"Defense Minister Ehud Barak is considering purchasing or borrowing several Phalanx automated cannons from the United States. The cannons intercept incoming mortar shells and short-range rockets, and would be used to defend Sderot and other Negev towns from rocket fire from the Gaza Strip. Barak, who left Israel last night for a visit to Washington, is expected to ask U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to appraise the Phalanx's performance. That assessment will be used to help the government decide whether to bring the anti-missile system to Israel...However, several Defense Ministry officials said the Phalanx system is not effective enough, and argue that Israel should focus on developing the Iron Dome defense system, which will not be ready before 2011..."
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