Democrats Approve $18 Billion Arms Sale to ‘Israel’ Including 50 F-15s

Key Democrats and Republicans in the US have approved a significant $18 billion arms sale to Israel, reflecting strong bipartisan support for continued military support to Tel Aviv despite the genocide in the Gaza Strip.

Two key Democratic holdouts, Rep. Gregory W. Meeks and Sen. Ben Cardin, have approved a major arms sale to “Israel”  according to a report by The Washington Post.

The newly approved package would include 50 F-15 fighter jets worth over $18 billion, The Washington Post reported citing three US officials who chose to remain anonymous.

Significantly, the decision has not been previously reported. This underscored Washington’s strong support for “Israel” despite alleged concerns from younger Congress members about using US leverage to “reduce the intensity of the war and allow more humanitarian aid into Gaza.”

In the case of the F-15 and munitions package, the two top Republicans on the committees, Sen. James E. Risch of Idaho and Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas, had signed off on the sale months ago The Washington Post reported.

Regarding the funding, it is important to note that the report stressed that the weaponry, often paid for over many years, is “largely financed by the more than $3.3 billion in US taxpayer funds Washington provides Israel every year.”

Meeks, after months of holding up the sale, emphasized the importance of humanitarian efforts and limiting civilian casualties. Both Meeks and Cardin, who can effectively veto foreign military sales, have now signed off, allowing the State Department to proceed with notifying Congress.

This decision reflects bipartisan support for US military aid to “Israel”, though it faces criticism from activists concerned about the humanitarian impact in the Gaza Strip.

F-15EX to prove essential for long-range attacks

The deal for the 50 US-made F-15 fighter jets has been in the works since April this year and is expected to heavily bolster the Israeli Air Force’s long-range offensive capabilities.

The occupation already owns and operates at least 86 F-15 fighter jets, however, the units that will be acquired are unique, as they maintain the F-15’s air superiority qualities while affording operators an effective option for long-range attacks. 

Historically, the F-15 has been quintessential for achieving Israeli air superiority in the region. The EX version of the fighter jet maintains its air defense qualities while providing a great option for firing large stand-off weapons, such as short-range ballistic missiles. 

The option to haul relatively long-range ballistic missiles and cruise missiles on the F-15EX would largely improve and bolster the occupation’s ability to carry out long-range attacks on enemies, which is in part why the approval of the sale had been halted. 

Currently, the US only produces the EX version of the F-15, which “Israel” has been pursuing since January 2023. 

Related Articles

Back to top button