Iron Dome stopped 421 Hamas rockets

Dec. 28, 2012 at 1:55 PM
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TEL AVIV, Israel, Dec. 28 (UPI) -- The cost to operate Israel's Iron Dome rocket-intercepting system during Operation Pillar of Defense last month was about $27 million, an official said.

Israeli officials said the Iron Dome's five batteries had a kill rate of about 86 percent for the 421 rockets fired that would have hit populated areas, the Washington Post reported. Altogether there were more than 1,500 rockets fired at Israel.

The Israeli air force said Hamas had a less than 7 percent success rate at hitting populated areas, Ynetnews.com reported.

Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter said Thursday the cost of using the Iron Dome system was worth saving lives.

"Show me another [$27 million] investment that yielded such a return," he said.

"In the Second Lebanon War some 4,000 rockets were fired at Israel and about 1,000 hit populated areas. The Iron Dome system would have intercepted most of those rockets, and it would have cost us $50 [million]-$100 million," said the head of the Iron Dome project in the Defense Ministry.

"If we had to choose between the terror that claimed the lives of more than 1,000 Israelis over a period of only a few years and the 1,500 rockets (fired at Israel) during Pillar of Defense, which we can deal with, then dealing with the rockets is preferable," Dichter said.

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