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Ignore the Pundits: US-Israeli Security Relations Are Stronger Than Ever
defenseone.com In the turbulence that has followed House Speaker John Boehner’s invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before Congress, commentators have universally described the U.S.-Israeli relationship as in “crisis” or “on the brink.” The relationship is widely perceived as unusually dysfunctional and personally bitter. Watching this, one might think the two sides are barely on speaking terms. But all this drama masks an important fact: under President Barack Obama, the U.S.-Israeli security relationship has become stronger than ever. Now it’s easy for American officials (or former officials) to make such an assertion. So listen to Israeli leaders. Former Defense Minister Ehud Barak has said there is more “intimacy” between the two militaries than ever before. Current Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon describes the relationship as “deep and intimate, and unprecedented in its scope.” Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador in Washington who has been in the middle of the recent imbroglio, says his government appreciates how the Obama administration has “upgraded security cooperation” with the Israelis. And Netanyahu himself recently called the defense ties a “remarkable partnership.” Of course, this starts with the significant security assistance theU.S. provides the Israeli military – well over $100 billion during the past few decades, and increasing in the past few years.
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