Israel Seeks Enormous Military Aid Hike Over Iran

US Would Bump Annual Aid to $4.5 Billion

Right now, the US gives Israel $3 billion in military aid annually, part of a package negotiated back in 2007. It was a 10-year package, and Israel is looking for a big bump for the next 10 years.

According to officials familiar with ongoing talks, the Netanyahu government wants $42-$45 billion over the 2018-2028 period, and that President Obama had already agreed to that level in principle.

That’s a 50% hike in aid, and that’s above and beyond the other military subsidies Congress is always slipping in bills. Israeli officials are also clear it doesn’t include the package they intend to demand on the Iran nuclear deal.

For awhile, there’s been talk of the State Department trying to negotiate a big one-off arms package for Israel in return for them stopping their lobbying against the Iran civilian nuclear deal. The “compensation components” are expected to include a number of F-35 warplanes and other equipment.

Israel’s government is said to be split on the timing and size of the Iran package demands, with the military hoping to make demands soon, and top foreign ministry officials believing that they should hold off for awhile in hopes of getting even more concessions from the US later.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.