris is still smoking, and the liar MSM has ALL the answers already (including the type of missile "used")? How? Again: HOW? Fox News was there??
"The truly stupid dupe here is YOU swallowing the MSM bullshit – hook, line, and sinker. Obviously, you are utterly unable to THINK; you stick your stupid face on the TV screen and swallow all the garbage coming through, without an ounce of critical thinking."
I agree exactly. The reporting has all the hallmarks of 9/11 reporting, where the "target" was named and convicted on DAY ONE. THAT is the biggest indicator that this was indeed a false flag.
Additional info as it comes in (copy/paste links)
I found something else interesting about this. Flight 777 was being escorted by 2 Ukrainian fighter jets until just before the "disappearance". The air traffic control tower was then taken over by foreign personnel.
I watched CNN this morning and saw the story about the shootdown. They are already saying it was Russia who did it, without providing a single piece of proof, NOT EVEN A MOTIVATION or reason for them to shoot it down, and claiming they know it was Russia, long before they even knew where the damned plane wreckage was! They were also claiming they lost contact with it at the eastern border of Ukraine, yet somehow knew it went down in the eastern areas, yet somehow did not know where the plane was?
You want to know why the plane "lost contact"? Because an American AWACS system jammed its communications so there was no evidence when it was shot down by Ukraine to provide a pretext to go to war with Russia. This is exactly what happened – anything else is a lie!
My comment: Good info there. One question about those "Ukraine jets" which could have been spoofed in as cover for American jets: What about them as an escort for Flight 370? Would that not be ideal for remote control to its death?
MH17 all but completely proven to be Flight 370
Source: Dick Eastman
Israel's Iron Dome is Mass Murder and Theft and Mega-Chutzpah Deception
"We intercepted 87 percent of them with Iron Dome."
Israel says that almost 1,000 rockets have been fired into its territory from Palestine since the "Three Israeli Teenagers War" began on 8 July, and that 87 per cent of those missiles have been intercepted and destroyed by Iron Dome interception rockets that cost $95,000 each.
Congress was shown videos of missiles being self-destructed in mid-air, while being told they were seeing successful interceptions.
After Israel clashed with Hamas during November 2012, Israeli officials claimed the system intercepted up to 85 per cent of the rockets fired from Gaza, although that number has been called into question. Some analysts in Israel have pointed out that, as most rockets are invisible to the naked eye when in the sky, what is shown to the public could simply be footage of the Iron Dome missiles self-destructing in mid-air. sourceWhich means that Iron Dome may be both disinformation and a scam to elicit money from Congress and the U.K. Parliament.
The additional money for Iron Dome cleared one of its final hurdles Tuesday, when a key Senate appropriations subcommittee unanimously voted to double the Pentagon's $175 million request for fiscal year 2015. sourceTake the 1000 Grad rockets fired from Palestine at Israel and multiply that by 0.87: that gives the number of Iron Dome knockouts (870) by Israeli Tamir "Arrow II" interceptor missiles. The total cost of just those Tamir that hit targets – 870 multiplied by $95,000 – is $82,650,000. But how many Tamir were fired and did not hit targets? And what was the price tag on the other two Iron Dome systems, the interceptor batteries, the wall of radar installations around Israel, the communications, the manpower support? The U.S. has given Israel $720 million over the last three years, and just now the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee has voted to double Israel's request through the Pentagon, to $175,000,000.
Source: The Times of Israel
Iron Dome will keep on getting better, developer says
Missile defense system not only saves lives but also gives political leaders more time to make crucial decisions about war and peace, says Danny Gold
By Raphael Ahren July 14, 2014, 3:09 pm 52 comments
“The effectiveness of Iron Dome is very, very high,” said Brig.-Gen. (res.) Dr. Danny Gold, who helped develop the system. “I’m not surprised, because if you study the system, you foresee a very high rate of success. I’ve put the numbers very high, and it reached the goal and got even better. And I don’t see any physical barriers to getting even better.”
Iron Dome was already very accurate during the 2012 Operation Pillar of Defense, he said, “but the system is progressing all the time.”
Unlike other missile defense systems, which require a long time to adapt to new situations, Iron Dome can do so very rapidly, Gold told reporters during an English-language briefing organized by the Israel Project. “It’s not quite like an iPhone application, which can be changed in one minute, but the changes to the [Iron Dome] system can be made very fast, and then the system can progress very fast,” he said. “We tried to design a system that will cope with all bad things that can happen, and cope with uncertainty.”
Iron Dome has become a crucial factor in Operation Protective Edge, as it was able to shoot down dozens of rockets from Gaza that would have otherwise fallen on inhabited areas. On Sunday alone, Iron Dome downed 22 missiles out of more than 130 launched in Israel’s direction. Originally said to address short- to mid-range threats, described as between 4 and 70 kilometers, the system has since clearly expanded its range.
It was the Israel Air Force’s decision to shoot down a drone Hamas had sent to Israel Monday with Patriot missiles and not with Iron Dome, Gold said, although the system he helped create would have been perfectly capable of doing it. “Iron Dome has very huge capabilities that have not yet been demonstrated because there is no need,” he said.
“The system speaks for itself,” said Gold, a former head of research and development at Israel’s Defense Ministry and today the CEO of his own technology company. Almost everything the developers aimed for was achieved, he said, adding that Iron Dome not only saves lives but also prevents “billion of dollars in damages…. Israel is working, the economy is running,” he said. Furthermore, Iron Dome gives “additional maneuvering room for the political echelon,” as leaders aren’t pressured into action by rising casualties or panic in Israel’s civilian population. “We can prepare before we go to war,” he said.
Iron Dome project manager Daniel Gold (photo credit: Courtesy: President’s Conference)
Since the start of Operation Protective Edge, Israel has been attacked not only by nearly 1,000 rockets from Gaza but also by missiles from Syria and Lebanon. Gold is confident that Iron Dome is capable of dealing even with multiple simultaneous fronts. “Wherever you put the system, the area is protected. You can move it to Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv is protected. You can put it in Kiryat Shmona, Kiryat Shmona is protected. If you place it in Haifa, Haifa is protected – no matter who is shooting at you.”
Of course, he added, Israel needs “a very large inventory and also a few working production lines” to ensure that the system doesn’t run dry. “But I’m sure the Ministry of Defense is doing it and that there’s no bottleneck in this aspect.”
The system’s high rate of success does carry risks of the public becoming complacent about the threat of rocket attacks, Gold acknowledged. Civilians need to continue to meticulously seek shelter in protected areas whenever sirens sound, because despite Iron Dome’s very high success rate, “it’s not 100 percent,” he said. Additionally, dangerous debris from intercepted rockets could fall from the sky.
Israel’s political and military leadership, on the other hand, is unlikely to be swept away in a wave of unwarranted smugness, Gold suggested. They know that to keep Israelis safe [i.e. exploited by a Jewish-mafia-based protection racket], they need to combine deterrence and prevention of weapons from being smuggled to Hamas and Hezbollah with massive intelligence work, he said. “These are layers that support each other. I don’t think we’ll see a future in which people will sit at home and do nothing during an attack, and the Iron Dome will do everything.”
Finally, Gold rebutted critics who have claimed, in scientific journals and in the media, that Iron Dome fails to properly detonate shrapnel-packed explosive heads and thus cannot be relied on to keep civilians safe. “They have no connection to Iron Dome and its technology,” he said of Iron Dome’s critics. “They have no connection even to reality, because the reality is that Iron Dome is taking almost everything down.”
Source: The Jerusalem Post
Is the Iron Dome effective?
By UZI RUBIN 04/04/2013 21:45
The claim that Israel has not provided the US with accurate data on the Iron Dome’s performance is ridiculous.
Iron Dome displayed at Ben Gurion airport for Obama's visit. Photo: Alon Basson/Defense Ministry
Dr. Theodore Postol, a professor at MIT, claimed in his Haaretz article on March 31 that contrary to the Defense Ministry claim that the Iron Dome has succeeded in intercepting more than 80 percent of rockets launched into Israeli population centers during November’s Pillar of Defense operation, the actual proportion never exceeded 10 percent.
Postol based his claim on video clips of the launches that were shown in the media and on the Internet, as well as on the number of property damage claims submitted to the Treasury’s Compensation Fund.
He accuses the IDF of concealing the facts by not revealing the location of rockets that fell on Israeli soil that were not intercepted by the Iron Dome, arguing that disclosure of these locations would not pose a security risk. Finally, Postol goes a step further and accuses the government of providing Israeli and US citizens with false information.
This could not be farther from the truth. Postol’s “analysis” of these public video clips and his underestimation of the Iron Dome’s effectiveness are meaningless and his conclusions are completely baseless.
In those clips, only the Iron Dome’s trail of smoke can be seen. The Grad rocket that it is about to intercept, however, cannot be seen.
To assess whether the Iron Dome’s missile successfully hit the Grad rocket, the trajectories of both must be observed, which is possible only through a full sky image obtained from sophisticated security sensors in which both projectiles can be observed simultaneously. This information is never released to the public since it would reveal the IDF’s discovery and tracking capabilities.
In short, the Israel Air Force, the Defense Ministry and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems have studied each and every interception completely, and the results are conclusive: The Iron Dome’s success rate is as published.
Postol’s claim that disclosure of the locations in which Grad missiles escaped Iron Dome interception and hit Israeli soil would not help the enemy improve its accuracy indicates more than anything else his lack of understanding of missile warfare. A barrage of Grad rockets that is aimed at a specific point is liable to strike anywhere up to a kilometer from that point. Although the enemy cannot control where the rocket lands, it has full control over which point it aims the cluster of rockets at and can change it by tilting, raising or lowering the multiple rocket launcher.
Our enemies in Gaza and Lebanon try to pick points that fall right in the center of Israeli cities so that all the cluster rockets fall within the most densely populated areas and cause the maximum number of casualties and damage, but often they are not successful.
Errors made by the enemy in choosing a center point can result in most or even all of the rockets missing population centers and failing to inflict significant damage. Publicizing the exact location of these hits would help the enemy improve its aim and thereby raise the number of casualties and amount of damage. Publicizing this information would endanger the lives and property of Israeli citizens.
Postol argues that Hamas already knows where the points of impacts are, from “people who could visit these places within the range” (i.e. spies). I suggest that he try to find the locations that were hit – then he would realize how hard it is.
In any event, even if that were the case, why should Israel help Hamas by giving it this information on a silver platter just to satisfy a distinguished professor living in peaceful Massachusetts, far from the Gaza rockets? Postol also claims that the high number of property damage claims following Pillar of Defense proves that the Iron Dome’s success rate must be lower than that reported, since in his opinion it is unlikely that such a small number of hits would cause such a large number of claims. It turns out that he did not bother to compare this number with data from previous attacks, and therefore could not know how many claims are reasonable.
In the Second Lebanon War in 2006, for example, 4,000 rockets were launched into unprotected areas in northern Israel, a quarter of which hit in populated areas. More than 30,000 property damage claims were subsequently submitted.
In Pillar of Defense, 1,500 similar types of rockets were fired into Israel, a third of which hit or would have hit populated areas. A simple calculation shows that if the Iron Dome system were not in place, the number of property claims would have reached 14,400. In actuality, only 3,165 claims for submitted, one-fifth of the number that would be expected if the Iron Dome were not operational – further evidence that the system has a high interception rate. Just as Balaam in the Book of Numbers tries to curse the Israelites but only blessings come out of his mouth, so too is Postol trying to curse us, but ends up blessing us.
His claim that Israel has not provided the US with accurate data on the Iron Dome’s performance is ridiculous. Anyone who has had any contact with the US government knows that it would never agree to allocate such a large amount of funding to manufacture Iron Dome systems without carefully checking their performance.
And the US has a state comptroller, too.
Finally, Postol’s accusation that Israel has been lying to its citizens and to its greatest ally – the US – does not even merit a response. To the distinguished professor I say: Those who unjustifiably reject others because of a particular defect, usually suffer from this defect themselves.
The author served as the first director of the Israel Missile Defense Organization in the Defense Ministry.
Translated by Hannah Hochner.
Source: The Week UK
Iron Dome: how Israel's missile defense system works
LAST UPDATED AT 09:48 ON Wed 16 Jul 2014
During the latest round of Middle Eastern violence, Israel has been protected from rockets fired from Gaza by its Iron Dome defence system. The mobile missile defense system has been hailed as a "game-changer" which saves lives rather than taking those of enemies, and "an extraordinary homemade rocket swatter".
Iron Dome could also open up a lucrative export market for the Israeli economy – yet some have questioned its effectiveness.
What is it?
Iron Dome is an air defense system used by Israel to intercept and destroy short-range rockets, artillery shells and mortars fired from distances of up to 45 miles, to protect civilian areas in the path of such projectiles.
How does it work?
It is a three-piece system of interceptor batteries that shoot rockets out of the sky. A radar tracks the rocket as it is fired across the border into Israel, and then advanced software predicts the rocket's trajectory. The information it provides is used to guide Tamir interceptor missiles, which are fired from the ground to blow the rocket into harmless pieces in the sky.
How long has Israel been using it?
Iron Dome, built by the Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, was first used in March 2011 and made its first successful intervention the following month, when it intercepted a Grad rocket fired from Gaza. Jerusalem decided to build the system after a war with Lebanon's Hezbollah in 2006, when 4,000 rockets rained down on northern Israel, killing 44.
How much does it cost to run?
Each interception rocket costs around $95,000. Due to the cost, Israel usually uses it only against rockets destined for residential areas, rather than those headed for open ground. The cost of rebuilding infrastructure damaged by rockets can often exceed that of using the Iron Dome. The US has part-funded the system, pledging $429m towards the program me.
How effective is it?
After Israel clashed with Hamas during November 2012, Israeli officials claimed the system intercepted up to 85 per cent of the rockets fired from Gaza, although that number has been called into question. Some analysts in Israel have pointed out that as most rockets are invisible to the naked eye when in the sky, what is shown to the public could simply be footage of the Iron Dome missiles self-destructing in mid-air.
Bur other analysts state there is "no doubt" that the system works. And Time magazine’s defense expert Mark Thompson says the "lack of Israeli casualties suggests Iron Dome is the most effective, most tested missile shield the world has ever seen."
How many rockets has it stopped this time around?
Israel says that almost 1,000 rockets have been fired into its territory by Palestinian militants since hostilities began on 8 July, and that 87 per cent of them have been intercepted and destroyed by Iron Dome.
Are there any drawbacks to Iron Dome?
Apart from the risk of injury from falling shrapnel, some have suggested that the shield creates political risks by giving Israeli politicians a sense of invulnerability, allowing them to pursue a policy of "conflict management" rather than looking for lasting peace. "Iron Dome has altered the calculus of Israel’s political echelons in ways they have yet to understand," a former senior Israeli official tells The Economist. "It allows Israel to resist internal public and military pressure for a quick end to the conflict, and keep bombing Gaza."
Could it be used in other countries?
Rafael has collaborated with American firm Raytheon to develop a related defense system known as "David's Sling", which is intended to stop rockets and other projectiles with ranges between 45 and 200 miles.
An Iranian general sees Iron Dome differently:
Fri Apr 4, 2014 9:28AM GMT
Iron Dome ‘disgraced’ Israeli regime
This file photo shows an interceptor projectile fired from the Israeli Iron Dome missile system.
A senior Iranian military figure has scoffed at the Israeli regime’s claims about its Iron Dome missile system, saying that Israelis see no safe place for themselves in the occupied Palestinian lands.
“Defense systems and defense missile systems should demonstrate their effectiveness in practice. Zionists have preliminary tests of their defense systems; but, it is the real encounters that prove the efficacy of a defense or missile system,” Brigadier General Yadollah Javani, who is a senior military adviser to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei in the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), said on Thursday.
He further noted that the Iron Dome, which the Tel Aviv regime had long been boasting about and had placed high on its military doctrine, collapsed during the eight-day Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip in November 2012 and totally disgraced Israel with respect to its defense capabilities.
“Prior to the 8-Day War, the Zionists in fact counted heavily on the Iron Dome and thought that the land in their control, which is an occupied land, has high security and immunity and no weapon could pass through the defense system and the Iron Dome would ensure the safety of the Zionists like a big shield,” Javani said.
Nevertheless, “a major incident took place during the course of the 8-Day War, which was that the Palestinians discredited this defense system of the Zionist regime (Israel) and dispelled all the propaganda that the Zionists had waged with respect to the defense system,” he added.
Israeli media reported that during the 8-day onslaught against the Gaza Strip, less than a third of the projectiles fired by Palestinian fighters, nearly 310, were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile system.
On April 1, reports said Israel’s Iron Dome had intercepted two Grad rockets fired at the Red Sea resort city of Eilat in southern Negev.
However, the army later admitted that the attacks were really a false alarm caused by an error at the Iron Dome site near the city.
The Israeli army initially presumed that a rocket attack had occurred in the area.
Next U.S. Congress will be receiving bills for deploying "Iron Beam" laser defense against mortar fire – "designed for threats too small to be dealt with by existing systems":
Source: The Jerusalem Post
Israeli Iron Beam laser air defense system 'brings down mortars like flies' creator says
By YAAKOV LAPPIN 04/02/2014 16:16
Innovation of Rafael Advanced Defense Systems company is designed for threats too small to be dealt with by existing systems.
US laser weapon technology Photo: US Navy Illustration
Vice Admiral (Ret.) Yedidia Yaari, former chief of the Israel Navy, said the Iron Beam system will be "very effective" once it becomes operational.
Israel Defense cited Yaari as saying that that Iron Beam successfully passed a feasibility test, and is currently in development stages.
Iron Beam fires lasers at mortar shells, and has proven a high rate of accuracy, Yaari said, describing the system as "highly impressive." It was first unveiled formally by state-owned Rafael during the Singapore Air Show last month.
The system is designed to deal with threats that fly on too small a trajectory to be engaged efficiently by Iron Dome anti-rocket batteries.
Iron Dome is complemented by Arrow II, an Israeli interceptor designed to shoot down ballistic missiles at atmospheric heights. Israel plans to integrate them with the more powerful rocket interceptors Arrow III – which will intercept ballistic missiles in space – and David's Sling – designed for large rockets and cruise missiles – both of which are still under development.
The United States has extensively underwritten the projects, seeing them as a means of reassuring its Middle East ally as instability rocks the region.
An industry official, who asked not to be named, told Reuters in January that Iron Beam would form the "fifth layer" of integrated missile defense.
Reuters contributed to this report
Source: Foreign Policy
Israel's Iron Dome Gets New Funding as Gaza Fight Intensifies
BY Kate Brannen
JULY 15, 2014 - 07:57 PM
This story has been corrected.
Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile system has kept the country safe from the hundreds of Hamas rockets flying toward its major cities from the Gaza Strip. With fighting intensifying, Congress seems poised to give Israel and one of the United States' largest defense contractors a jolt of good news: $175 million in new American aid that will help fund an expansion of the program.
The additional money for Iron Dome cleared one of its final hurdles Tuesday, when a key Senate appropriations subcommittee unanimously voted to double the Pentagon's $175 million request for fiscal year 2015. The full committee will consider the defense appropriations bill on Thursday. Meanwhile, three other panels have already signed off on the funding expansion, making it all but certain the additional money will be provided. Iron Dome has received $720 million in American funding since 2011, when the United States became directly involved in the program.
Iron Dome, which is built by the Israeli defense company Rafael, has kept Israeli casualties so low that it's credited with bolstering the public's support for a longer bombing campaign rather than an immediate ground invasion into Gaza. If Hamas rockets had managed to strike major Israeli population centers, the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would have had little choice but to send troops into Gaza on a high-risk mission to find and destroy the militant group's rocket launchers.
Instead, Israel is reporting that Iron Dome has had a 90 percent success rate, though it has only been used against 27 percent of the Hamas rockets. Because of the high cost of each interceptor – which the Washington Post pegs at roughly $20,000 a piece – Israel only uses the system when its radars indicate that a rocket seems likely to hit a populated area. The Hamas rockets are thought to cost less than $800 each.
With the conflict intensifying, a Hamas mortar shell fired from Gaza Tuesday caused the first Israeli death since the eight-day military confrontation began.* Israeli airstrikes on targets in Gaza, by contrast, have killed close to 200 Palestinians.
While some missile defense experts say the success of Iron Dome has been overhyped, the system is frequently celebrated in both Israel and the United States for saving civilian lives. At a Pentagon press briefing in 2012, then-Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak presented then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta with a mini-Iron Dome model. Panetta responded by giving Barak a photograph of the two of them visiting an Iron Dome site in Israel.
On Capitol Hill, meanwhile, lawmakers from both parties have long been eager to show their support for the program, which they see as a cost-effective way of developing state-of-the-art technologies that the Pentagon can use to improve its own missile defense capabilities. With U.S. contributions to the Iron Dome program set to reach nearly $1 billion, however, lawmakers have also made clear that they want more Iron Dome production work to move to the United States to create jobs for Americans and generate new revenues for American firms.
Defense giant Raytheon stands to be the biggest beneficiary, with the Massachusetts-based company signing on as a subcontractor with Rafael.
In March, the United States and Israel signed an Iron Dome agreement that hammered out many of the key details surrounding the new Rafael-Raytheon partnership.
The deal paved the way for 30 percent of Iron Dome production to take place in the United States in 2014 and 55 percent in 2015. Before the March 5 agreement, only 3 percent of U.S. funding on Iron Dome was spent on components bought in the United States, according to a report the Pentagon provided to Congress in April.
Still, some questions remain, particularly about how much starting Iron Dome production in the United States will add to the costs or delay the delivery schedule.
The Pentagon addressed some of those concerns in April, when it sent a report to Congress asserting that Raytheon and Rafael have worked together "to ensure that Raytheon's costs did not exceed Rafael's costs by more than five percent on any particular component." Anything that exceeds this threshold will continue to be bought from Rafael at a lower cost, the report said.
For 2015, the Pentagon requested $175 million for Iron Dome, but the Israeli government went to Capitol Hill this spring and asked Congress to double that amount.
"The reason for this is the impact of the cost of the transfer of production to the U.S., which was not part of the original proposed budget," an Israeli Embassy official told Foreign Policy Monday.
According to a person familiar with the matter, Israel's request came as a bit of a surprise since it came after the March agreement and was done without giving the U.S. Missile Defense Agency a heads up.
Israel's argument that more money was needed due to coproduction costs was met with some skepticism because there is little hard data available yet about how U.S. production may increase costs, the official said.
In their versions of the 2015 defense spending bill, the House Appropriations Committee, the House Armed Services Committee, and the Senate Armed Services Committee have all indicated they'll provide Iron Dome the extra $175 million, but in the reports that accompany the committees' legislation are a long list of questions for the Israelis about how they plan to spend the money.
The House committees have said the money can't be spent until Israel provides the Missile Defense Agency with the information and its director signs off on it. A congressional source said Israel should be able to provide the requested information without a problem.
On Tuesday, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense – the last committee to weigh in – also agreed to double next year's $175 million request, essentially guaranteeing the funding boost.
Correction, July 16, 2014: The first Israeli fatality since its current conflict with Hamas began just over a week ago came from a mortar shell. An earlier version of this article incorrectly said it came from a rocket attack.