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Israel Air Defense: Iron Dome, David’s Sling and Arrow… How much do you know the ‘Bhishma Pitamah’ of the Israeli Air Defense System?

Tel Aviv: Iron Dome. To say it is an air defense system. But the number of Israeli lives it saved alone is unimaginable. Whenever there is news of an attack on Israel from the Gaza Strip, the Iron Dome is definitely mentioned in it. Missiles fired from the Iron Dome battery like a rocket launcher often become a sensation on social media. A day earlier, Israel carried out a military operation in Palestine and killed a top commander of the terrorist organization Islamic Jihad. After which Palestinian terrorist organizations under the leadership of Hamas fired rockets at Israel. According to the Israeli military, 160 rockets have been fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip in less than 24 hours. Most of these were shot down in the air by the Iron Dome air defense system. The rest fell in such areas, from which there was no danger of damage to life and property. In such a situation, the Iron Dome once again proved that it was as effective in 2011 as it is in 2022.

Dr. Uzi Rubin is the Bhishma Pitamah of the Israeli Air Defense Industry
The Iron Dome and many other Israeli missile defense systems such as Arrow are deeply indebted to Dr. Uzi Rubin. Rubin served as the first head of Israel’s Ballistic Missile Defense Organization from 1991 to 1999. This was also the time when Israel modernized its air defenses as missile threats increased. Rubin was born in 1937. He is an Israeli defense engineer and analyst. Rubin is considered one of the distinguished analysts of missile systems in the Middle East. Uzi Rubin has been involved in Israel’s military research, development and engineering programs for nearly forty years. In recognition of his contribution to the defense sector, he was awarded the Israel Defense Prize in 1996. He also provides his services at the Jerusalem Institute for Strategy and Security. Seeing Rubin’s work, Israel has provided him VIP security.

Iraqi missile attack told Israel the importance of air defense
The first Iraq War broke out between 1990 and 1991. During this, Iraq fired 42 Scud missiles at Israel from January 17-23 February 1991. Some of them hit their target accurately, but this made clear the reality of a missile threat to Israel. This was the reason why Israel focused its full attention on modernizing the missile defense system. For this, the then Israeli government gave Dr. Uzi Rubin a full free hand to work by making him the head of the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization. At that time Israel had the American Patriot missile defense system, but it did not turn out to be as effective. Iraqi missiles on many bases in Israel blew the government’s sleep. This attack shook America too. After this attack, America also started working to make its Patriot system more effective.

Why Israel needed an air defense system
Israel is mostly threatened by Syria and Iran, as well as the terrorist organizations Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Both these terrorist organizations are active in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. On the other hand, Hezbollah has also become a big headache for Israel. This terrorist organization often carries out missile and drone attacks on Israel from Lebanon and Syria. In such a situation, the threat of an all-out attack on Israel remains. To counter these threats, Israel placed more emphasis on air defense systems.

Israel made this air defense system under Rubin’s leadership
Rubin led several projects developing missile defense systems in Israel. Because of this, Israel developed superpowerful long-range interceptor systems such as the Iron Dome, David’s Sling, Arrow, Arrow 2, Arrow 3 and now Arrow 4. Today these systems remain the foundation of Israel’s existence. If Israel’s Bass did not have such weapons, it would have to go through an existential crisis today. Rubin, who is currently 85 years old, is working as an advisor to Israel’s defense organizations. He is also active as an analyst at the Begin-Saadat Center for Strategic Studies. He also frequently writes and lectures extensively on regional and global threats.

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