Morocco has acquired the Israeli Barak MX Air and Missile Defense System. The system, which is designed to intercept a variety of aerial threats, including cruise missiles, drones, and rockets, was delivered to Morocco last week as part of a $400 million deal.
The Barak MX system is based on a modular and scalable architecture that allows it to adapt to different operational scenarios and threat levels. It consists of a command and control unit, a multi-mission radar, and several types of interceptors, such as the Barak 8ER, which has a range of 150 km, and the Barak 8MR, which has a range of 70 km.
The system is also compatible with other Israeli-made sensors and weapons, such as the Iron Dome and David’s Sling systems, which are part of Israel’s multi-layered air defence network. The Barak MX system can also be integrated with NATO’s air defence systems, according to the Jerusalem Post.
The delivery of the system to Morocco comes amid a warming of relations between Israel and several Arab countries, following the signing of the Abraham Accords in 2020. Morocco was one of four Arab countries, along with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan, that agreed to normalize ties with Israel under US mediation.
The deal also included US recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty over the disputed Western Sahara region, which is claimed by the Polisario Front, a separatist movement backed by Algeria. The move sparked criticism from some African countries and human rights groups, who accused the US of undermining the UN-led peace process in the region.
Morocco’s acquisition of the Barak MX system is seen as a boost to its military capabilities and regional influence. The system will enhance Morocco’s ability to defend its airspace and its strategic assets, such as its nuclear power plant in Ouarzazate and its phosphate mines in Khouribga. It will also deter potential attacks from its rivals, such as Algeria and Iran, which have been accused of supporting the Polisario Front.
Barak MX Air and Missile Defence System
The Barak MX system is developed by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), a leading company in the field of air defence that has been providing innovative solutions for Israel and other countries for decades. The Barak MX system is based on the acclaimed and field-proven Barak family of interceptors, which have been successfully deployed in naval and land platforms.
The Barak MX system consists of three main components: the Barak Battle Management Center (BMC), which creates and manages a unified multi-sensor aerial picture, coordinates the force operation networks and manages the launch arrays; the Barak Interceptors, which are vertically launched missiles with active RF seekers that can engage targets at different ranges and altitudes; and the IAI’s Fully Digital Integrated Phased Array Radars, which are available in various sizes and configurations and can detect and track multiple targets simultaneously.
The Barak MX system is designed to provide a single integrated solution for multiple simultaneous aerial threats from different sources and different ranges, such as fighters, sea-skimming and cruise missiles, tactical ballistic missiles, UAVs, helicopters and gliding bombs. The system can be tailored to fit any mission, whether it is point defence, area defence or ballistic missile defence, and any battle condition, whether it is naval, land-based or joint taskforce coordination.
The Barak MX system is also software-based and future-adaptable, meaning that it can be easily upgraded and modified to cope with new threats and requirements. The system can also be integrated with any existing or new sensors, such as legacy radars or electro-optical systems.
The Barak MX system has been adopted by seven countries for national ground-based air and missile defence, naval air and missile defence, and wide-area air defence missions. The system has also demonstrated its capabilities in several trials and operational scenarios, proving its high performance and reliability.
The Barak MX system is a vanguard in air and missile defence, offering a state-of-the-art technology that empowers military personnel to monitor threats from various directions in real-time and to respond effectively with optimal interception solutions. The system is a result of IAI’s extensive experience and expertise in air defence, which has been accumulated over decades of research, development and operation.