Israel was plunged into crisis when Hamas launched 5,000 rockets from the Gaza Strip on Saturday, an attack that came 50 years and a day after the outbreak of the 1973 Arab-Israeli War.
Israel’s air defense system, known as Iron Dome, is known around the world for being almost impenetrable. Deployed in several regions of the country to counter rocket attacks and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the Iron Dome has an accuracy of over 95%.
But during Hamas’ surprise attack on Saturday, the system failed to handle the barrage of rockets.
Although the Israeli Defense Forces have improved the Iron Dome’s missile and rocket interception capabilities over time, they still face difficulties when handling intense rocket fire.
The short-range ground-to-air system consists of three parts: detection and tracking radar, combat management and weapons control, and missile firing unit.
Hamas launched a saturation attack on Saturday to overwhelm the system. They fired 5,000 rockets into Israel from the Gaza Strip in 20 minutes. Because of this, the Iron Dome seemed to reach its interception capability.
Hamas has been trying for years to find a weakness in the Iron Dome system and has often succeeded in landing rockets on Israel by launching multiple rockets at the same time.
This time, the Iron Dome could only engage up to a certain point and was not able to intercept all targets.
Interceptors cost up to $100,000, while each interceptor missile costs around $50,000. This means that if Israel had managed to intercept all Hamas rockets, it would have cost them 2,079 million rupees.
Israel launched airstrikes on Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip – a densely populated enclave of 2.3 million people – in response to the militants’ surprise attack on Saturday.
Israeli forces said 1,200 people, mostly civilians, were killed in the attack, the worst in the country’s history.
In Gaza, officials reported that more than 1,000 people were killed during Israel’s sustained campaign of airstrikes and artillery.
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