President Barack Obama is moving to increase military aid to Israel to $3.15 billion, including $205 million for a short-range missile defense system. With cities and states in the United States selling off parks and closing programs (and the federal deficit reaching disastrous levels), it is astonishing that the Administration is still gushing out such money — particularly for one of the wealthiest nations on Earth.
Israel is experiencing an economic boom — unlike the United States, which has a debt problem that is now triggering international concerns, here. Recently, there have been objections that an astonishing percentage of Israelis do not pay taxes, particularly Orthodox families. Nearly one in five Israeli men between the ages of 35 and 54 do not pay taxes. Nearly 27% of Arab men and 65% of ultra-Orthodox Jews don’t work. Many ultra-Orthodox Jews are given a subsidy for religious studies. The non-employment rate for ultra-Orthodox men has tripled since 1970.
We have been following how cities and states are shutting down programs, increasing school class sizes, selling off public lands, and even considering eliminating whole grades to deal with shortfails in taxes. Yet, the Administration still believes that American citizens should subsidize the defense systems of foreign nations — on top of spending billions each month on Iraq and Afghanistan.
For the full story, click here.
For the defense system story, click here.
18 thoughts on “Obama to Ask For $205 Million To Give To Israel for a Rocket Defense System as Part of a $3.15 Billion Aid Package”
Thanks for the great post. It’s about time someone raised these issues. I get the sense that the tide of American public opinion is turning against Israel. AIPAC’s job is getting harder, given the Israeli’s own behavior, like Bebe’s nose thumbing to Biden, the theft of passports, the assassination team and other things cited on this blog.
Re the fracas with the announcement of new settlements when Biden visited, I have read some commentators suggest that it was just a mistake by a low level employee, so should be ignored. That’s just BS. It’s not who made the announcement or when, it’s the policy itself and Israel’s recalcitrance that’s wrong. How stupid do they think Americans are to buy this BS? Apparently, they think we’re pretty stupid.
Man, that would fix a lot of bridges, roads… or nothing at all when considering we can skip borrowing the $3bil from China to pass it on through to Israel. More homeless people on the corner with each passing day and we are subsidizing the world on money we don’t have.
I guess “change” is just a metaphor of providing weapon systems (or in Sudan turning your back to) on governments that routinely perpetrate human rights violations.
Meanwhile Gates talks about lowering the military budget.
Surprised that oil has not been mentioned yet.
I remember being told many years ago that the west relied quite heavily on information provided by Mossad about what the oil rich nations in the area were “up to”.
I guess that having a big enough “guard dog” in the area may also contribute to keeping prices within reason and the supply flowing.
where are the tea party patriots when ya need them. hey bubba, put down the cross, take off the hood, get off your cousin and protest this.
what is the military industrial complex?
What’s the problem? It is only a 200 million gift to an old friend!??
No, you haven’t been. The US public is a lot less sympathetic to Israel than it used to be, for various reasons (Gaza Massacre, Dubai Mossad assassination, Goldstone report, Lebanon invasion, Gaza blockade, etc.). However, the Israeli lobby still screams loud enough to get this policy pushed. And, as I noted, it is not only in the interests of the Israel lobby but in the interests of a much more powerful lobby — the military-industrial complex — to implement the Israeli missile defense system.
What Israel gives back to you and me is not the issue (because if it was, we certainly would not be doing this because our unequivocal support for Israel engenders Arab/Muslim enmity towards America). What matters is what the US government does for the most powerful lobbyists in Washington. Israel is just a way to conveniently launder the money.
Careful now FFN. You’ll have Mark Regev putting a fatwah out on you.
Having had a little time to think about this one, I am confused as to what Israel has given the US in return for this system. I can’t think of anything and the last I’d heard we were having Israeli government people saying things along the lines of US/Israeli relations being worse than they have ever been.
Have I been away?
Let’s not act like Israel is the only beneficiary of this action. It is likely that much of this money will end up in corporate America’s pockets. The people providing the missile system will likely be large American defense contractors: Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, McDonnell Douglass, Boeing, GE, etc. And these are the same entities that largely control government policy. So it is no surprise that they would lobby Obama, et al to divert public funds to their private coffers.
More generally, see: http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Chomsky/PentagonSystem_Chom.html
And yes, this is despicable and these funds should be going to public welfare. And of all places, Israel is probably the last country we should be providing military support for given their terrible history of conquest and humiliation of the adjacent defenseless Palestinian populace.
It’s kind of like when they’re coming to repossess the house, and dad is still on the phone with the last credit card that works, buying a new deadbolt for the back door. Not exactly fiscally smart.
It’s funny that the populace is expected to be financially responsible when the federal government and many of the states can’t seem to manage even the simplest finances.
Again, the American motto has become do what I SAY, not what I DO.
I think the point that is trying to be made is that while we are spending massive amounts of money on War and War Mongering Activities the infrastructure of the great country is crumbling at massive speed. It is not the spending on these activities it is the reallocation of resources to fund these activities. Everyone screams for a balanced budget. But at what cost?
On first blush I do agree with you, but I have two questions:
Is that all taxes or just income taxes? A lot of Americans don’t pay income taxes.
How big is Israel’s economy? If they couldn’t realistically afford this stuff even with a booming economy, I’m less opposed to giving it to them.
AY. I think you’re right.
Payoff for not bombing Iran – yet? Think of the cost if we have to mop up after that – again.
I guess they have one hell of a lobby. Is Jack still around?
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