Israel to Retire Aging Patriot Missile Systems

The Israeli Air Force is phasing out its Patriot surface-to-air missile systems, replacing them with more advanced technology, according to The Times of Israel.

The retirement process began in February and is expected to be completed within two months. The decommissioned Patriot batteries will be succeeded by David’s Sling and the Iron Dome, which are already operational components of Israel’s multi-tiered air defense network.

The American-made Patriot system saw limited action in Israel. While it successfully intercepted Iraqi Scuds during the 1991 Gulf War, its performance over the next two decades was modest.

Israel’s air defense system is a layered approach:

  • Iron Dome: This short-range system has been highly successful since 2011, neutralizing thousands of rockets, mortars, and drones launched from Gaza.
  • David’s Sling: This mid-range system defends against medium-range projectiles.
  • Arrow Systems: These long-range systems are designed to counter large ballistic missiles.

The fate of the retired Patriot batteries remains uncertain, though Ukraine has expressed interest in acquiring them to bolster its defenses against Russian missiles.

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