U.S. Ships Eye Missile Defense Role

[Reuters] Dan Williams - The USS Higgins is one of 18 American ships deployed globally with Aegis interceptor systems capable of blowing up ballistic missiles above the atmosphere. According to a regional map issued last month by the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, a Mediterranean-based Aegis could cover southern Turkey, Lebanon, Israel, the Palestinian territories and north Egypt in the event of a missile war. Another ship, deployed in the Gulf, would similarly protect local Arab states. Israel already hosts a U.S. strategic radar, X-band, and its Arrow II missile interceptor, which is partly underwritten by Washington, is inter-operable with Aegis. Arrow designer Uzi Rubin said Aegis could be brought into line with Israel's air defenses "at the flick of a switch." "I think it is very important that the United States make Aegis ships available should there be an attack by Iran, with their firepower joining our firepower," he said.

2009-09-08 08:00:00

Full Article


Visit the Daily Alert Archive