Israel Deploys 'Iron Dome' Rocket Shield

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BEER SHEVA, Israel -- For the past 10 years, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terror groups have fired thousands of rockets into southern Israel.  This low-grade war has been effective in killing, wounding, and spreading fear among more than a million Israelis. 

But how does the Jewish State stop these rockets that have terrorized its citizens for years?  Israel's answer is a new anti-missile system called "Iron Dome."  The first units of the multi-million dollar rocket shield were deployed on Sunday.

"The Iron Dome is part of the effort that Israel as a country is doing in order to deal with continuous attacks against Israel with the rockets that we saw for the last few years," Israel Air Defense Brig. Gen. Doron Gavish told CBN News.

The Iron Dome system is the only anti-missile system in the world designed to intercept short range rockets and is just one part of Israel's anti-missile defense. 

"We have the Arrow. We have the Patrio. Underneath, we have the Iron Dome. And what's still under development, we have David's Sling or Magic Wand -- it has two names. So that's what supposed to give Israel this complete active air defense," Israel Defense Forces Capt. Barak Raz explained. 

In the past few weeks, the number of rockets fired out of Gaza has increased significantly.  Some of those rockets - provided by Iran - have a range of 25 miles or more, putting more than a million Israelis within range.

"Unfortunately, this is the situation the people of Israel and southern Israel have come to live under," Raz said. "It's a very unfortunate threat, but again, we're here to make sure children can sleep at night.  People can go to work during the day, and life can go on as normally as possible." 

CBN News has learned that Hamas has acquired advanced rockets capable or of reaching the metropolitan areas of Tel Aviv in central Israel. 

The Iron Dome has passed several tests, but the Israeli army says the system is still being evaluated and they cannot guarantee 100 percent success.   

Still, if it's successful, Iron Dome could transform Israel's security situation and eliminate the chief weapon Hamas and other terror groups have in their arsenal against Israel. 

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