Iron Dome benefits the US
The remarkable performance the US-Israel jointly-produced Iron Dome mobile, all-weather, anti-missile defense system – during the May 2021 Gaza war against Hamas terrorists – was another milestone in the mutually-beneficial US-Israel alliance in the face of mutual terrorist threats and in the pursuit of cutting-edge technologies.
The Iron Dome was fully-developed by Israel, mostly funded by the US, and co-manufactured by Israel and (mostly) the US. Upon completion of the development by Israel’s RAFAEL, the game-changing Iron Dome technology was shared with the US’ Raytheon, which spared the US many years and mega-billions of dollars of research and development.
Moreover, the Iron Dome performance during the recent Gaza War has raised the interest of several countries (e.g., South Korea, Japan, Singapore, India, Poland, the Baltic states and Latin American countries) to acquire the system, which will increase US exports and expand the employment base of the US defense industry.
In addition, the US Army may expand its existing inventory of two Iron Dome batteries, leveraging Israel’s battle experience – which has systematically enhanced the performance of the Iron Dome – in order to advance the defense of its own soldiers.
Hamas – a mutual threat to Israel and the US
Israel’s recent war in Gaza was against Hamas Islamic terrorists, a proxy of Iran’s Ayatollahs, whose machete is at the throat of every pro-US Arab regime, and whose strategic goal is to dominate the Persian Gulf, the Middle East and beyond, by overwhelming the US.
Hamas is a branch of the global Muslim Brotherhood terrorist-political-social network, and a role model of repression and terrorism, which throws its political opponents off the roofs of Gaza towers.
Both Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood – as enunciated by Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna, its key strategist Sayyid Qutb and its top contemporary authority Yusuf al-Qaradawi – view Israel as an “infidel,” illegitimate entity in the “abode of Islam” and a strategic beachhead of the US. They are committed to a “holy war” against the Jewish State, in order to advance the Quran-based mega-goal of dominating the world under a universal Islamic society, which requires the (peaceful or violent) submission of the “infidel” West to Islam. Hence, the multitude of Muslim Brotherhood organizations from Pakistan in the east to South and North America in the west.
Thus, Yusuf al-Qaradawi declared that “Islam will return to Europe as a victorious conqueror after having been expelled twice. This time, it will not be a conquest by the sword, but by preaching and spreading [Islamic] ideology…. The spread of Islam until it conquers the entire world paves the road to the return of the Islamic Caliphate….”
The Muslim Brotherhood considers migration of Muslims to the West as a tactic to overwhelm the “infidel,” just like the 7th century migration (Hijrah) of Muhammed, from Mecca to Medina, which paved the road to the establishment of the Islamic Empire from the Arabian Peninsula to Spain.
Prof. Albert Hourani, who was a leading Middle East historian at Oxford University (A History of the Arab Peoples, pp. 445-446) wrote that the tenets of the Muslim Brotherhood include “a total rejection of all forms of society except the wholly Islamic one… which accepted the sovereign authority of [Allah]…. The leadership of Western man in the human world is coming to an end….”
Moreover, Article 8 of the Hamas charter stipulates that “Jihad [holy war] is the path of Hamas, and death for the sake of Allah is the most exalted wish….” Article 13 states that “There is no solution to the Palestinian problem except Jihad….” Article 31 notes that “The three monotheistic religions – Islam, Christianity and Judaism – can live side by side under the aegis of Islam….”
US benefits from its annual investment in Israel
Israel’s 1967 swift victory over Egypt, Syria and Jordan devastated the pro-USSR and anti-US Egyptian military, which had attempted to overtake the pro-US Arab oil-producing countries, at a time when the US was heavily dependent upon Persian Gulf oil. The Israeli victory denied the USSR a strategic bonanza, and spared the US a national security and economic calamity.
Thus, since 1967, the US-Israel saga has increasingly become a mutually-beneficial, two-way street in the following manner:
1. Israel is the most productive, cost-effective, battle-tested laboratory for the US defense industries and armed forces, as demonstrated by the F-35, F-16 and F-15 combat aircraft – as well as by hundreds of additional US military systems employed by Israel – which were supplied to Israel and accumulated vast combat experience, operationally, maintenance-wise and repair-wise. This unique Israeli combat experience has promoted US military systems throughout the world, advancing US exports.
The Israeli experience/lessons have been constantly shared with the US manufacturers and the US Air Force. It has upgraded the quality of US combat aircraft, thus sparing the US defense industry many years and billions of dollars in research and development; enhancing US competitiveness in global competition; increasing US exports and expanding the US employment-base.
The Israeli battle-tested laboratory has yielded a mega-billion-dollar bonanza to the US defense industries, and enhanced the performance of the US Air Force and other branches of the US military.
Israel’s battle experience has been shared with the US armed forces, such as Special Operation troops on their way to Iraq and Afghanistan, who spend 2-3 weeks in Israel, being trained by Israel’s top experts on neutralizing car-bombs, suicide bombers and the deadly Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).
Furthermore, the Israeli battle experience (wars and counter-terrorism) has been shared with the US, impacting much of the US Army battle-tactic-formulation in Ft. Leavenworth, KS.
2. Israel is the most productive outside-source of military intelligence for the US, which has exceeded the intelligence supplied to the US by all NATO countries combined (e.g., the entire Iranian nuclear archive; battle tactics of potential and actual enemies; advantages and disadvantages of hostile military systems; counter-terrorism; and preempting Middle East flareups). Israel has assisted in foiling anti-US terrorism and attempts to topple pro-US Arab regimes.
According to General George Keegan, a former Chief of US Air Force Intelligence: “I could not have procured the intelligence [received from Israel] with five CIAs….” In order to realistically assess the magnitude of Israel’s contribution to the US intelligence, one should note that the annual budget of the CIA is about $15bn!
3. Israel is a most innovative hub of US commercial high-tech, second only to the US, hosting research and development centers of some 250 US high-tech giants, such as Intel, Microsoft, Amazon, Cisco, Apple, HP, Kodak, Google, Facebook, IBM, AOL, Applied Materials, Johnson & Johnson, etc. These US giants leverage the brain power of Israel – the Startup Nation – in order to expand US production, exports and employment.
4. Israel is a uniquely reliable, effective and democratic outpost of the US in the extremely critical area between Europe, Asia and Africa, the Mediterranean, the Red Sea, the Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf, which extends the strategic reach of the US, with no need for additional US military personnel.
Also, Israel’s posture of deterrence, defense technologies, battle experience, intelligence network and training capabilities play a major role in securing the highly vulnerable pro-US Arab regimes (e.g., Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Morocco), which face existential threats by Iran’s Ayatollahs, the Muslim Brotherhood and ISIS.
As stated by the late General Alexander Haig, a former Supreme Commander of NATO and US Secretary of State: Israel is the largest US aircraft carrier, which does not require a single boot on board, is located in a most strategic area for US military and economic interests, and cannot be sunk. If there were not an Israel in the eastern flank of the Mediterranean, the US would have to dispatch a few more aircraft carriers to the region, in addition to a few more ground divisions, at an annual (manufacturing, deployment, maintenance) cost of $15bn-$20bn.
In conclusion, Israel is a unique military and commercial force-multiplier for the US.
Accordingly, the US makes an annual investment in – rather than extending foreign aid to – Israel, which yields a few hundred percent annual rate-of-return to the American taxpayer.
This column was originally published at The Ettinger Report.
The views expressed in guest columns are not necessarily the views or positions of the CCNS or its members.