Israel and US hold simulated missile defense exercise
Published: Tuesday March 20, 2007
Israel and the United States on Tuesday concluded a joint computer-based exercise simulating a non-conventional missile strike, military sources said.
The joint air-defence drill, called Juniper Cobra 2007, was designed to improve "understanding and cooperation" between Israeli and US military forces, the Israeli army said.
The exercise included the testing of Israel's Arrow missile interception system as well as the US-produced Patriot system.
No real missiles were intercepted during the computer simulations, which took place over several days, but "both sides were pleased with the results of the exercise," the sources said.
Israel has in recent years been concentrating efforts on countering the threat of missile attacks from neighbouring Arab states and Iran, which has conducted several long-range missile tests in recent years.
Coupled with Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad's calls to wipe Israel "off the face of the map," the Jewish state -- believed to be the region's sole nuclear power -- has come to consider Iran's controversial nuclear plan as an "existential threat."
Israel and the United States accuse Iran of using its civil atomic energy programme as a cover for developing nuclear weapons, something Tehran strongly denies.
Israel and the United States conduct bilateral training exercises "on a regular basis," the army said.