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Israel Lobbies Congress for Additional Missile Defense Funds
International

Israel Lobbies Congress for Additional Missile Defense Funds

Israel reportedly bypassed the White House and asked the US Congress for the second consecutive year for an extra $317 million to be added to President Barack Obama’s budget for the next fiscal year in order to fund Israeli missile defense programs, Bloomberg wrote.
The requested funds would be in addition to the $158 million already proposed by the Pentagon for Israel’s security needs for the fiscal year that will begin on October 1.
The new allocation will allegedly finance the ‘David’s Sling’ and ‘Arrow-3’ programs – designed to intercept medium- to long-range missiles – as well as provide an anti-ballistic missile system.
According to Bloomberg’s report, the director of Israel’s missile defense organization Yair Ramati “visited lawmakers and aides to the congressional defense committees on February 2 and 3 to outline the case for more money and thank them for past assistance.”
Ramati completely bypassed the White House and the Pentagon. The report links the move to the tense relationship between the Obama administration and the Israeli government ahead of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress on March 3, which is likely to stress that the White House is pursuing a “bad deal” by seeking a nuclear deal with Iran.
The report revealed that Ramati’s proposal included $250 million to start production of the David’s Sling system, in addition to Obama’s $37 million request for development. Another $35 million Ramati requested for the initial production of Arrow 3, in addition to the $55.7 million the US administration is seeking for development.

 

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