U.S.-Israel Security Aid Agreement Prevents Congress from Giving Israel More Money in 2017 and 2018

(Washington Post) Josh Rogin - As part of the new 10-year U.S.-Israel security aid agreement, the Israeli government signed a letter promising not to accept any money given by Congress for 2017 and 2018 above the levels in the new Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations subcommittee that manages the foreign affairs budget, said, "You know the White House pressured them into writing that letter. It is a level of antagonism against Israel that I can't understand." Graham pointed out that Congress regularly increases foreign aid above the levels in MOUs when dealing with other countries. For example, Congress increased foreign aid to Jordan above its $1 billion annual allotment last year in light of that country's refugee crisis. Tamara Cofman Wittes, a Brookings Institution scholar and former Middle East official in the Obama administration, tweeted this week that Congress still has the right to appropriate whatever it wants.

2016-09-15 00:00:00

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