US Representatives Grace Meng (D-NY) and Peter J. Roskam (R-IL) called on a key House Committee to continue funding for US-Israel defense cooperation programs. Last week, US and Israeli officials announced that the David’s Sling air defense system has officially entered into service.
Rep. Meng released the following statement:
“US-Israel missile defense cooperation is critical to the safety and security of Israel, and it helps to support jobs and improve technology and national security here in the United States. Working in a bipartisan manner, Congressman Roskam and I previously helped secure increased aid for these defense cooperation programs, and I am pleased to partner with him again in seeking funding. Israel must have the appropriate resources to combat the continued threats it faces from Iran, Hezbollah, and Hamas. Full funding should be swiftly approved.”
Rep. Roskam, who serves as Co-Chair of the House Republican Israel Caucus, released the following statement:
“Missile defense cooperation between the United States and Israel is tremendously beneficial to both countries. This partnership enhances Israel’s ability to defend its citizens and gives our own Armed Forces access to the latest battle-proven technology. I’m glad to see David’s Sling become operational this week and look forward to more successes from this terrific partnership.”
In a letter to the Chair and Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, the lawmakers urged the panel to robustly support critical cooperative programs for fiscal year 2018, including:
- $92 million for the procurement (coproduction) of the Iron Dome Defense System
- $101.5 million for David’s Sling Weapon System research and development
- $120 million for the procurement of the David’s Sling Weapon System
- $82.3 million for Arrow System Improvement Program research and development
- $85 million for Arrow-3 Weapon System research and development
- $120 million for procurement of the Arrow-3 Weapon System
- Full funding for the upcoming Arrow 3-Upper Tier Flight Test, which will take place in the United States by mid-2018
In sum, the lawmakers requested $600.8 million for cooperative US-Israel missile defense programs, the same amount as appropriated in FY 2017.