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Always at the forefront of Arab states when it came to the development of its armed forces and armament industry, during the 1970s Iraq embarked on an ambitious program of becoming self-sufficient in production of almost all equipment and ammunition necessary for its armed forces. Indeed, during the following decade, many of the related projects became a necessity because of the lengthy and costly war with Iran. The most ambitious – and probably the best-known – such projects were related to the production of ballistic missiles, the efforts resulted in the construction of a factory for production of rocket propellant at Hillah and another for the assembly of ballistic missiles at Fallujah. A direct result emerged in early 1988, when Iraq deployed the al-Hussein ballistic missile, an extended-range variant of the Soviet-made R-17E - Scud to strike Tehran in Iran in the course of the so-called War of the Cities.
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