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Israel's Iron Dome Is Amazing, and That's a Problem

Three Iron Dome rockets explode to intercept rockets launched from the Gaza Strip by Palestinians militants, as seen from the Israel-Gaza border in southern Israel,  on July 10
Three Iron Dome rockets explode to intercept rockets launched from the Gaza Strip by Palestinians militants, as seen from the Israel-Gaza border in southern Israel, on July 10Photograph by Lefteris Pitarakis/AP Photo

Israel’s astonishingly effective Iron Dome air defense has prevented Hamas from killing Israelis and spreading terror in the civilian population. Ironically, though, the better Iron Dome works, the less sympathy the rest of the world has for a nation that remains under rocket attack.

Israel hardly feels like a place under assault from close range. Bars, restaurants, and the Mediterranean beaches are still busy. Businesses are open. Although traffic is lighter than normal, the roads are hardly abandoned. Incoming rockets that would ordinarily wreak havoc are being blown up in the air, causing nothing but a boom, a puff of white smoke, and falling debris. Iron Dome’s success rate hovers around 90 percent. No other system in the world is as effective in shooting down short-range and medium-range rockets.