Libmonster ID: UK-1458

US ROLE IN ENSURING ISRAEL'S MILITARY SUPERIORITY IN THE MIDDLE EAST

DMITRY DEGTEREV

Candidate of Economic Sciences

E. A. STEPKIN

MGIMO (U) of the Russian Foreign Ministry

USA Keywords:Israelconcept of "Qualitative military superiority"Middle Eastmilitary assistance

The motivations that encourage donor countries to provide assistance to their foreign partners are very diverse: for example, creating a security belt along the perimeter of national borders, deterring a global competitor, or accessing natural resources.1 In the current situation in the world, and especially in the Middle East, the US-Israeli alliance is of particular interest.

Today, perhaps, there is no closer political and strategic alliance than the US-Israel partnership. US Assistant Secretary of State for Political and Military Affairs E. Shapiro said of him:"...Today, with budget constraints more limited than ever, some are asking why we should continue to provide aid to Israel... To such skepticism, I can answer directly - we do not support Israel because of long-standing, historically established ties. We support Israel because it is our national interest to do so."2

No less eloquent than Shapiro's statement is the figures: since 1948, the United States has provided $115 billion to Israel in one form or another. 3 Today, Israel receives 60% of the total volume of all US military assistance programs to foreign countries; up to 22% of the Jewish state's military budget is formed at the expense of the United States; it is the second largest state in the world. the largest recipient of U.S. international aid (after Afghanistan).

THE US TAKES THE PLACE OF FRANCE

However, the US has not always been Israel's biggest donor. There are two stages in U.S.-Israeli relations: from 1948 to 1970, there was a period of low aid volumes, and from 1971, a period of high aid volumes began.

For the first two decades after the establishment of the State of Israel, its relations with Washington were formal. This is evidenced by economic indicators: in 1949, the United States provided the first loan of $100 million, and the size of annual loans varied dramatically: from a minimum of $35.1 million in 1951 to a maximum of $160.3 million in 1969.4

Assistance was provided in the form of interest-free grants, as well as loans issued at a certain interest rate. At the same time, funding was provided in three areas: military aid, economic aid and food aid.

The nature of relations, in our opinion, was determined by the geopolitical balance of power at that time. The main exporter of food and weapons to Israel at that time was France. From 1954 to 1962, it waged a grueling war against Algeria, which sought independence. The main co-

page 19

Table 1

American aid to Israel in 1971-1996 ($ million)

Year

Total

Military assistance

Economic assistance

Food aid

Grants

Loans

Grants

Loans

Grants

Loans

1971

634,3

545,0

 

 

 

55,5

0,3

1972

430,9

300,0

 

 

50,0

53,8

0,4

1973

492,8

307,5

 

 

50,0

59,4

0,4

1974

2621,3

982,7

1500,0

 

50,0

-

1,5

1975

778,0

200,0

100,0

 

344,5

8,6

-

1976

2337,7

750,0

750,0

225,0

475,0

14,4

-

1977

1762,5

500,0

500,0

245,0

490,0

7,0

-

1978

1822,6

500,0

500,0

260,0

525,0

6,8

-

1979

4888,0

2700,0

1300,0

260,0

525,0

5,1

-

1980

2121,0

500,0

500,0

260,0

525,0

1,0

-

1981

2413,4

900,0

500,0

-

764,0

-

-

1982

2250,5

850,0

550,0

-

806,0

-

-

1983

2505,6

950,0

750,0

-

785,0

-

-

1984

2631,6

850,0

850,0

-

910,0

-

-

1985

3376,7

-

1400,0

-

1950,0

-

-

1986

3663,5

-

1722,6

-

1898,4

-

-

1987

3040,2

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1988

3043,4

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1989

3045,6

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1990

3034,9

-

1792,3

-

1194,8

-

-

1991

3712,3

-

1800,0

-

1850,0

-

-

1992

3100,0

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1993

3103,4

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1994

3097,2

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1995

3102,4

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

1996

3144,0

-

1800,0

-

1200,0

-

-

Total (1946-1996)

68030,9

11212,5

29014,9

1516,5

23122,4

588,5

94,1



Источник: Sharp J. U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel // Congressional Research Service, December 2009. CRS Report, RL33222, p. 31 - 32 - http://fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/134987.pdf

Algeria's ally in this struggle was Nasserist Egypt, where the slogans of pan-Arabism reached the peak of their popularity. Therefore, France has decided to support Egypt's neighbor, Israel, by playing on the Arab-Israeli contradictions in every possible way and diverting Egypt's attention and strength to maintain military parity with the young Jewish state.5 Relations between France and Israel were further strengthened after the Suez crisis of 1956-1957, when the joint actions of France, Israel and Great Britain caused a more than lukewarm reaction in Washington.

In the 1960s, Charles de Gaulle came to power in France and decided to "reset" Franco-Arab relations. This included meeting Algerian demands for independence and strengthening relations with other Arab countries. The" victim " of this policy was the close Franco-Israeli cooperation.

Israel's victory in the 1967 Six-day war with Egypt demonstrated that the Jewish State has the ambition and potential to become a strong regional player. Moreover, the Middle East region was increasingly turning into one of the main arenas of confrontation between the United States and the USSR. This situation convinced the US government of the need for co-operation-

page 20

cooperation with the Jewish statemb. In 1968, the Johnson administration approved the sale of a batch of state-of-the-art F-4 Phantom aircraft to Israel, which was the first sign of warming relations.7

The second phase began with a $545 million grant to Israel in 1971 for the purchase of American weapons.8 Since then, a certain amount has been reserved annually in the US budget for various types of assistance to Israel. American financial support is being transformed: food aid is gradually disappearing, as part of economic assistance, instead of financing individual projects, the United States begins to focus on Israel's purchase of American goods and introduces the Commodity Import Program (CIP) in 1972. In 1979, the CIP program was replaced with unconnected loans that were beneficial to Israelis, i.e., the most profitable loans for the Israeli economy. Israel could spend the allocated amount for any purpose.

In 1971-1973, the volume of American aid to Israel was already about $ 0.5 billion, and since the mid-1970s, it has exceeded the $1 billion mark, with 2/3 already accounted for military assistance (see Table 1).

In 1979, the Camp David Accords were concluded, and U.S. aid to Israel continued to increase, exceeding $3 billion in 1985.

THE CONCEPT OF "QUALITATIVE MILITARY SUPERIORITY"

The economic component of U.S. aid to Israel declined steadily from the mid-1990s until it was finally removed from the aid mix in 2008 (see Table 2). Currently, the bulk of funding comes from military assistance programs.

Some of the weapons and military equipment the United States transfers to Israel free of charge as part of the Program for the transfer of excess military equipment (Excess Defense Articles). This program allows the United States to dispose of used equipment after the end of the Cold War, the disposal and further use of which in the United States is associated with high costs.9 Under this program, Israel is the largest recipient: from 2001 to 2011. It received more than $330 million worth of weapons and military equipment.10

What is the purpose of the US arming Israel over the past 40 years? The official US doctrine uses the term "Qualitative military edge" (QME 11), which refers to the minimum sustained military superiority of Israel over neighboring Arab countries in the Middle East.

In practice, it looks like this: Israel annually receives about $3 billion in US military aid, Egypt - $1.3 billion, Jordan - $0.3 billion 12. At the same time, the volume of US arms and military equipment supplies to Trans-European countries is also taken into account.-


* The Camp David Accords are an Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty signed in Washington in 1979 by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. A preliminary agreement to sign the treaty was concluded in 1978 at the Camp David summit (the country residence of the US President). Under the Camp David Accords, Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt, "recognized the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people," ended the war between the two states, and established diplomatic relations.

page 21

Table 2

U.S. aid to Israel in 1949-2013 ($ )

Year

Total

Military forfeits

Economy grants

Migration grants

Schools and hospitals

Other programs

1949 - 1996

68030,9

29014,9

23122,4

868,9

121,4

14903,3

1997

3132,1

1800,0

1200,0

80,0

2,1

50,0

1998

3080,0

1800,0

1200,0

80,0

-

-

1999

3010,0

1860,0

1080,0

70,0

-

-

2000

4131,85

3120,0

949,1

60,0

2,75

-

2001

2876,05

1975,6

838,2

60,0

2,25

-

2002

2850,65

2040,0

720,0

60,0

2,65

28,0

2003

3745,15

3086,4

596,1

59,6

3,05

-

2004

2687,25

2147,3

477,2

49,7

3,15

9,9

2005

2612,15

2202,2

357,0

50,0

2,95

-

2006

2534,5

2257,0

237,0

40,0

-

0,5

2007

2503,15

2340,0

120,0

40,0

2,95

0,2

2008

2423,9

2380,0

-

40,0

3,90

-

2009

2583,9

2550,0

-

40,0

3,90

-

2010

2803,8

2775,0

-

30,0

3,80

-

2011

3029,22

3000,0

-

25,0

4,225

-

2012

3095,0

3075,0

-

20,0

-

-

2013 (request)

3115,0

3100,0

-

15,0

-

-

Total

115129,57

67423,4

30897,0

1658,2

159,075

14991,9



Источник: Sharp J. U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel // Congressional Research Service, March 2012. CRS Report, RL33222, p. 30 - http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/mideast/RL33222.pdf

the Gulf of Sydney. Maintaining such a dynamic balance allows us to avoid disrupting the regional balance of power, as well as" tie " the countries of the region to the United States. If one of the countries (Israel or Arab countries) violates the truce with its neighbors and loses the favor of the United States, while others maintain good relations with the United States, then in the next fiscal year the " obedient "country receives a new tranche of military aid and upgrades its weapons, and the "disobedient" country remains with outdated ones. weapons. According to some experts, it is this financial structure that is the foundation of peace in the Middle East, and not the Camp David Accords of 1979, as such.13

In fact, it is advantageous for the United States to support all parties to the conflict in the Middle East (Israel and Arab countries) in their confidence that American military assistance will last forever. It is no coincidence, for example, that in 2007 the US and Israeli governments signed a 10-Year Military Aid Agreement, which regulates relations at the current stage. It is a $30 billion aid package adopted by the Bush administration. 14 The agreement provides for an increase in annual aid from $2.55 billion in 2009 to $3.1 billion in 2013 (see Table 2). Israel purchases mainly precision-guided weapons and fighter jets from the United States15.

"IRON DOME "AND"DAVID'S SLING"

It is noteworthy that Israel can spend 26.3% of its aid on the purchase of weapons of its own production.16 Such privileges are no longer available to any of the countries that cooperate with the United States17. It seems that the presence of its own R & D and production of weapons and military equipment is a kind of guarantee for the existence of Israel as a state. It would be shortsighted to limit the purchase and receipt of foreign military equipment. This is most clearly seen in the example of US assistance to the creation of Israel's own missile defense system (see Table 3).

page 22

Table 3

U.S. aid for Israel's development of missile defense systems (2006-2012, $ million)

System Type/Year

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

Short range ("David's Sling")

10,0

20,4

37,0

72,895

80,092

84,722

110,525

Medium range of the Arrow type (Arrow-2)

122,866

117,494

98,572

74,342

72,306

66,427

58,955

High-altitude missile defense system (Arrow-3)

-

-

20,0

30,0

50,036

58,966

66,220

Short range (Iron Dome)

-

-

-

-

-

205,0

-

Total

132,866

137,894

155,572

177,237

202,434

415,115

235,700



Источник: Sharp J. U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel.., March 2012, p. 15.

Israel not only buys short-range tactical missile defense systems " Hawk "(MIM-23 HAWK) and MANPADS "Patriot". With the financial support of the United States, the company "Rafael Advanced Defense Systems"18 and its own short-range missile defense system "Iron Dome"were developed entirely in Israel. The system was put into service and successfully performed during Operation Pillar of Cloud (November 2012), when it was used to intercept 421 rockets from the Gaza Strip. Israel plans to export the system to South Korea, Singapore and India.

The United States is increasing its funding (see table). 3) development of small-and medium-range missile defense system "David's Sling". The system is created by the already mentioned Israeli company "Rafael Advanced Defense Systems" together with the American "Raytheon"19.

Finally, in cooperation with the American corporation "Boeing", Israel is implementing a project to develop medium-and long-range missile defense systems "Arrow "(modifications 2 and 3). The overall management of the project is carried out by the Ministry of Defense of Israel together with the US Missile Defense Agency.

There are a number of reservations regarding Israel's use of US military aid. For example, it cannot be used in the occupied territories. The United States strictly suppresses any attempts to re-export its military aid to third countries, and this, in principle, is one of the most sensitive problems in US - Israeli cooperation. The United States, in fact, froze the planned Sino-Israeli and Russian-Israeli partnership in the military sphere 20. The deal for India to purchase Arrow missile defense systems from Tel Aviv was also blocked due to the fact that it uses American developments 21.

To control re-exports, a bilateral agreement was signed in 2005, implying consultations between Israel and the United States in the event of possible Israeli supplies of "sensitive weapons" to third countries. For its part, the Jewish State has set up its own agency to monitor arms exports.

ASSISTANCE TO REPATRIATES, SCHOOLS AND HOSPITALS

In addition to US military aid programs, there are other types of assistance, including assistance to migrants and refugees, schools and hospitals, and loan guarantees.

The Migration & Refugee Assistance Program is a mechanism to support the process of" repatriating " Jews to their historical homeland. It was launched in 1973 and was intended to help the resettlement of Jews from the USSR and the Warsaw Pact countries to Israel. However, by 1985, it was already just "immigrants to Israel", for example, Jews (Falash) from Ethiopia. The amount of aid under this program is decreasing: in 2004 - $60 million, in 2012-only $20 million.22

The American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (ASHA) program and the U.S.-Israeli Scientific & Business Cooperation Program (U.S.-Israeli Scientific & Business Cooperation) support the two countries ' scientific ties and promote American values and ideals abroad. ASHA funding has a slight upward trend, from $2.75 million in 2000 and $4.2 million in 2011.23

The Loan Guarantees program is a so-called "strategic reserve", i.e. the amount of money that will be lost in the event of force majeure-

page 23

Table 4

US loan guarantees to Israel (2003-2011, $ m)

Year

Scope of assistance,

selected area

To Israel

Are they performed

US requirements for

economic

conversions

Deductions for

construction of settlements

Volume used by Israel

Volume

available for Israel

guarantees

2003

3000,0

Yes

289,5

1600,0

1110,5

2004

3000,0

Yes

-

2500,0

1610,5

2005

1000,0

Yes

795,8

-

1814,7

2006

333,0

The conditions cannot be met due to the war in Lebanon

 

 

2148,0

2007

333,0

Yes

-

-

2481,4

2008

333,0

 

-

-

2814,7

2009

333,0

The conditions cannot be met due to the global economic crisis

 

 

3148,0

2010

333,0

-

-

-

3481,0

2011

333,0

-

-

-

3814,0



Source: Sharp J.... March 2012, p. 23.

Under certain circumstances, it can always be guaranteed to borrow at a low interest rate. And although the Israeli government says that it has not resorted to these funds for many years (see Table. 4), such guarantees from the United States are very beneficial for the investment climate in Israel. Foreign investors are not afraid to invest in the country, because they know that in case of unforeseen difficulties, Americans will come to the rescue.

AID AS AN OBJECT OF MUTUAL CRITICISM

U.S.-Israeli aid programs in their current form have many critics. And while Americans criticize the excessive spending that they believe is being done by the US government, 24 Israelis criticize American aid for other reasons.

First, Israel is becoming overly dependent on the United States and may experience internal political upheaval if aid flows are sharply curtailed.

Secondly, all American aid is subject to a number of restrictions and is related in character25 (purchase of only American equipment; part of the aid must be spent in the United States and used to create jobs for Americans; US control over re-exports to third countries).

Critics argue that much of what Israel receives from America in aid can be purchased from other suppliers at much lower prices. The most striking example of this is the purchase of military uniforms made in the United States, the purchase of fuel for aircraft, as well as dry rations. All this, according to Israeli experts, could have been purchased in Israel for half the price of 26. However, this is a traditional criticism of related aid, where the value of contracts is usually inflated by 15 to 30%.

Finally, the Israeli military-industrial complex is focused exclusively on exports (Israel ranks 8th in the world in terms of arms exports), as American goods "push" Israeli weapons and military equipment out of the local market.

PROSPECTS FOR ASSISTANCE

Washington is not faced with the question of whether to help Israel in the difficult, unpredictable conditions that have developed today in the world economy and the Middle East region. Opinion polls also show that the American people support the US government: 63% of Americans support Israel in the Arab-Israeli confrontation. At the same time, 59% of Americans approved of reducing American aid abroad (including to Israel). By-

page 24

this raises the question for the United States: what should we give money for?

As of March 2013, US budget cuts due to the" fiscal cliff " will lead to a reduction of $150 million in military aid to Israel. However, the Pentagon emphasizes that priority joint projects, primarily in the field of missile defense, will not be affected, 28 and $600 million will be allocated for the development of the Iron Dome missile defense system in the next two years, despite the sequestration of the US budget.

During the visit to Israel in March 2013 of the US President B. President Obama discussed the further development of bilateral cooperation in the military sphere, including the prospects for concluding another ten-year agreement on military assistance for the period from 2017 to 2027. Analysts draw attention to the rather early start of negotiations on extending military cooperation (4 years before the expiration of the previous agreement).29. It is believed that in this way B. Obama is trying to emphasize the immutability of the American course of support for the State of Israel.

* * *

The close relationship between the United States and Israel is based on common strategic goals and objectives in the Middle East region. Israel sees the United States as a guarantor of its economic stability and military security, while the United States benefits from Israel as a political and military base, as well as as one of the main buyers of American military products. In addition, do not forget about the presence of the most powerful Jewish lobby in America.

There are difficulties and contradictions in bilateral US-Israeli relations, as the United States is forced to maneuver in the international arena and maintain relations with its Arab partners. However, the nature of the US - Israel bilateral relationship is consistently stable.


1 For more information, see: Degterev D. A. Assistance to international development as a tool for promoting foreign policy and foreign Economic interests. Vestnik MGIMO, 2012, No. 2, pp. 51-55.

Dagoni R. 2 US and Israel to conduct joint military exercises // Globes [online], Israel Business News, November 6, 2011 -http://www.globes.co.il/serveen/globes/docview.asp9did-1000695184& fid=1725

Sharp J. 3 U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel // Congressional Research Service, March 2012. CRS Report, RL33222, p. 26 - http://www.fas.org/ sgp/crs/mideast/RL33222.pdf

4 Ibidem.

Cristol J. 5 When did the U.S. and Israel become allies? (Hint: Trick Question) // History News Network. 9 July, 2002 - http://hnn.us/ articles/751.html

Sharp J. 6 Op. cit.

7 Ibidem.

Sharp J. 8 Op. cit. //... December 2009.., p. 24 - http://fpc.state.gov/ documents/organization/ 134987.pdf

Shakirov A. R. 9 USA: official development assistance / / MEi-MO 2012, No. 3, p. 47.

Sharp J. 10 See ch. 8, p. 27.

Shapiro A J. 11 Ensuring Israel's Qualitative Military Edge. Remarks to The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. November 4, 2011 -http://www.state.gOv/t/pm/rls/rm/176684.htm

12 Ibidem.

Arena Ph., Pechenkina A. 13 External Subsidies and Lasting Peace. Working Paper. April 4, 2012 - http://filarena.weebly.com/uploads/ 7/3/9/3/7393967/exsub.pdf

14 Ibidem.

15 For more information, see: Podberezkin A. I. Evraziyskaya EKR: rol ' strategicheskikh neyadernykh vooruzhenii [Eurasian East Kazakhstan Region: the Role of Strategic Non-Nuclear Weapons]. 2013, No. 1, pp. 29-37.

Bard M. 16 U.S. Aid to Israel // Jewish Virtual Library. Updated January 2012 - http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/US-Israel/foreign _aid.html

Sharp J. 17 Cm. ch. 8, p. 27.

Oznobishchev S., Topychkanov P. 18 Development of "regional" missile potentials and missile defense systems. 2012, N 12, p. 29.

19 Ibidem.

Zanotti J. 20 Israel: Background and U.S. Relations. CRS Issue Brief for Congress. April 26, 2005. IB85066 - http://www.fas.org/sgp/ crs/mideast/RL33476.pdf

Oznobishchev S., Topychkanov P. 21 Decree. soch., p. 31.

Sharp J.... 22 March 2012, p. 20.

23 Ibidem.

24 Sen. Paul calls for cutting U.S. aid to Israel // Fox News. January 28, 2011 - http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/01/28/sen-paul-calls-cutting-aid-israel/

25 For more information, see: Degterev D. A. Assistance to International Development: evolution of International Legal regimes and effectiveness of External assistance. Moscow, Lenand, 2011.

Shchustef B. 26 Korystnoe beskorystye [Self-serving disinterestedness]. N 16 (275), 31.07.2001 - http://www.vestnik.com/issues/2001/0731/win/shustef. htm

Zanotti J. 27 Op. cit.

Yanushevsky R., Efimova M. 28 Israel will not count the American millions / / Kommersant. N 45/П (5076), 18.03.2013 -http://www.kommersant.ru/doc/2148852

Opall-Rome В. 29 U.S., Israel to negotiate military aid extension. Obama doubles down on bid for Mideast peace // Defense News. March 24, 2013 - http://www.defensenews.com/article/20130324/DEFR EG02/303240005/U-S-Israel-Negotiate-Military-Aid-Extension/


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