Israel is set to launch a critical test of the David's Sling's Stunner interceptor missile in the coming days, the Boston Globe reported Saturday.
The David’s Sling is a missile defense system currently under development by Rafael in Israel and Raytheon in the US. The system would defend against Iranian missiles such as the M600, the Zelzal, Fajr and Fateh 110 deployed heavily in Hezbollah hands in Lebanon as well as other missiles with a range between 70 and 300 kilometers. It is slated to become operational in 2014.
The missile threat to Israel varies, but the IDF estimates there are about 200,000 rockets and missiles pointed in its direction from Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas.
Israel is currently concerned with the possibility of an attack from Syria. One scenario under consideration is that President Bashar Assad will try to divert attention away from his brutal onslaught against the Syrian people by sparking a confrontation with Israel. In such an event, the possibility that Scud missiles will be fired is not considered impossible.
David’s Sling uses the Stunner interceptor, fitted into a launcher that can hold 16 missiles. It works together with an advanced phased-array radar made by Israel Aerospace Industries. The system can also be formatted to defend Israel's skies against enemy aircraft.
David's Sling will operate within Israel's multi-tiered missile defense system, protecting the country from medium-range threats. The Iron Dome system aims to intercept short-range missiles and rockets, while the country's Arrow and eventually Arrow 3 seek to intercept long-range missiles and ICBMs.
Yaakov Katz contributed to this report
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