Israel Offers Saudis the “Iron Dome” defense system – they reject it
Every now and then, something happens in the world that slips by almost unnoticed. Reuters, via the London based Arab paper Rai al- Youm, reported on Saturday that Israel offered its Iron Dome defense system to Saudi Arabia in order to secure their border with Yemen. Naturally, they rejected the offer.
But think about this for a minute- Israel offered to give the Saudis a mechanism with which to defend themselves against numerous rocket attacks that have been coming from the Yemen into Saudi Arabia. Several people have been killed in those attacks.
Their rejection shows that they definitely do not want any association with their “enemy” even if their enemy wants to help.
The Iron Dome system has a proven accuracy rate of 90%. The damage from Hamas and Hezbollah rockets would be far greater in Israel without it. Up to this point Israel had sold the system to only one country, which has been a heavily guarded secret.
The system is geared specifically to intercept short range rocket and missile attacks. Most nations looking for advance weapons system need something geared to more conventional warfare. It was developed by Rafael Advanced Defence Systems Ltd. Currently it offers little protection against mortar attacks, which have killed numerous Israeli soldiers and civilians.
“And Israel further curbs its potential client pool by not selling to countries with which it has no diplomatic ties – ruling out Gulf Arabs who, given their standoff with Iran, are looking into missile defense.” Jerusalem Post
According to the Jerusalem Post, the offer of the defense system was made in meetings in Amman last week. Thus far, the response has been ‘Meetings? What Israeli meetings?’
The House of Saud is at its core an “austere” form of Islam known as Wahhabism. It is no surprise that they would reject an offer of help from people they hate. They will now go elsewhere for the kind of weapons they seek. But will it be the right move? Probably not. Once you’ve turned down help from an unlikely source, the offer may not be repeated.