Defense Digest - July 2012

AIPAC's Defense Digest
A Summary of Key Articles Highlighting the U.S.-Israel Strategic Relationship
IN THIS ISSUE JULY 2012
1. Pentagon and Lockheed Reach F-35 Agreement 
2. Obama Signs U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act
3. Obama Announces $70 Million for Iron Dome
4. Israel’s Elbit unveils Anti-Missile System
5. Panetta Travels to Israel, Promotes U.S.-Israel Relationship
FPO photo

President Obama announced an additional $70 million in funding for the Iron Dome. Read more...

 

 

1. Pentagon and Lockheed Reach F-35 Agreement

The Pentagon and Lockheed Martin Corp agreed on a $450 million program to enhance F-35 jets being sold to Israel, Reuters reported. The enhancements include electronic warfare equipment and Israeli-unique systems. The announcement comes ahead of Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta’s visit to Israel, and will increase the participation of Israeli companies, including Elbit Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries, in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program.

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2. Obama Signs U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act 
President Obama signed the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act, reaffirming America’s “unshakeable” commitment to Israel, JTA reported. The bipartisan legislation provides support for various defense systems, calls for expanded intelligence cooperation, and encourages a larger role for Israel within NATO. At the signing ceremony, the president said that it is a top priority “to deepen cooperation with Israel across the whole spectrum of security issues – intelligence, military, technology.”

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3. Obama Announces $70 Million for Iron Dome
President Obama announced an additional $70 million to fund Israel’s Iron Dome rocket defense system, YNet reported. While signing the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act on July 27, Obama announced the aid to help Israel expand production of the “critical” missile defense system, which targets incoming missiles and artillery shells, and has proved successful at stopping rocket attacks fired at Israeli civilians from close range, including from Gaza.

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4. Israel’s Elbit Unveils Anti-Missile System  
The Israeli defense technology company Elbit Systems Ltd. unveiled a new system to protect medium and large aircraft against missile threats, Flightglobal reported. The J-MUSIC system, which was unveiled at the Farnborough Air Show in London, is an advanced infrared fiber-laser system that acquires and tracks incoming missiles, and deflects them with a powerful laser beam. Elbit says the equipment is intended to protect large jets, including transporters, tankers and business jets.
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5. Panetta to Travel to Israel, Promotes U.S.-Israel Relationship    
In advance of a planned trip to Israel, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta plans emphasized the close American-Israeli security relationship and said that the two nations are united in support of international efforts to pressure Iran on its nuclear program, The Jerusalem Post reported. “I'm proud of the defense partnership that we've built over the past several years,” Panetta said. The secretary is on a week-long trip in the Middle East and North Africa, and is scheduled to visit Tunisia, Egypt, Israel and Jordan during his trip.
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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.