US and gulf allies pursue a missile shield against Iranian attack
The U.S. and several Arab nations are collaborating on a regional missile defense shield that would protect assets such as oil refineries, pipelines, military bases and even cities from an Iranian missile attack, The New York Times reported.
The system would include warning radars and command, control and communications systems that are compatible among the participating nations, the Times reported.
It will require Arab gulf nations to “put aside rivalries, share information and coordinate their individual arsenals of interceptor missiles” in order for the system to effectively deter Iranian threats, and combat actual attacks, the Times reported.
Last year, the Pentagon announced the sale of advanced missile defense radars to the United Arab Emirates, and this year a similar system will be put in Qatar, The New York Times reported, citing government officials and public documents.
Additionally, Arab nations around the Persian Gulf are looking for ways to secure food and water supplies in the event Iran succeeds in closing the critical Strait of Hormuz, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Much of the imports to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the UAE transit the narrow strait, which Iran repeatedly has threatened to block. While it remains uncertain whether Iran could, in fact, close off the shipping lanes, the U.S. and its allies are seeking ways to ensure it doesn't happen, including plans to de-mine the strait, the Journal reported.