Test of David’s Sling missile defense system deemed success


Israel successfully tested its newest missile defense system, called David's Sling.

The Israel Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency on Sunday announced that David's Sling, also known as Magic Wand, intercepted a mid-range missile during a test-firing of the system.

The system is being jointly developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems in Israel and the Raytheon Co. in the United States. It is designed to intercept missiles and rockets with a range of up to nearly 200 miles, especially rockets fired by Hezbollah from Lebanon, according to reports.

Iron Dome, which successfully intercepted between 80 percent and 90 percent of rockets fired from Gaza at Israel during the recent Operation Pillar of Defense, is designed to intercept short-range rockets.

David's Sling is scheduled for deployment in 2014.

House committee to propose Iron Dome boost


The House Armed Services Committee reportedly is proposing $680 million in additional funds for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.

A number of news outlets reported over the weekend that the Republican-majority Armed Services Committee plans to increase the funding in addition to the $205 million that was appropriated under President Obama’s 2013 defense budget.

Capitol Hill sources told JTA that a final figure has yet to be determined.

Two congressional leaders pushed for the increase in funding the Iron Dome system when they introduced legislation in March.

The Iron Dome Support Act was introduced by Howard Berman (D-Calif.), the ranking member of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, and the committee’s chairwoman, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.). The act currently has 66 co-sponsors.

A week following the introduction of the legislation, the Pentagon announced that it would “request an appropriate level of funding from Congress … based on Israeli requirements and production capacity.”

The Armed Services Committee will begin marking up the defense budget on Thursday.

IDF officials: Missile attack on Israel would produce less than 300 casualties


Israel Defense Forces officials told cabinet ministers on Monday that should Israel undergo a coordinated missile attack, there would be less than 300 Israeli casualties.

The number was mentioned by IDF officials during a discussion in Israel’s security-diplomatic cabinet, Channel 10 reported on Monday, and is far lower than the number mentioned previously by Defense Minister Ehud Barak, who reportedly said that a maximum of 500 Israelis would die in such an attack.

During the meeting, a senior official in the Israel Air Force told the cabinet ministers that in the event of a coordinated missile attack on Israel’s home front, missiles and rockets would be fired at Israel by the Syrian army, Hezbollah in Lebanon, terror organizations in Gaza, and most probably by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards as well.

Read more at Haaretz.com.