Naval War College Review


Following the attack upon the USS Stark (FFG 31) by Iraqi Exocet missiles in May 1987, the U.S. Navy greatly accelerated its efforts to improve anti-ship missile defenses. Much emphasis was placed on improvements to point-defense missile and close-in weapon systems that could destroy the anti-ship missiles themselves ("hard kill"), on improvements to the performance of the Standard surface-to-air missile warhead and fuse against sea-skimming cruise missiles (another "hard kill" system), and on improvements to the integration of electronic warfare detection and other "soft kill" systems aboard ship and in embarked helicopters