The Mideastwire Blog

Excerpts from the Arab and Iranian Media & Analysis of US Policy in the Region

Iron Dome is Not a Game Changer: Two Reasons related to the teleology of technology

The main trend that is now apparent is that Hamas, EXACTLY like hizbullah early on, has dramatically improved its ability to continue to fire rockets on israel – exactly like hizbullah was able to in the 1990s and beyond. The critical thing is NOT the kill/casualty rate of Israelis in this type of warfare, but the ability to continue to disrupt and threaten Israel. That has ALWAYS been the key in the “balance of terror” for katyushas/rockets. Thus, even if intercepted (and some rockets are evidently killing and wounding even with the very very expensive, few iron dome sytstems in place) the “damage” is done – and i sufficient. In one sense, it is even preferred because being able to kill large number of Israeli civilians has a number of strategic disadvantages. In other words, hamas and Hizbullah are now fairly happy with the low kill rates, I believe, since the backlash from too high a rate is minimized but the “good” effects still obtain tactically and strategically.

Second – although there are some pretty wild claims now of 90% success rate for iron dome – which is not that critical because the kill rate is not the key but rather the maintenance of threat – the core idea is that hamas’s capabilities are vastly below hizbullah and certainly iran+syria. There are only a few iron domes available now and into the future: when the expected swarm tactics are used on multiple fronts you can say bye bye to the confidence over the current iron dome system and its capabilities.

Indeed – hizbullah knows and the IDF knows that the continued pressure on the few systems in place will be quickly broken should the northern front with hizbullah open up – indeed, imagine if hamas keeps it up a la hizbullah in 1992, 1993, 1996, 2006 for WEEKS…. One wonders at the need to re supply, the vast costs and the wear and tear on the system.

Bottom line – proclaiming the “game changing” nature of iron dome is not only premature – IT MISSES THE POINT.


Written by nickbiddlenoe

November 19, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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