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Thursday, November 16, 2023
Alert: USA Funding Trumps Defense Priorities? Iron Dome to be delayed by promises of $1.2 billion funding?

Alert: USA Funding Trumps Defense Priorities? Iron Dome to be delayed by
promises of $1.2 billion funding?
Dr. Aaron Lerner 16 November 2023

When Rafael successfully demonstrated a fully operational model of the Iron
Beam months ago, it was hoped that serial production was imminent,
potentially deploying enough units to significantly impact the security of
the Jewish State.

The IAF has a plan to destroy Hezbollah's medium and long-range rockets and
missiles, but without Iron Beam there wasn't a solution for Hezbollah's
hundred thousand short range rockets other than a massive ground operation
to remove Hezbollah's presence up to the Litani River. Deploying Iron Beams
to cover the northern border in sufficient numbers would go a long way
towards addressing that "hole".

I fear that the promise of $1.2 billion in American funding will not only
cause delays in the program as we await the funds rather than using our own
(a situation we've seen in the past with equally critical programs), but it
could also lead to significant delays due to American involvement and its
distinct project management approach.

And that's all before the possibilities that we end up facing restrictions
on the use of the system.

Please don't get me wrong. I value America's support. But we cannot be
blind to the frightening prospects that in the not-so-distant future, those
young staffers in many government institutions who oppose us might take the

Below is IMRA material discussing this issue back in 2022:

Senior person in the Israeli military industries slams involving USA in
Israeli Laser Program Senior person in the Israeli military industries slams
involving USA in Israeli Laser Program
Saturday, June 18, 2022

In response to the IMRA commentary below, a senior person in the Israeli
military industries adds:

Analyzing many comparable systems, one can safely state that it takes
one-tenth of the cost and one-third of the time for the Israeli Defense
Industry to develop a similar, if not better, performing system. This was
the case with the Israeli "PHALCON" early warning aircraft compared with the
US E-2C or the US PATRIOT to Israeli IRON DOME.

I have perfect respect for the American Defense Industries, for their strict
methodology and risk awareness which fit the needs of the American Defense
Establishment. But we had to learn how to cut corners and accept a higher
degree of risk without sacrificing performance.

The US has its Laser development programs. Lockheed-Martin claims to have
already the capabilities Israel is trying to achieve. They are a proud
company that will undoubtedly keep the IP (intellectual property) in their
hands, even if convinced to cooperate with Israel.

Israel must keep its freedom to recover the investment in developing the
Laser systems through export, precisely as it was able to amply recover the
development of the Multi-Mission RADAR for the IRON DOME.

Involving the USA will prolong the development, it won't save money, and
will restrict Israel from competing with American companies in the world
Weekly Commentary: Terrible Mistake To Involve USA in Israeli Laser Program
Dr. Aaron Lerner 16 June, 2022

There's talk that Israel will be discussing the possibility of American
funding as well as coproduction for its revolutionary laser system which
promises to be a game changer on many front as Israel implements its
exclusive knowledge in a suite of applications ranging from ground based
systems protecting Israeli communities to mobile and airborne platforms
which can engage in a broad array of defensive and offensive operations.

Any American involvement in the project would be a mistake.

American funding will inevitably delay the project: American funding, by its
very nature, is a long process. This wouldn't be the first time that a
critical Israeli military program was delayed as the timeline is adjusted in
accordance with the timing of the receipt of US funds.

American coproduction drastically increases the exposure of the project to
the international supply chain crises: When the COVID crisis heated up we
even got the Mossad involved in procurement when we thought it was critical
to get certain supplies and equipment. I have no doubt that the Israeli
teams involved in manufacturing the systems will do anything and everything
to expedite production. American production partners would not have either
the same resources or agility to address supply chain challenges.

American coproduction would ultimately give the American authorities the
ability to delay or even halt supplies: Such a move could be in the service
of perceived American interests or in reaction to Israeli activities that
the White House isn't happy about.

American coproduction could even give the US certain veto rights over where
and with whom the equipment can be used.

And this laundry list doesn't even touch on how keeping this technology an
Israeli "black box" may serve to delay the development and implementation of
surface treatments and other methods by non-Israelis to reduce the efficacy
of the Israeli laser.

Let's be clear: We can afford to pay the tab ourselves and unlike Iron Dome,
which launches expensive interceptors which need to be constantly replaced,
the laser systems direct focused beams of light again and again and again
and again.

This time we need to do it alone.

IMRA - Independent Media Review and Analysis

Since 1992 providing news and analysis on the Middle East with a focus on
Arab-Israeli relations

Website: www.imra.org.il

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