- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Recent remarks by Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes have Republicans wondering if she knows what Israel’s “Iron Dome” defense system actually does.

The Democrat, who is taking on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell this November, made comments that suggested the missile defense system repels people who tunnel their way into Israel.

“Obviously, Israel is one of our strongest allies in the Middle East, and she has the right to defend herself,” Grimes said, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. “But the loss of life, especially the innocent civilians in Gaza, is a tragedy. The Iron Dome has been a big reason why Israel has been able to withstand the terrorists that have tried to tunnel their way in.”

The Iron Dome has been credited with keeping Israelis safe during the conflict in Gaza while the Palestinian side sustains heavy casualties.

The Grimes campaign clarified the candidate’s remarks Wednesday and downplayed the hubbub around the issue as a misreading of what she was trying to say about Israel’s use of resources.

“The Iron Dome is an integral part of Israel’s defense system which allows them defend themselves against missiles and focus their efforts on eradicating the terrorists who try to tunnel their way in,” Mrs. Grimes said through a spokeswoman.

But the National Republican Senatorial Committee seized on the remarks immediately, saying Mrs. Grimes had “embarrassed herself again.”

“Of course, the Iron Dome is a missile defense system that has saved countless numbers of Israeli lives … above ground,” the NRSC said on its website. “Grimes hopes to become a United States Senator.”