The White House is asking Congress to approve $205 million to help Israel build a new short-range rocket defense system, Obama administration officials confirmed Friday.
Called the Iron Dome, the security system "addresses Israelis' worries about errant rockets being fired into their homes" and is designed to intercept incoming rockets fired from Lebanon and Gaza, a senior administration official said.
White House spokesman Tommy Vietor explained the administration's rationale, saying, "The president recognizes the threat missiles and rockets fired by Hamas and Hezbollah pose to Israelis, and has therefore decided to seek funding from Congress to support the production of Israel's short-range rocket defense system called Iron Dome."
Two senior administration officials said the $205 million would be in addition to the $3 billion the United States spends each year to promote Israel's defense.
"As the president has repeatedly said," Vietor added, "our commitment to Israel's security is unshakable, and our defense relationship is stronger than ever. The United States and our ally Israel share many of the same security challenges, from combating terrorism to confronting the threat posed by Iran's nuclear-weapons program."
One senior administration official said Michele Flournoy, U.S. undersecretary of defense for policy, called Israel Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Wednesday to alert Israeli officials about the administration's new rocket funding.
That official said a U.S. team went to Israel last fall to see work on the Iron Dome system, and came away with the assessment that it was "a system that made sense."
THIS IS GOOD.
- BUT REMEMBER: IRON DOME IS A DEFENSE-SYSTEM MEANT TO REACT TO ENEMY ATTACKS.
- THEREFORE, BY ITS NATURE, IT IS NOT PROACTIVE; IT IS REACTIVE: IT'S USEFUL ONLY AFTER AN ATTACK HAD BEGUN.
- IT'S A "FIRST RESPONDER".
IT WOULD BE BETTER IF OUR POLICIES WERE MORE FORWARD LEANING: IF WE SOUGHT TO DESTROY THOSE WHO WOULD ATTACK ISRAEL, RATHER THAN SEEK WAYS TO MINIMIZE SUCH ATTACKS.
- RELYING ON A GOOD RESPONSE AFTER AN ATTACK IS, SADLY, THE PRIMARY MODE FOR OBAMA AND THE LEFT.
- OBAMA'S ANTI-TERROR STRATEGY SEEMS TO BE TO RELY ON BAD-BOMB-MAKING ABILITIES OF THE ENEMY.
- THIS WILL NOT ALWAYS WORK.
- AND ONE SUCCESSFUL WMD ATTACK - IN THE USA OR ISRAEL - WILL MAKE "FIRST RESPONDERS" MEANINGLESS.
THEREFORE, IN ADDITION TO AIDING ISRAEL IN BUILDING AND DEPLOYING "IRON DOME", WE SHOULD BE AGGRESSIVELY TRYING TO ENFORCE UNSCR #1559,
AND ISOLATING ISLAMO-TERRORISTS EVERYWHERE.
- THE BEST DEFENSE IS A STRONG OFFENSE.
- AFTER 9/11, BUSH KEPT US SAFE.
- OBAMA HASN'T - AND THE WORST IS YET TO COME.