The Israeli Aid Request

(Globes) Zeev Klein - Israel officially submitted to the U.S. its request for $10 billion in special economic and military aid [not $14 billion as reported yesterday in Ha'aretz]. The request was flexible and included three possible configurations. In order of Israeli preference, they are: $4 billion in special military aid for the war against terrorism and to prepare for a US attack on Iraq, and $6 billion in U.S. guarantees for commercial bank loans. $3 billion military grant and $7 billion in guarantees. This alternative is considered the most likely to gain approval. $2 billion military grant and $8 billion in guarantees. The Ministry of Finance said that the talks with U.S. National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice "were friendly, and Rice promised that the administration would address the request in the coming weeks." White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said. "Israel is preparing a proposal for assistance...and the United States, with this long-term commitment we have to Israel's security, prosperity, and economic development, is putting together a team to address with the Israelis their situation....We are cognizant of the economic conditions in Israel, and we want to work with Israeli authorities on this issue...of course...subject to congressional approval." (Jerusalem Post) Israel will use the upcoming U.S. military aid to buy three planes to gather signal intelligence (SIGINT). The Air Force will replace the current Hawkeye planes that have been in use for decades with Gulfstream-5 jets built by General Dynamic subsidiary Gulfstream Aerospace. The Israel Aircraft Industries subsidiary Elta Electronics Industries will convert the planes to SIGINT use.

2002-11-27 00:00:00

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