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Reader comment on item: End U.S. Aid to Israel

Submitted by dante (United States), Jul 27, 2016 at 02:28

Daniel makes some good points but ...

while greater independence and self-sufficiency are admirable goals, Israel is not in a position to replace, quantitatively or qualitatively, the materiel supplied by the US. in every recent, local, limited, conflict Israel found herself quickly out of munitions, weapons, etc. and desperately needed re-supply from the US. one does not need to dwell upon the scandalous failures in lebanon (2006) under the "3 Stooges," failures in training, preparation, intelligence, in logistics, in command, and miscalculation of Israel's operational needs.

of course, this is not to say that certain US administrations, including the incumbent, have not used the leverage conferred by the dependent military relationship to Israel's considerable disadvantage. wiser and more skillful Israeli governments than Barak's or Olmert's governments could have better protected Israel's interests but the unavoidable and melancholy fact is that Israel's dependence does make it vulnerable to pressure.

one need waste little time with the bright idea to rely more on military personnel and less on US technology: US technology is great because it relieves the US (and Israel, as a client/consumer) of the need to put precious human resources at risk. yeah, I'll take smart bombs, Hellfire missiles, remote combat capabilities, etc. any day of the week over committing troops, for certain missions.

military and economic aid are not functionally equivalent. it is not merely a question of fungible dollars.

the article is imprecise in what seem to be contradictory recommendations: "scaling back" or reduction vs. termination. if termination is the goal, it is wildly unrealistic. can Israel produce "5th generation" fighters? what about "massive ordnance penetrators" or some other "bunker busters"? also, one source cited talked about "restoring" Israel's self-sufficiency. when exactly was that? when was Israel self-sufficient militarily? in the brief interval following French betrayal of Israel in '67? perhaps, in that brief period. no other comes to mind.

one would be glad to see Israel self-sufficient in every respect. Israel is a wonderful, creative, resourceful country with amazing capabilities and marvelous achievements but it is not a large country and it cannot benefit from the resources or the economies of scale available to a (still) great power like the US. nevertheless, to the extent that Israel can become more independent, it should, while maintaining close relations, people-to-people, government-to-government and military-to-military, with the US.



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