James Emery / CC-BY-2.0

The U.S. will provide Israel with a “windfall of hardware and technology,” the largest amount of military aid ever awarded to the Jewish state, The Washington Post reports.

Reaffirming the “unbreakable bond” between the U.S. and Israel, U.S. national security adviser Susan Rice said at the signing ceremony: “No other administration has done more for Israel’s security. … This is the single largest pledge of U.S. military aid to any country in U.S. history.”

Though Obama called for a resolution to Israel’s military campaign against Palestinians, the deal does not require Israel to adjust its deadly and debilitating blockade of the Gaza Strip or its colonization of the West Bank.

“Ultimately, both this MOU and efforts to advance the two-state solution are motivated by the same core U.S. objective that has been shared by all administrations, Democratic and Republican, over the last several decades — ensuring that Israelis can live alongside their neighbors in peace and security,” Obama said.

The Post continues:

The funds will be disbursed in equal amounts of $3.3 million to purchase goods and services, and $500 million a year dedicated to Israel’s missile defense systems, which protect the small nation from possible attacks by militant groups Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Israel will be able to use the money to purchase F-35s, the most advanced fighter jet that the Pentagon possesses. It will be the only country in the Middle East to have the jets, a situation designed to help Israel maintain what is known as its qualitative military edge. The first of 33 jets are expected to be delivered in December.

Netanyahu appears to have agreed to several major concessions. The deal says that Israel cannot directly lobby Congress for more aid, unless it is at war.

The pact also ends U.S. aid to the Israeli military for fuel purchases — a high-ticket item.

The new agreement also ends the amount of the aid that Israel can spend on purchases from its own defense industry.

Read more


—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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