As revealed in the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) signed by President Barack Obama last week, Israel had asked for $102.7 million to fund its missile program—but instead was awarded $267.5 million.
The NDAA—the US’s premier defense budget allocation law—authorizes the use of American taxpayer money for Israel in the following areas:
- $150 million for Israel’s “David’s Sling Weapon System”;
- $41.4 million for Israel to “procure the Iron Dome short-range rocket defense system.”
- $15 million for Israel’s “Arrow 3 Upper Tier Interceptor Program.”
Incredibly, the NDAA actually claims that these tunnels are also a threat to America: Section 1279 of the 2016 NDAA sates that the “Secretary of Defense, upon request of the Ministry of Defense of Israel and in consultation with the Secretary of State and the Director of National Intelligence, is authorized to carry out research, development, test, and evaluation, on a joint basis with Israel, to establish anti-tunnel capabilities to detect, map, and neutralize underground tunnels that threaten the United States or Israel.”
Israel is to be given at least $25 million for this “tunnel” research—which they call “terror tunnels” even though the United Nations High Commission on Refugees Commission of Inquiry on the Gaza Conflict found that “the tunnels were only used to conduct attacks directed at IDF positions in Israel in the vicinity of the Green Line, which are legitimate military targets” (United Nations Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict, 2015-06-22. Geneva: United Nations. p. 31).
These four amounts listed above add up to $231.4 million—but the budget allocation has been set at $267.5 million, apparently in expectation of some sort of escalation in costs over the coming year.
The priority given to Israel even dominates other areas of the US defense industry in the act. For example, Section 1278, which deals with the “sale of certain fighter aircraft to Qatar,” the US Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is obliged to present to Congress a “briefing on the risks and benefits of the sale” of those aircraft in terms of how it affects the “preservation by Israel of a qualitative military edge.”
In other words, the law has as its intention the cancellation of any technology which might put any Middle Eastern state on any sort of military par with the Jewish state.
This direct grant to Israel is only the tip of the US aid iceberg. According to the US Congress’s own latest Congressional Research Service report on US Foreign Aid to Israel, dated June 10, 2015, Israel gets at least $3.1 billion a year in military aid alone.
This figure is currently under renegotiation with the Obama administration, and is set to increase to $50 billion, or $5 billion per year.