Israel gets US aid for anti-missile system
( AFP ) - The United States has given Israel 155 million dollars to develop an advanced missile interception system, Defence Minister Ehud Barak's office said in a statement on Thursday.
The money, which Congress approved on Wednesday, will help advance the development of a multi-layered anti-missile system that Barak presented to his US counterpart Robert Gates in Washington last month, the statement said.
The system, dubbed David's Sling, is intended to counter projectiles ranging from rudimentary rockets of the sort frequently used by Gaza militants to long-range missiles like those in the arsenal of Israel's arch foe Iran.
Israel has already successfully tested and deployed its Arrow anti-missile system, jointly developed with the United States, which is said to be able to deflect most missile strikes against the Jewish state.
Widely seen as the region's sole if undeclared nuclear power, Israel considers Iran its chief enemy after repeated statements from President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that the Jewish state should be wiped off the map.