Despite the public tension between the U.S. and Israel over Iran’s nuclear deal, privately Israel has been appealing to get more U.S. aid for missle defense programs.
According to CNN, Israeli officials are asking lawmakers for $300 million in additional funds for the country’s missile defense system – on top of the $155 million that has already been requested of Congress. The funding would be used to fund the Arrow 3 missile, which is “designed to counter longer-range Iranian ballistic missiles.” The money would also fund the David’s Sling missile defense system, for shorter-range missiles.
Although it is unknown just how the Pentagon will react to Israel’s request for additional funding, it is reportedly likely that the Pentagon’s budget would have to be cut in order to pay for the request.
News of the request comes following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress, during which he objected to the nuclear deal between Iran and the U.S. While Netanyahu’s objection to the deal could negatively impact Israel’s attempts to obtain additional funding, National Security Adviser Susan Rice said in an address on Monday that the U.S. would continue to support and protect the country’s security.
“Last year, we provided Israel with the largest package of security assistance ever. And that's money very well spent,” Rice said. “Because it goes directly to bolstering Israel's ability to defend itself, by itself, in a very tough neighborhood.
“We're maintaining Israel's qualitative military edge with new defense technologies and access to the most advanced military equipment in the world,” Rice added.
Source: CNN / Photo Credit: telegraph.co.uk