Defense Digest - June 2007

1. Administration Officials Tout U.S.-Israel Missile Defense Cooperation
Two top State Department officials praised the success of U.S.-Israel missile defense during a recent joint House subcommittee hearing, JTA reports. Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation John Rood and Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Daniel Fried discussed Arrow’s favorable test results and emphasized the Iranian ballistic missile threat facing America’s allies in Europe and Israel.
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2. Report Orders Army to Use Israeli APS
The Institute for Defense Analysis told the U.S. army to reconsider purchasing Trophy, the Israeli-origin battle tank active protection system (APS), characterizing Trophy as “the most mature APS under development,” according to Globes. Trophy provides 360-degree protection for armored vehicles from anti-tank rockets and missiles. The institute’s report, which was commissioned by the Senate Armed Services Committee, also suggested that Trophy could be used to help develop U.S.-origin systems.
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3. Jointly Developed Fighter Pilot Helmet Contracted by Air Force
The Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS), a joint program of Boeing and Elbit’s Vision System International, will equip 321 U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard F-15 Eagles, USAF F-16 Fighting Falcons and U.S. Navy F/A-18E/F Super Hornets, Defense Industry Daily reports. The $69 million contract marks the program’s fourth full-rate production order, which has produced 2,500 systems during the past six years and demonstrates the JHMCS’s revolutionary effect on air combat.
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4. U.S. Airport Security Experts Learn New Techniques from Israel
Security officials representing airports from across the United States traveled to Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport to study its passenger screening system, The San Francisco Chronicle reports.  Israel’s security arrangements, which involve the design of all aspects of the airport from windows to trash bins, have successfully prevented terrorist attacks for decades. “The Israelis are legendary for their security,” said Steven Grossman, the director of aviation at the Port of Oakland and one of the participants and planners of the trip.
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5. Israeli Researcher Aims to Stop Terrorists from Poisoning Water Supplies
An Israeli researcher is developing new technology to prevent terrorists from contaminating water supplies, Israel21c reports.  The technology, which has received funding from NATO, aims to detect and neutralize any chemical poisoning residing in major water facilities.  Israel Schechter said he is confident the technology will soon be implemented in the United States in addition to Israel.
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6. U.S. Seeks Israeli-Developed Technology for Explosives Screening
The Transportation Security Administration has expressed interest in obtaining a new Israeli-developed machine that can detect traces of explosive material in airport carry-on items like laptops, medical equipment, cameras and other electronic devices, Congressional Quarterly reports. In addition to being more efficient than current screening methods, the new machine helps preserve passengers’ privacy, enabling airport screeners to examine the electronic devices without opening them.
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AIPAC's Defense Digest is a monthly summary of key articles highlighting the cooperative defense and homeland security programs central to the strong and mutually beneficial strategic relationship between the United States and Israel. For more information on these issues, please contact AIPAC's defense team at defenseteam@aipac.org.