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November 20, 2014

Israel offers modified IRON DOME missile defence system to India

A senior Israeli defence ministry official who is currently in New Delhi has informed the Ministry of Defence that Israel is ready to tweak it sophisticated, all-weather mobile air defence system, the Iron Dome to meet India's security needs.

The hi-tech Iron Dome system is designed to intercept and destroy short range rockets and artillery shells fired at its borders. However the India's requirements are different and it would not require the Iron Dome to stop rockets and artillery shells at the border. Israel has a sizeable population that borders with Palestine from where rockets are fired and that is not the case with India.

Indian cities are located further inland and not close to Pakistani borders. The Israeli official said that Israel would modify the Iron Dome system to protect Indian cities from any kind of aerial threat. Israel is ready to work with India to increase the interception range of the Iron Dome Missile, make it capable to detect and intercept LACM's (Land Attack Cruise Missile) which can be fired from Pakistan in the event of a war and also intercept heavier long range rockets from Multi-Barrel Rocket Launchers (MBRL). The Iron Dome system has successfully destroyed an incoming Grad rocket fired from a launcher from Gaza a few years ago.
 If Israel's Iron Dome would be capable of intercepting rockets and missiles that are in possession with Pakistan then it would definitely get the attention and impress the Military decision makers in New Delhi.

Israel a few years ago had offered the Iron Dome Missile Defence System to the Indian Armed Forces but the Indian Air Force had turned down the offer saying that the system does not cater to India's threat environment and it requires major modifications to meet Indian needs. There are rumours that the MoD wants to place the Iron Dome batteries around strategic assets to protect them from aerial threats but no official statement has been made.

The DRDO too has been working on a Short Range Interceptor which will be capable of detecting and destroying incoming enemy cruise missiles, conventional artillery and short rage battlefield ballistic missiles which Pakistan has been pursuing to counter India's dreaded Cold Start Doctrine.

DRDO's interceptor will be able to provide a shield against incoming Pakistani missiles to advancing conventionally superior Indian forces that will cut Pakistan into half in less than a week. There are inside reports that the DRDO's interceptor is planned for testing in early 2016. It is planned for induction and mass scale production for the armed forces by 2018.

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