Defense Digest - February 2012

AIPAC's Defense Digest
A Summary of Key Articles Highlighting the U.S.-Israel Strategic Relationship
IN THIS ISSUE FEBRUARY 2012
1. Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Visits Israel
2. U.S. Ambassador Praises Israeli Defense Company
3. U.S., Israeli Companies Announce Joint Development of Arrow-3
4. Israel Increases Defense Budget Amid Regional Threats
5. U.S., Israel Joint Military Drill Will Resume
FPO photo

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro praised Israeli technology that has saved U.S. lives. Read more...

 

 

1. Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Visits Israel

Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, visited Israel last month to meet with Israel’s top military and political leaders, The Jerusalem Post reported. The meetings focused on how the United States and Israel can best cooperate to meet the regional threats and challenges each country faces, particularly Iran’s nuclear program. “We have many interests in common in the region in this very dynamic time and the more we can continue to engage each other, the better off we’ll all be,” Gen. Dempsey said.

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2. U.S. Ambassador Praises Israeli Defense Company 
U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro visited the northern Israel-based Plasan factory, which manufactures vehicle and body armor that is used by the U.S. and Israeli militaries, according to a video produced by the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv. Amb. Shapiro saw the full range of products Plasan develops, and praised the company for developing armor that has saved thousands of American lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Today, I had the chance to visit a place that really exemplifies the support Israel gives to the United States’ security,” Amb. Shapiro said.

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3. U.S., Israeli Companies Announce Joint Development of Arrow-3
Boeing and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) will expand their collaboration on the jointly developed Arrow-3, Globes reported. The goal of the recent agreement is to develop new opportunities in the missile defense arena, where Boeing and IAI have worked together for 10 years. Arrow-3 is funded by Israel and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, and will provide both countries with advanced capabilities to intercept long-range missiles.

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4. Israel Increases Defense Budget Amid Regional Threats  
In response to increased threats and regional instability, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced the government will increase the defense budget by $700 million, Yahoo News reported. The government had reviewed a recommendation to cut defense spending in favor of social programs, but the prime minister determined that an increase in defense is required in light of the security challenges Israel faces.
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5. U.S., Israel Joint Military Drill Will Resume    
The United States and Israel will hold a massive joint military drill later in the year, The Jerusalem Post reported. The drill, named Austere Challenge 12, was postponed for technical reasons, but will be rescheduled for the spring. “Such postponements are routine and do not reflect political or strategic concerns. The United States and Israel remain committed to holding the exercise,” Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren said.
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AIPAC's Defense Digest is a monthly summary of key articles highlighting the cooperative defense programs central to the strong and mutually beneficial strategic relationship between the United States and Israel. For more information on these issues, please contact AIPAC's defense team at defenseteam@aipac.org.