Last week’s reports of a deal in the making in which the US would give Israel a massive bump in military aid in return for their acquiescence on the Iran nuclear deal is confirmed this weekend by Ynet, who quotes State Department officials as saying the US is prepared to pay “a hefty price to get some quiet from the Israelis.”
While the reports are that Israeli officials are resigned to this happening at some point, the indication is there is a major split among top officials as to how and when to proceed.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry is said to oppose any direct dealings with the Obama Administration at this point, believing that this would amount to an admission of their willingness to back off on the Iran deal, and that it would “only be a question of price” at that point.
The Foreign Ministry are also concerned, having been the ministry heavily campaigning internationally about the “threat” of the deal, that they will appear to have surrendered to the US.
By contrast, Israel’s Military Intelligence division believes that Iran is already a “done deal” and that the longer they wait, the less pressure there will be for the US to pay up. The military will be the primary recipients of this US funding, and believes they can get the most out of it by making the deal now, not later.
US State Department officials have expressed puzzlement about Israel’s hesitance in naming a price, but it likely that this split will continue for awhile until Israel issues actual demands.