Saturday, June 25, 2016

Should The U.S. Stop Subsidising Israel's Defense Industry?

U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu © Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

Eli Lake, Bloomberg: Obama Wants to Stop Subsidizing Israel's Defense Industry

If you want to understand just how special the U.S.-Israel relationship really is, look no further than the annual aid package. Israel is not only the greatest beneficiary of U.S. defense assistance, but also the only one allowed to spend a portion of that assistance on weapons and equipment from its own industry. Everyone else has to buy American.

President Barack Obama is now looking to end this U.S. subsidy of Israel's defense sector, according to U.S. and Israeli officials. They say the "offshore procurement" provision, unique to Israel's aid package, is one of the last obstacles to completing an agreement to extend aid until 2029. Obama would like to phase out the agreement that allows Israel to spend 26 percent of U.S. annual aid at home. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, so far, disagrees.

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WNU Editor: Why should the U.S. spend taxpayers money supporting another country's defense industry that is in direct competition with U.S. defense manufacturers .... it just boggles the mind .... but this practice has been ongoing for years.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

For many Israeli weapons systems the U.S. provides financial assistance. A lot of that money goes to Israel buys weapons and supplies FROM U.S. SUPPLIERS, BY U.S. LAW and agreements signed by Israel.

Other money goes into the development of weapons systems that are innovated by Israel and then co-produced by U.S. corporations.

U.S. taxpayer money also pay for pre-positioning arms in major complexes built by the U.S, Army Corps of Engineers and manned by U.S. personnel. It is a lot cheaper and safer to have the supplies stored on land in a friendly country than in ships.

In other words, the U.S. uses Israel as a pass through for keeping the U.S. arms manufacturers busy while Israel supplies innovation lacking in U.S. arms corporations.

The U.S. uses Israel as it did England in WW2 as an aircraft carrier and base of future secure operations. It is the only safe base the U.S. has in that part of the Middle East where it does not have to worry about Islamist and anti-American sentiment and potential hamstringing of U.S. operations. How much is that worth?

The U.S. spends boat loads of money on internal and external projects and wars with little return. The U.S. uses its money to support corporations that make billions of dollars and pay no taxes. Recent history demonstrates that the money the U.S. spends on Israel is chump change compared to the useless spending on so-called allies, moderates, wars of choice, and other black operations.

Israel is a good deal for the U.S. It pays back dividends unlike other U.S. investments and boondoggles.

Israel teaches the U.S. how to upgrade its weapons systems so that they are combat worthy.

Who else does so much to secure U.S. security and readiness?

Countries have mutual interests. Apparently, the mutual interests shared by the U.S. and Israel are worth the money and a lot more. Mutual interests insure mutual security. Mutual agreements keep Israel from shifting alliances as the U.S. ability or will to project power diminishes or is purposely hobbled.

U.S. presence and influence in the Middle East is waning. Should it also disengage from Israel and force Israel into the Russian sphere? Four trips to Moscow by Netanyahu suggest that Israel may already be preparing for the Obama withdrawal.

Israel, like the U.S., has had to shift so much defense spending to purchase the F-35 that it cannot afford to maintain appropriate levels of readiness. It would not be hard to imagine the U.S. strongly suggesting that Israel buy lots of F-35's rather than the upgraded F-15s received by Saudi Arabia, upgrades that the U.S Air Force does not even have.

Finally, supporting Israel makes sure that it does not have to use nukes other than as a last resort. How much is that worth to the U.S.?

Anonymous said...

Does it make sense now?

Aizino Smith said...

My understanding is that the Israelis get the money for the same reason the Egyptians do. It was part of Carter's peace deal.

It was a good deal.

Cargo to Egypt included wheat and M113s. Cargo to Israel included farm tractors.

See the difference? We do not have to teach the Israelis how to fish.

Well, okay, the Leftist Israelis need to go into remedial classes.

Aizino Smith said...

Israel has been given aid as part of a peace treaty. They also gave up a hell a lot of land and strategic depth.

Pakistan has also been given billions and it stabs us in the back.

See the difference?