From Reuters: Ground-based interceptor missiles to be deployed in the western United States in 2010 will be able to shoot down long-range Iranian rockets, Pentagon officials said on Thursday, brushing aside criticism of the Obama administration’s European defense overhaul.

Israel will also get added protection under the administration’s missile shield, the officials told Congress.

U.S. Navy ships equipped with Aegis missile interceptors, to be deployed in the eastern Mediterranean, “can provide an entire additional layer of defense over Israel,” the head of the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency said….

Pentagon policy chief Michele Flournoy, appearing before the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee, said the 30 ground-based interceptor missiles to be deployed in Alaska and California by the end of 2010 will “provide the United States with full protection of the homeland against an Iranian ICBM threat.” (photo: USAF)