North Africa/Israel: Seth Carus and Dov Zakheim April 6, 1998 On April 6, 1998, System Planning Corporation (SPC) hosted a roundtable discussion for the Rumsfeld Commission to discuss the ballistic missile threat to the United States from Israel, Libya and Egypt. Dr. Seth Carus of the National Defense University led the discussion. Dr. Dov Zakheim of SPC also participated. The following is a summary of the meeting, and highlights key areas of consensus. Israel Israel's ballistic missile program dates back to several missile and rocket programs in the late 1950's and early 1960's. Israel's military research and development establishment developed two missiles: the Luz, with a range of 27 km, and the Shavit II rocket, an experimental system. Jericho I Zakheim and Carus agreed that the Jericho I was Israel's first true ballistic missile program. They both asserted that little is known about the system, and that there is considerable debate about the range and payload specifications of the system. Some have stated that the missile has a range of 260 km, while others assert that it could be as great as 750 km. It is generally agreed that Israel has or had between 50-100 Jericho I missiles and that it was designed as a nuclear delivery vehicle. Jericho II The participants also agreed that Israel initiated development of a follow on to the Jericho I, the Jericho II in 1985. The Israelis initiated a series of test launches of this missile into the Mediterranean between May 1987 and March 1992. These missiles were tested to a range of 1300 km (800 miles), although little is known about the payload specifications during these tests. It is believed that this missile is more accurate than the Jericho I. It is also believed that the missile is very similar to the Pershing II missile, and that it has a radar terminal guidance system. It is unknown how many Jericho II missiles Israel has deployed, and whether they are armed with nuclear warheads. Jericho II B There are reports that Israel is building a follow on to the Jericho II, the Jericho II B, also known as the Jericho III. This missile could carry a 1000 kg payload to a range of 2,800 km. Shavit Carus noted that Israel has derived much of its ballistic missile technology from its space launch program, particularly from the Shavit space launch vehicle. It appears that the Jericho II's first two stages are identical to the Shavit's. Carus also concluded that a ballistic missile based on the design of the Shavit's first two stages could carry a 900 kg payload to a range of 4,850 km (3,000 miles), and a 500 kg payload to 7,600 km (4,700 miles). Both of the participants agreed, however, that Israel will probably not attempt to develop a missile with a range beyond that of the Jericho II B. There are no strategic advantages to do this. International Assistance Israel's ballistic missile programs have been aided by French and American technology acquired during the 1960's and 1970's. The participants also agreed that there is evidence of Israeli-South African cooperation. South Africa's ballistic missile program, code named Arniston by the CIA, was an advanced version of the Jericho I. Moreover, there is speculation that South Africa has provided Israel with a test-range for its ballistic missile programs. The participants agreed that this cooperation could still be ongoing. Carus also spoke of possible Israeli-Iranian cooperation during the late 1970's. In 1978 and 1979, Israel and Iran were negotiating weapons cooperation agreements with the Israelis on surface-to-surface weapons systems, anti-ship cruise missiles, and a version of the Jericho missile with a 750 kg warhead. There is no evidence suggesting that this cooperation continued after the Iranian revolution. Libya Carus provided a brief examination of Libya's past efforts to acquire ballistic missiles. Both Carus and Zakheim concluded that Libya does not have the infrastructure to support a missile program without foreign assistance. The nation has dubious research, development and testing capabilities. In addition, considering that the nation is small (2 million people) and relatively poor, they have a limited capability to obtain the required infrastructure to develop ballistic missiles. Although there has been some talk of Iraqi assistance, this cooperation may be occurring on a very limited basis. Egypt The participants agreed that Egypt's ballistic missile program dates back to the late 1950's. Egypt's efforts to generate its first type of ballistic missile system proved unsuccessful, largely because Israeli intelligence forces eliminated many of their scientists and technicians. Egypt was also a participant in the Condor program, a joint venture between Egypt, Argentina and Iraq. It appears that Egypt acquired some of the Condor's technology off the other two nations' efforts without expending its own resources. Egypt has started to develop the infrastructure to develop ballistic missiles, however. Egypt has developed a ballistic missile with North Korea that appears to be a modified Scud B or C. In fact, Carus concluded that much of the DPRK's ballistic missile program was developed in conjunction with Egypt. Carus concluded that Egypt will not present a threat to the United States by 2015. It simply does not have the technical and industrial infrastructure to develop a long-range ballistic missile without "major" amounts of foreign assistance. Carus argued that Israel does not need an ICBM to address its security concerns. Its current missile programs have been designed to garner prestige and respect in the Arab world, and to keep the attention of the Israelis.