Israel, US Achieve ‘Major Milestone’ in Long-Range Missile Defense System Test

Israel and the US working together on missile defense. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Israel’s longest-range missile defense system underwent a successful interceptor test flight by Israel and the United States on Monday, and the sides were clearly excited over the results. “The success of this test is a major milestone in the operational capabilities of the State of Israel and its ability to defense itself against current and future threats in the region,” Israel’s Ministry of Defense said in a press release.

The test was carried out in the middle of the night in central Israel and involved launching a missile interceptor from the system, known as the Arrow-3. That system, the longest-range version of the Arrow—or Hetz in Hebrew—is part of a multilayered missile defense system in Israel that includes the Iron Dome, the David’s Sling and the Arrow-2 systems. The Arrow-3 interceptors were delivered for operational use to Israel last year.

The test of the Arrow-3—which the press release said is “designed to defend against ballistic missile threats outside the atmosphere”—was jointly carried out by the Israel Missile Defense Organization and the US Missile Defense Agency.

The Arrow-3 is not just a joint project between militaries for Israel and the US, but for their industries as well. Israeli company Elbit and American company Boeing were among the various entities involved in building the advanced missile defense system.

Israel faces numerous missile threats from a variety of enemies, including Iran—which has made efforts to develop missiles capable of exiting earth’s atmosphere and is feared to be pursuing the extremely long-range intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).

In the face of Iran and other threats, the United States has long partnered Israel’s missile defense an important priority.

(By Joshua Spurlock,, February 19, 2018)

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