Operation Desert Storm:

Project Manager's Assessment of Patriot Missile's Overall Performance Is Not Supported

T-NSIAD-92-27: Published: Apr 7, 1992. Publicly Released: Apr 7, 1992.

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GAO discussed: (1) Army efforts to deploy an effective missile defense against Iraqi Scud Missiles; and (2) the Patriot Project Manager's analysis of the Patriot Missile's performance. GAO noted that: (1) in general, Army and supporting contractors overcame significant obstacles to provide tactical missile defense in Saudi Arabia and Israel, but two principal documents did not support the Project Manager's assessment that Patriot was successful against 70 percent of the Iraqi Scuds; (2) the first document cited was a spreadsheet that displayed information such as the date of each Scud launch, the Patriot unit or units that engaged it, and the result of the engagement; (3) review of the spreadsheet revealed inconsistencies between data presented and supporting records; (4) the second document included information on only one-third of Saudi engagements, assumed Scuds were destroyed unless warhead damage was found on the ground, and used limited methodologies; (5) the Project Manager's assessment of Patriot performance omitted important information that could have contributed to a better understanding of performance; (6) the assessment did not fully account for the total number of Patriot missiles fired, considered only the damage caused by Scud warheads, and did not include the number of false targets detected; and (7) project officials recognized limitations of their assessment and support records and have revised their methodology, eliminated the spreadsheet from consideration, obtained additional information from individual units, and sent an assessment team to Israel to resolve wide differences between the assessments.

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