The intensity of rocket attacks on Israeli territory by Palestinian militias has decreased in recent days. On the night of 17 May, about 200 rockets were reportedly fired from the Gaza Strip. This is several times less than in the first days of the armed confrontation that began on May 10. Perhaps this indicates the depletion of Hamas’s missile arsenals. Our expert assessed the quality of the Palestinian missiles.

The web is actively discussing infographics that show the missiles used by the Palestinian groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad during the shelling of Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip. On the left, the pictures show “imported” ammunition, and on the right – what the Palestinians manage to produce in Gaza, in the conditions of a complete blockade, as well as regular Israeli airstrikes against missile activities identified in the Palestinian territory.


Assessing the Palestinian missile arsenal, as well as video evidence of its use during the next armed confrontation, I have discussed with some Indian military experts. A brief insight derived from these discussions is further discussed in this article.

Yes, here is, in fact, the entire arsenal used in Gaza. All these missiles are not high-precision, unguided. If we talk about locally produced missiles, then in general there is the level of approximately the period of the Great Patriotic War, and even worse.

Hamas arsenal acquired from abroad and modified in Palestine against Israel

Judging by the statistics of the launches of these missiles, about 12-15 percent of them generally fire abnormally – either fall or explode ahead of time. This is not an industrial production, but a handicraft one.

For those missiles that did fly, the collision on the ground is so great at a distance of fifteen kilometers, no reasonable aiming is provided.

If we recall the jet systems of the period of the Great Patriotic War, I mean the Soviet “Katyusha” and the German rocket launcher, then the crews still had firing statistics based on real launches and tests. The temperature of the ambient air, the strength of the wind, and its direction were taken into account. These were realistic statistics, and the launchers were specially made to more accurately launch this kind of unguided rockets.

The Palestinians have none of this. We see launches from the ground, from improvised launchers. Naturally, no ballistic conditions are taken into account. As a result – an unpredictable trajectory, and there is no need to talk about some kind of targeted shelling.


Domestically modified and domestically produced arsenal with Hamas in Palestine

The missiles received by Palestinians from abroad are not much better. It is clear that Iran is forefront to support their cause. But Tehran supplies to other countries and foreign armed formations not the most high-precision of its products. Basically, in Gaza, there are also quite primitive unguided or, at best, ballistic missiles with trajectory correction using gyroscopic instruments. We still don’t know how to assess their accuracy.

We know, of course, examples of launches of high-precision Iranian ballistic missiles from their territory against ISIS (Islamic State or Daesh) facilities in Syria. There were three or four such launches. But serious weapons were indeed used there.

Also known is the so-called retaliatory strike by Iran on a military base in Iraq, where American troops were stationed. The action was carried out in response to the assassination by the Americans of the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, General Qasem Suleimani. There were also quite accurate hits. But there are no such missiles on the list of Palestinian weapons owned by Hamas and the Palestinian organization.

Therefore, Hamas’s main stake is on the oversaturation of the target fire capabilities of Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system. The performance and ammunition capacity of the Israeli missile defense system Iron Dome is not infinite, like any air defense or missile defense system. Here we are witnessing a massive missile salvo from Gaza. Some of these unguided missiles do overcome the missile defense system. But getting them is completely unpredictable.