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Jerusalem (AFP) March 2, 2009
Israel's state comptroller issued a scathing report on Monday accusing the defence establishment of wasting time and money in the development of a rocket protection shield.
"Huge sums have been wasted because of hazardous decisions for the development of an anti-rocket defence system over the past eight years," State Comptroller Micha Lindenstraus said in her annual report, which paints a picture of bureaucratic waste and irregularities.
Israel's Rafael weapons research company has been tasked by the government with developing the so-called Iron Dome and Magic Wand defence systems.
Rocket attacks on southern Israel have continued on an almost daily basis despite a devastating 22-day offensive against the Gaza Strip in December and January that had the stated aim of halting the fire by Palestinian militants.
In the summer of 2006, Lebanon's Hezbollah militia fired more than 4,000 rockets at Israel, paralysing the northern Galilee region for 34 days and prompting about one million Israelis to flee south.
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