"The firing of the Iron Dome system's rocket-intercepting missiles during Operation Pillar of Defense cost the State NIS 100 million (about $27 million)," Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter revealed on Thursday.
Speaking at a closed conference, Dichter briefed home front officers, police officers and heads of local authorities on the lessons drawn from the aerial campaign against terrorists in Gaza. Addressing the Iron Dome system's success in intercepting rockets fired toward Israeli communities during the conflict, the minister said "Show me another NIS 100 million investment that yielded such a return."
According to data provided by the Israeli Air Force, 1,506 rockets were fired toward Israel during the latest round of violence. The five Iron Dome batteries intercepted 421 rockets with an 84% success rate. Hamas' accuracy with regards to hitting populated areas within Israel remained below 7%, the statistics show.
The head of the Iron Dome project in the Defense Ministry recently told Ynet, "In the Second Lebanon War some 4,000 rockets were fired at Israel and about 1,000 hit populated areas. The Iron Dome system would have intercepted most of those rockets, and it would have cost us $50-100 million."
During the conference, Dichter said "If we had to choose between the terror that claimed the lives of more than 1,000 Israelis over a period of only a few years and the 1,500 rockets (fired at Israel) during Pillar of Defense, which we can deal with, then dealing with the rockets is preferable."
According to the minister, the Palestinians' military capabilities are also improving. "The accuracy rate of their rockets is increasing. In any scenario we discuss, the attacks on the home front will emanate from Lebanon in the north and Gaza in the south. We must make certain that the West Bank is not 'contaminated' with these capabilities."