Defense Digest - April 2012

AIPAC's Defense Digest
A Summary of Key Articles Highlighting the U.S.-Israel Strategic Relationship
IN THIS ISSUE APRIL 2012
1. U.S.-Israel Joint Military Exercise Rescheduled for October 
2. U.S. Ambassador to Israel Highlights Iranian Nuclear Threat
3. Israel’s Patriot System to Receive Upgrade
4. U.S. Legion of Merit Award Presented to Israeli Official
5. Israeli Defense Firm Creates U.S. Jobs
FPO photo

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro spoke of the dangers of the Iranian threat. Read more...

 

 

1. U.S.-Israel Joint Military Exercise Rescheduled for October

Austere Challenge 12, the joint U.S.-Israel anti-missile defense drill that was postponed earlier this year, has been rescheduled to take place in October, The Jerusalem Post reported. The drill, which is unprecedented in size and scope, aims to establish joint task forces in the event of a large-scale conflict in the region. In conjunction with Israel’s missile defense systems, including the Iron Dome, Arrow and Patriot, the United States is expected to bring sophisticated weapon systems to simulate intercepting missiles in varied conditions. “Like other bilateral exercises, Austere Challenge 12 represents another milestone in the strategic relationship between the U.S. and Israel to promote regional stability,” said John Ross, spokesman for U.S. European Command.

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2. U.S. Ambassador to Israel Highlights Iranian Nuclear Threat 
U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro spoke about the threat of a nuclear armed Iran in an address in Tel Aviv, Ha’aretz reported. The comprehensive address focused on U.S. military, economic and strategic cooperation with Israel. Shapiro also noted the threats posed by the instability in Egypt and the rocket attacks from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. Iran “poses a grave threat to the security of the United States, to our allies, to our forces in the region and throughout the world,” he said.

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3. Israel’s Patriot System to Receive Upgrade
The Israeli Air Force announced that it will upgrade its Patriot Weapons System in the coming months. The first step in the comprehensive upgrade initiative to the U.S.-made system is to install advanced cameras that will enable it to construct more precise aerial images. The updated cameras provide significant technological advantages, such as night vision and far-range recognition capabilities.

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4. U.S. Legion of Merit Award Presented to Israeli Official  
Commander of the U.S. Air Force Gen. Norton Schwartz presented Israeli Air Force commander Maj. Gen. Ido Nehushtan with the Legion of Merit award in Washington this month, The Jerusalem Post reported. During the ceremony, Gen. Schwartz spoke about the importance of the relationship between the American and Israeli Air Forces, emphasizing that their shared intelligence on terrorist organizations in the region has “assisted the United States Air Force efforts in overseas contingency operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.” Maj.-Gen. Nehushtan is scheduled to step down from his position at the end of the month. This ceremony was part of a farewell visit to the United States that included meetings with high-level military officials and a visit to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter flight simulator.
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5. Israeli Defense Firm Creates U.S. Jobs    
ETLA North America, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries, expects to create 100 new jobs when it opens a facility in Baltimore, The Baltimore Sun reported. ETLA is an Israeli defense electronics firm and follows the precedent of other Israeli defense companies that create highly skilled jobs when opening U.S. facilities. The ETLA North America Baltimore location will employ primarily scientists, engineers, technicians, and programmers. The facility will open with support from the local and state government.
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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.