At the same time, active defenses should remain complementary to ground maneuvers, which should be regarded as the primary tool in every future operation. Thus, firepower will continue to be an indispensable facet in any military operation.
Israeli ground forces have come a long way in developing their firepower. “We started with mortars and guns, then incorporated aerial capabilities, and lastly developed other layouts consisting of both rockets and precision missiles,” Turgeman said. “We now employ and utilize our fire-delivery capabilities much more effectively and with a high capacity. These capabilities enable us to operate farther and with enhanced precision and lethality.”
Turgeman said that in past conflicts the enemy had centers of gravity that Israel could hit and “shock the system.” But in dealing with terrorist organizations, the centers of gravity are less prominent and recognizable. “In the context of hybrid war tactics, the antitank threat is the element with the most profound influence on maneuverability,” he observed.
“We understand that the commander fighting at the front should be able and capable to employ a wide range of lethal firepower,” he continued. “Our primary goal is to extend campaign-level fire to the tactical command. The challenge is to duplicate capabilities such as air strikes, overhead surveillance, attack helicopters, artillery and [ground-based, precision-guided munitions]. This would link the tactical moves that are available to a specific commander who would then employ them using his own judgment without interference.”
Turgeman said that as far as the steep-trajectory fire challenge is concerned, the Israeli battery could be similar to the Iron Dome missile defense system, pinpointing significant, threatening launches in intermediate and longer ranges, and intercepting the threats over enemy territory.
Rafael is developing a supposedly low-cost, lightweight derivative of the Iron Dome system designated Iron Flame. Packed with a variety of seekers to fit specific missions, Iron Flame will carry fragmentation or penetrating warheads, providing precision-attack capability to engage targets and answer immediate calls for fire support by tactical forces operating within its area.