Israel signals may ask for more US military aid over Iran deal

Israel gets $3 billion in annual military aid from Washington under a package due to expire in 2017.

By REUTERS
July 17, 2015 23:12
2 minute read.
Navy soldiers from the "Snapir" Unit train for any encounter on the high seas

Navy soldiers from the "Snapir" Unit train for any encounter on the high seas. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Israel signaled on Friday that it would ask the United States for increased military aid to counter any threats that may arise as result of the international agreement on Iran's nuclear program.

Israel gets $3 billion in annual military aid from Washington under a package due to expire in 2017 and has in recent years secured hundreds of millions of dollars in additional US funding for missile defense.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Israel and the United States had been in talks on future grants but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suspended them in the run-up to Tuesday's agreement which curtailed Iran's nuclear projects, which he condemned as insufficient.

Netanyahu plans to lobby the US Congress not to approve the nuclear deal.

But Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon on Friday appeared to regard congressional ratification as a foregone conclusion and described the deferral of aid discussions with Washington as an opportunity to assess the ramifications of the agreement.
Rice after Iran deal: US open to exploring ways to bolster security ties with Israel

"We talk about the American defense aid, it is clear that the situation here has changed and must be studied," Ya'alon told Israel's Channel 2 TV.

Ya'alon said Tehran's economic gains from a lifting of Western sanctions could boost Iranian-backed guerrillas in Lebanon and the Palestinian territories. It could also lead to an arms race with Arab states unfriendly to Israel, he said.



"We will ultimately, of course, have to go and talk about the trade-offs that Israel has coming to it in order to preserve a qualitative edge," he said, referring to Israel's military superiority in the Middle East.

This would not be next week, when US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter visits Israel, he said.

"It will be in several more months, certainly, after the (Iran) deal is approved and studied."

Before Netanyahu's suspension of aid talks, the two sides were close to a new package of grants starting in 2017 and worth $3.6 billion-$3.7 billion. US and Israeli officials said.

That sum would likely rise once talks resumed, they said.

In the interim, defense-related contacts between the allies have not ceased completely.

Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper said Defense Ministry director-general Dan Harel was in the United States this week to assess the Obama administration's planned military aid to Gulf Arab states and its impact on the Israeli "qualitative edge."

An Israeli official confirmed Harel's US trip to Reuters but did not comment on Yedioth's account of what was discussed.

Isaac Herzog, center-left leader of Israel's parliamentary opposition, closed ranks with Netanyahu against the Iran nuclear deal and said he would go to Washington "to work on advancing a package of security measures befitting the new situation."

Related Content

Hebrew Ben-Yehuda
July 21, 2018
Paper artist brings historical Jerusalem figures to life

By MAYA MARGIT/THE MEDIA LINE