US missile defense system had only 25% success rate during Iran attack

9:41 04.05.2024 •

Of 8 SM-3 interceptors, only 2 reportedly intercepted their ballistic missile targets.

Only a fraction of the ballistic missile interceptors launched by the US military intercepted their targets during Iran's large-scale missile and drone attack on Israel on the night of April 13, journalist Amir Bar Shalom of ‘Galai Tzahal’ reported.

According to the report, of the eight SM-3 missiles fired by the American forces, only two reached their target. This constitutes a failure rate of 75%. The SM-3 is a ship-based surface-to-air missile used to intercept short and medium-range ballistic missiles. This was the first time SM-3s were used in combat. An American Patriot missile battery was also deployed and shot down at least one ballistic missile.

However, Bar Shalom emphasized US Air Force pilots, together with British, French, Jordanian, and Israeli forces, shot down hundreds of drones before they could reach Israel. In addition, no such issues were found in the interception of drones and cruise missiles.

Moreover, the US systems provided the widest radar image of a missile attack.

Iran's attack included about 170 attack drones, over 30 cruise missiles, and over 120 ballistic missiles, making it one of the largest missile and drone assaults of its kind in military history.

About five ballistic missiles succeeded in reaching their targets, causing minor damage in an Israeli Air Force base in the Negev. It has not yet been disclosed if the ballistic missiles that struck the base were the ones the SM-3s missed or if those missiles were intercepted by Israel's air defense systems as they got closer to their targets.

…This story once again raises the question of the effectiveness of Western, including USA, air defense missiles. Only 25 percent of “success” is a failure.


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