With an eye on threats stemming from Iran and its terror proxies such as Hezbollah, Israel deployed the latest phase of its anti-ballistic missile defense system.
Israel’s Arrow 3 anti-ballistic defense system became active on Wednesday with the transfer of the operational interceptors to Israel’s Air Force (IAF), the Defense Ministry announced.
In a formal ceremony, the Israel Missile Defense Organization (IMDO), a division of the Ministry of Defense, transferred the interceptors to the IAF’s Aerial Defense Array.
The Arrow-3 development program, one of the joint programs between Israel and the US, was co-managed by the US Missile Defense Agency and IMDO.
“The US contribution to the program is a key reason Israel has achieved this remarkable accomplishment,” the MoD stated.
Israel’s defensive capabilities against ballistic missile threats entered a new era with the Arrow Weapon System 3 (AWS) becoming operational. Before this stage, the AWS consisted of Arrow-2 interceptors, and has now added the Arrow-3 operational interceptor.
The Arrow-3 interceptor is a world-class missile that, together with the Arrow-2, adds another tier and expands the defense shell provided to the State of Israel. The Arrow-3 interceptor capabilities enable longer range, higher altitude exo-atmospheric and more precise ballistic missile engagements.
“The combined interception capabilities of the Arrow-2 and Arrow-3 will significantly reduce the possibilities of ballistic missiles impacting the State of Israel,” the MoD stated.
During the integration process of the new interceptor, the weapons system components were fully upgraded. “These substantial improvements are the results of the finest minds in the defense industry, who diligently worked day and night to achieve this milestone,” the MoD said.
“As the threats continue to grow and new emerging threats surface, IMOD, IMDO and the US are dedicated to the continued development and enhancement of the Israeli Ballistic Missile Defense elements and systems to provide the appropriate defense solutions. Undeniably, the Arrow Weapon System’s unique and expanding capabilities place Israel among the most advanced countries in the World in the ability to defense against ballistic missile threats,” the MoD concluded.
The Arrow 2 and Arrow 3 join Israel’s broad defensive systems, which include the highly successful Iron Dome system and David’s Sling, designed to contend with mid-range missiles. They provide an almost hermetic defense against a wide array of ballistic projectile, with its eye on the Iranian ballistic threat and those posed by the Hezbollah terror organization out of Lebanon and Hamas out of Gaza.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News