If there is a sale of F-35 fighter jets from the United States to the United Arab Emirates, the first planes will arrive in the Gulf state in “six or seven years,” US Ambassador David Friedman told The Jerusalem Post.Friedman spoke to the Post in a prerecorded interview that will air on Thursday at 7 p.m. Israel time as part of The Jerusalem Post Annual Conference. The conference will broadcast live at www.jpost.com. “The Emirates have been trying to get F-35s for six or seven years,” Friedman said. “And the delivery time is probably another six or seven years from now.”Israel has been concerned that the pending sale, which was advanced concurrently with the US brokered peace deal between the Jewish state and the United Arab Emirates, would undermine the country’s qualitative military edge (QME) in the Middle East.When asked whether the sale would in fact undermine Israel’s QME, Friedman replied: “QME is a matter of law, not a matter of policy. It has been US law since 2008, and US policy a lot longer than that. Israel has dealt with the QME behind the scenes professionally and successfully for more than a decade; it is going to continue to work this way.”Sources close to the negotiations said on Tuesday that the US and the UAE hope to have an initial agreement on the sale of F-35 stealth fighter jets to the Gulf state in place by December 2.Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Defense Minister Benny Gantz held meetings with top US officials in Washington regarding Iran and Israel-US security cooperation.Gantz met with White House senior adviser Jared Kushner, US National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien and US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper.“Israel is the United States’ most important partner in the Middle East and the bonds between our countries are unshakable. Glad to welcome Minister of Defense Benny Gantz back to the Pentagon today,” Esper wrote on his Twitter account.“We commend the US efforts and its commitment to Israel’s security,” Gantz said after meeting with Kushner. “We will work in partnership to promote stability in the Middle East through normalization with other countries.”The two discussed ways to advance further agreements to secure the region’s stability, while ensuring that the preservation of Israeli security is a basic cornerstone understanding of the process.Gantz stressed at the end of the meeting that these historic achievements were led by the US administration, illustrating the importance and the friendship between Israel and the United States.Gantz emphasized to O’Brien that Israel would continue to act against Iranian entrenchment in Syria and the Middle East. He added that Iranian aggression had not ceased during this period either.When he met with Esper, Gantz was received by an official honor guard at the entrance to the Pentagon. The two also discussed Iran and Israel’s QME.