Although the Israelis admitted that this is for the first time that the Iron Dome SAMs are deployed near Egypt, there is nothing unusual in the development. They claimed that the SAM batteries are frequently transported from one place to another, which is a routine military practise. They denied that the deployment has anything to do with the changing political climate in Egypt, where the candidate of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mohammed Morsi was recently elected as president.
Regional political analysts were quick to point out that the relations between Israel and Egypt is going through a very difficult phase, ever since the dictator Hosni Mubarak was overthrown from power. Mubarak was a long time ally of Israel and his regime had played an important role in preventing the flow of arms and ammunition towards the Hamas militants based in Gaza strip.
Recently, two Grad missiles were fired from the Egyptian controlled Sinai region towards Southern Israel. The missiles hit the town of Mitzpe Ramon and Ovda Airport, both located close to the Egyptian border. Although there were no casualties, Israeli officials took the attack seriously and claimed that the militant elements within the Muslim Brotherhood were responsible for the act. In response, the Muslim Brotherhood denied that it had anything to do with the missile launches.
One IDF official had even claimed that the missile attack was just a warning for the things to come. Although Hamas members also denied that the organization had anything to do with the attacks, the IDF sources expressed serious doubt about its involvement. The Muslim Brotherhood is known to have strong ties with the Hamas.
The Iron Dome air defence system is capable of intercepting and destroying short-range rockets and artillery shells, up to a range of 45 miles. The IDF first used the system to counter the rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip, where it was successful in destroying more than 90% of the rockets fired towards Israel.