The Grad rocket threat against Israel has been a huge problem to the southern cities for years. They have landed in, on, and between buildings, as well as in empty areas. They’ve landed near schools, hospitals, and residences. So far, Israelis have been lucky: A Grad rocket has not landed on a building full of people and caused large numbers of death and injuries. But that is not for lack of trying.
Enter Iron Dome. It’s expensive—$25k per missile—but so far, it has worked perfectly to protect the residents of Ashdod and Ashkelon. Not a single Grad rocket harmed property or people in two Israeli cities this time around. The world is taking notice.
And so are Israel’s enemies. The rocket attacks grew in scope after Israel figured out how to stop most of the suicide bombings. Remember, in 2002, Palestinian terrorists were blowing themselves up sometimes as often as three times a day, on buses, in shopping centers, in hotel restaurants during Passover—the toll was horrific and the pace seemed unending. Israel responded with the security fence to make it harder to get into Israel, and stepped up developing intelligence on where the bombers were and where they were planning to strike. Israel perfected the art of assassinating high-ranking terrorists in their homes in Gaza, or driving from one place to another. Israeli drones patrol the sky now, looking for terrorist squads ready to launch rockets, but obviously, that isn’t enough. So Iron Dome was developed in Israel, by Israeli companies, with financial help from the U.S. The goal is to have all of Israel’s cities protected with an anti-missile shield.
Realistically, if Iran sets its proxy armies in Lebanon and Gaza free to fire hundreds or thousands of rockets per day at Israel, Iron Dome isn’t going to be able to keep up. Each battery costs $50 million. But for now, the Iranians and Hezbollah cannot be happy at all with the results of Israeli ingenuity.
If Israel comes up with a solution that thoroughly counters rocket attacks, the terrorists will have no recourse, and no power.
It is the second-most significant invention to affect the Middle East. The only thing greater will be the day that an Israeli scientist perfects an alternative fuel that knocks the bottom out of the crude oil market. (And may I live to see that day.)