USA funds Israel's Iron Dome

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    Barak welcomes US decision to help fund Iron Dome

    By JPOST.COM STAFF , 04/15/2011 22:26

    Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Friday welcomed a decision by the US to approve a budget of $205 million to continue developing and equipping the Iron Dome rocket defense system. "This is a significant strengthening of Israel's defense capability against missiles," he said.

    US Congress approved in addition to continue funding Israeli projects such as "Arrow 2," "Arrow 3" and "Magic Wand."

    US President Barak Obama was expected to sign the approval of the United States annual budget in Congress later on Friday.

    In February, a second order of Iron Dome rocket defense systems was being held up due to delays in the passing of the United States annual budget in Congress.

    Sources in Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, developer of the Iron Dome, said they had been asked by the Defense Ministry to prepare a proposal for a number of new batteries to bolster the two delivered to the Israel Air Force last summer.

    The IAF was supposed to have declared the system operational in January, but postponed a final test of the system. Each Iron Dome is designed to defend against rockets at a range of 4-70 kilometers and can protect an area of approximately 150 square miles.

    A senior defense official said the procurement of additional batteries was being held up by delays in the passing of the 2011 federal budget in the US that is supposed to include a $205 million grant for Israel to use to buy the systems.

    Barak welcomes US decision to help fund Iron Dome
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    Israel’s military ordering more Iron Dome defense systems
    BY JTA staff report, Thu, Apr 14, 2011

    JERUSALEM – Israel’s military is ordering four more Iron Dome missile defense systems, which successfully deployed during recent rocket attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip.
    The Israel Defense Forces said April 11 that it would order the batteries from the Israel-based Rafael Advanced Defense Systems at a cost of up to $80 million each.
    The units reportedly will be delivered in a year-and-a-half and be ready for immediate use at that time.
    Funding for the new defense batteries, which intercepted all of the rockets in its coverage area in recent Gaza terrorist activity, is slated to come from an extra security aid allocation from the United States later this month.
    The military aid, $3 billion for 2011, plus an additional $205 million for Iron Dome, has been tied up for five months because of a budget impasse in Washington.
    President Obama is scheduled to sign the 2011 budget bill, which includes the aid to Israel, in mid-April.

    Israel’s military ordering more Iron Dome defense systems