After a some discussion in the comments section and a few emails from my uber-intelligent readers it seems we have come to a bit of a conundrum. A single strap-on Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) GPS guided bomb kit, a system that simply attaches some control surfaces, a GPS receiver, and a control computer to a dumb gravity bomb, costs $18,000 a unit, after thousands of units were built. A RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile used for close in defense by US and allied Navy ships costs about $500,000 per unit and is fielded in fairly extensive numbers. So with these numbers in mind, how on earth does each Iron Dome “Tamir” interceptor cost $65,000, especially considering the very limited production run of these specialized missiles so far??? If this widely reported cost per round is in fact true than we need to find out what the Israelis are doing to manufacture such a cheap yet advanced expendable munition because we could sure use that magic back here in the US. Especially considering that the US paid for a good part of the system’s development in the first place.
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