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Congress Scraps Its Plans to Procure More Iron Dome Against Cruise Missiles

The US Congress scrapped its plans to buy more Rafael-Raytheon developed Iron Dome against Cruise Missiles, a move which is pushed by Army for years now. FY22 National Defense Authorization Act has been released this week and will be passed to the White House and will be taken for vote by the senate members of Congress. According to reports, the Congress would eliminate the requirement of Army to pursue Indirect Fires Protection Capability or IFPC.

The information is mentioned in the summery of the legislation. IFPC defends the fixed and semi-fixed sites from drones, mortars, Cruise Missiles, and other defense systems. However, according to the new provisions, the Congress will eliminate the requirement to deploy interim Cruise Missiles capabilities. The US Army is already procured two Iron Dome batteries and has been training air defenders. Among the two, one iron dome battery is deployed to Gaum.

Prior deployment the Iron Dome underwent capability test called Operation Iron Island. The iron Dome was deployed following the capabilities test of the system. Congress in FY19 NDAA required the Army to procure four interim Cruise Missiles defense batteries.

Lawmakers required Army to select two batteries and field them by FY 2021 and two subsequent batteries until Sep 2023. But, the Army stressed that it needs IFPC system and not Iron Dome batteries. Soon, the contract of $247 million was finalized to build prototypes for its IFPC system.

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