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Biden pledges $14.3 billion of military aid to Israel. How industry, protesters, and watchdogs see it. - Vox

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  kavika  •  6 months ago  •  34 comments

By:   Jonathan Guyer (Vox)

Biden pledges $14.3 billion of military aid to Israel. How industry, protesters, and watchdogs see it. - Vox
What the US sending Israel weapons "at the speed of war" looks like.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


What the US sending Israel weapons "at the speed of war" looks like.

By Jonathan Guyer@mideastXmidwest Nov 18, 2023, 7:00am EST Activists protest against war in Gaza as Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin testify during a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing about the United States sending aid to Israel and Ukraine on Capitol Hill on October 31, 2023, in Washington, DC. Jabin Botsford/Washington Post via Getty Images Jonathan Guyer covers foreign policy, national security, and global affairs for Vox. From 2019 to 2021, he worked at the American Prospect, where as managing editor he reported on Biden's and Trump's foreign policy teams.

One area where the Biden administration has set itself apart is in sending weapons to partner countries, and now we're getting a more complete picture of what the US is sending Israel in the weeks since October 7.

Since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, the US has ramped up its previously minimal military aid to the country to an unparalleled $46.7 billion. Ukraine towers over the other major recipients in bar charts of US security assistance for 2022 and '23. The US is sending so many munitions there that it has apparently strained American factories and led to a whole-of-government effort to revive military supply chains.

The US is also accelerating arms transfers to Israel in response to Hamas's October 7 attacks that killed 1,200 people and resulted in the kidnapping of more than 200. Last month, President Joe Biden announced from the Oval Office that he would seek "an unprecedented support package for Israel's defense" of $14.3 billion. "We're surging additional military assistance," he added.

But while Ukraine has never been a traditional recipient of heavy military aid, the US's most recent support of the Israeli military builds on a long bipartisan American practice. Israel has received about $3 billion annually, adjusted for inflation, for the last 50 years, and is the largest historical recipient of US security aid. The Obama administration in 2016 announced the biggest security assistance package to the country ever, pledging $38 billion for Israel over the next decade. US support has ensured that Israel maintains its qualitative military edge over neighboring Arab countries by having more advanced weapons systems, something Congress wrote into law in 2008.

Israel would not be able to conduct this war without the US, which over time has provided Israel with about 80 percent of the country's weapons imports. Israel is using them as part of its large-scale military operation that has so far killed over 11,000 Palestinians and destroyed hospitals and civilian infrastructure. While it is the Israeli Defense Forces doing the killing, the extent of US aid has raised serious questions about American culpability. "Providing weapons that knowingly and significantly would contribute to unlawful attacks can make those providing them complicit in war crimes," Human Rights Watch said.

Which weapons, exactly, the US is sending to fill Israel's requests since October 7 has been hitherto kept secret — in contrast to how the US publicizes the weapons it delivers to Ukraine. But Bloomberg this week published a leaked Pentagon document that showed the US has delivered 2,000 Hellfire missiles that can be launched from Apache helicopters, as well as an array of other mortars and ammo, including "36,000 rounds of 30mm cannon ammunition, 1,800 of the requested M141 bunker-buster munitions and at least 3,500 night-vision devices."

This year, military budgets around the world hit all-time highs. Israel in recent years has been growing its arms export business. It also imports significant weapons from the UK, Italy, Canada, and Germany, but 92 percent of what Israel gets comes from the United States. As researcher William Hartung wrote recently in The Nation, "Israel's arsenal, and its arms industry, are by and large made in, and financed by, the USA."

Why Biden's team is so effective at getting weapons to Israel


The Biden administration has a robust understanding of weapons systems and the business behind them. While any mainstream US administration, Republican or Democrat, would likely be rushing weapons orders to Israel, this administration is uniquely qualified to do so, bringing to bear their successes on Ukraine arms transfer and experience advising weapons-makers. In the second year of his presidency, Biden's arms sales overtook President Donald Trump's, who himself had already overseen a big increase.

The House voted in favor of new military assistance to Israel but cut out the Ukraine aid component, so the Senate will likely not pass it. In the meantime, the Biden administration has been efficient and quiet about transfers, using creative tools to jump-start deliveries to Israel that include direct commercial sales from arms-makers (meaning the US isn't financing the purchases but does allow American weapons manufacturers to sell to Israel), governmental financing vehicles that don't require congressional approval, and hurrying up orders that were placed before October. Stockpiles meant for US use are also being diverted to Israel. As a senior Pentagon official put it, "expediting security assistance" to Israel has been task number one.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin is a former board member of Raytheon, the major military contractor that co-produces Iron Dome receptors with the Israeli company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems. RTX, as Raytheon has been renamed, is one of the most significant providers to Israel. Austin and many other senior appointees to the Pentagon bring a depth of experience working for the arms industry. Even if they aren't directly involved in the day-to-day — Austin has had to recuse himself from the Department of Defense's dealings with Raytheon — the heft these appointments bring shows the seriousness with which the Biden administration takes the defense industrial base.

As Austin told the Senate, "We are flowing security assistance to Israel at the speed of war."

Secretary of State Antony Blinken co-founded WestExec Advisors in 2017, which has worked for military contractors, new military-tech startups, and Israeli companies. Blinken, for his part, advised the defense contractor Boeing, according to his financial disclosure. Last month, Boeing rushed the transfer of 1,000 smart bombs and 1,800 GPS-guidance bomb kits to Israel.

Unfinished shells wait to be prepared for painting. The Scranton Army Ammunition Plant held a media day to show what they make. The plant makes a 155mm artillery shell. Aimee Dilger/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Much of the team that worked to get Israel the $38 billion Obama package over 10 years is leading the way. Other key State Department officials include Daniel Shapiro, who also worked for the Israel spyware maker NSO Group when he was out of government. Intelligence leaders, too, bring vast experience. Avril Haines, the director of the Office of National Intelligence, has worked as an adviser to the data-processing powerhouse Palantir, which has been a staunch supporter of Israel and apparently provides advanced tech to the Israeli military.

The foundation of relationships between the defense industries in the US, Israel, and its other partners in the region also helps. When the world's biggest aerospace and defense companies gathered at the Dubai Airshow this week, for example, Israeli defense firms and officials kept a low profile — but the big deals continued. Take the US-Israel-UAE triangle, which benefits each country. Boeing, an American company, signed a $52 billion airliner contract with a UAE carrier. On the sidelines of the fair, business people discussed "the impact of the demand for equipment stemming from the conflicts in Gaza" and "Close U.S.-U.A.E. alignment on the Israel-Gaza conflict," according to the US-UAE Business Council. At the same time, Elbit Systems' Emirati subsidiary is selling $53 million of military tech to the UAE.

The US has promoted the long lists of weapons it is sending to Ukraine, publishing one-pagers and tallies that go into great detail. But as the Intercept's Ken Klippenstein noted, the Biden administration has kept the list of weapons it's sending to Israel secret. The administration has also "sought permission to unilaterally blanket-approve the future sale of military equipment and weapons — like ballistic missiles and artillery ammunition  —  to Israel without notifying Congress," according to the watchdog group Women for Weapons Trade Transparency. That would remove a key mechanism for oversight from lawmakers — and scrutiny from the public.

Who's concerned about arms to Israel?


Many of these weapons are now being used in Gaza, with catastrophic humanitarian results. That has led the United Nations, French President Emmanuel Macron, and a number of international organizations to urge an immediate ceasefire. Human Rights Watch has called for war crimes investigations into the Israeli bombardment of the health care system.

"The emphasis is on damage and not on accuracy," Israeli military spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said last month. That heavy bombardment and death toll prompted the UN's high commissioner for human rights to say Thursday that "the killing of so many civilians cannot be dismissed as collateral damage."

Given this, some activists are protesting US military aid to Israel and are calling for a ceasefire. One group called Palestine Action has been staging actions in the US and the United Kingdom at the facilities of Elbit Systems, an Israeli military contractor. About 150 protesters picketed Raytheon Technologies in El Segundo, California, for its arms trade with Israel.

Josh Paul, a former senior State Department official overseeing arms sales who resigned in protest last month, has been straightforward in saying that Israel is in violation of international law. "It is my opinion that Israel is committing war crimes in its actions in Gaza right now," he said. "And it's not just my opinion. I've actually heard from officials across government, including elected officials at a very senior level, who share that opinion but aren't willing to say it in public."

A shipment of 155mm artillery shells used by the Israeli army is transported on a truck along a highway between Jerusalem and Beersheba in southern Israel on October 14, 2023. Yuri Cortez/AFP via Getty Images

This may be setting up Israel for a collision with the Biden administration.

In February 2022, Biden strengthened the human rights component of US arms transfers. The administration put a new emphasis on human rights in the Conventional Arms Transfer policy that added safeguards for "elevating the importance of protecting civilians." The policy specifically restricted the transfer of weapons that are "more likely than not" to be used in atrocities, including violations of the Geneva Convention or of international humanitarian law.

The Biden administration may be "violating its own conventional arms transfer policy" by sending arms to Israel, as Seth Binder of the Project on Middle East Democracy recently told Jacobin.

But senior Biden officials insist the administration is upholding its commitments. "All of our arms transfers, including arms transfers to Israel, are rooted in the basic proposition that they will be used consistent with [the] law of armed conflict," Jake Sullivan, the national security adviser, said last month. "There is no exception here and no difference here from any of our other arms transfers." The administration regularly conveys to Israel the importance of humanitarian laws, that "innocent civilians must be taken [in]to account for any operation," according to Pentagon spokesperson Sabrina Singh.

Some of the concerns relate specifically to the kinds of weapons the US delivers. The document that Bloomberg obtained showed that the US is sending Israel 57,000 of the 155mm shells that are used in artillery guns. A group of humanitarian aid groups and security experts had sent a letter to the secretary of defense earlier in the week urging the Biden administration not to send these shells to Israel, saying they are "inherently indiscriminate" and "have a high error radius, often landing 25 meters away from the intended target," which would be particularly destructive in a place as densely populated as Gaza.

As arms trade accelerates and scrutiny on Israel's operations heightens, the reason for the strengthening of the arms transfer policy's human rights component seems more relevant than ever. "It is not in the US national interest to engage in arms transfers where we assess that they are likely to be used in human rights violations," Christopher Le Mon, a senior State Department official, said in March. "It does not advance our national interests, it does not advance our national security."


Red Box Rules

Between a rock and a hard place.


 

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Kavika
Professor Principal
1  seeder  Kavika     6 months ago

American is caught between a rock and a hard place on this.

 
 
 
Greg Jones
Professor Participates
2  Greg Jones    6 months ago

Can you elaborate?

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
3  Drinker of the Wry    6 months ago

There are around 17 conflicts (terrorist incursions to civil war) ongoing in Africa today.  Many civilians killed who have neither voted for nor help to harbor the killers.  Yet most of the press and the world turns a blind eye to those killing fields in favor of Gaza.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3    6 months ago
here are around 17 conflicts (terrorist incursions to civil war) ongoing in Africa today.  Many civilians killed who have neither voted for nor help to harbor the killers.  Yet most of the press and the world turns a blind eye to those killing fields in favor of Gaza.

This situation has existed for quite some time and even Ukraine has fallen off the front page.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
3.1.1  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Kavika @3.1    6 months ago

Yes, American outrage at civilian casualties is fickle.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
3.1.2  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.1.1    6 months ago
Yes, American outrage at civilian casualties is fickle.

You're being kind.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
3.1.3  Krishna  replied to  Kavika @3.1    6 months ago
This situation has existed for quite some time

If I'm not mistaken there was a part of the situation that did exist for a long time-- a situation of which many people are not aware. IIRC, there had been a cease fire. And it was effective-- until it wasn't.

The day before Hamas started this recent escalation (by their attack on Oct 7) there was a ceasefire, Then Hamas ended it by attacking Israel.

So even if there were to be yet another ceasefire-- it would be meaningless because while Israel would abide by the ceasefire, Hamas could again attack Israel whenever they felt like it. 

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
3.1.4  Krishna  replied to  Krishna @3.1.3    6 months ago

So even if there were to be yet another ceasefire-- it would be meaningless because while Israel would abide by the ceasefire, Hamas could again attack Israel whenever they felt like it. 

Here's something that explains what happens when there's a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. (Unfortunately it seems only to be on Instagram so some people here won't be able to view it). But its quite clear and easy to understand.

Hamas-Israel ceasefires  

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
3.1.5  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Krishna @3.1.3    6 months ago
"So even if there were to be yet another ceasefire-- it would be meaningless because while Israel would abide by the ceasefire, Hamas could again attack Israel whenever they felt like it."

Which is why Israel has decided that there is no other way to stop the breaking of ceasefires and the attacking of civilians in Israel but to kill every last fucking Hamas militant, leader, officer, member and supporter and not stop the war on them until the last one bites the dust and I damn well don't blame them.  But of course the whole world is demanding a cease fire so Hamas can reorganize, rearm and set booby traps and be able to kill a lot more Israeli soldiers, because, you know, it's those JOOZ!!!

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
3.1.6  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Krishna @3.1.3    6 months ago

Krish, my comment was not about a crease fire but about how so many wars/terrorist/genocide are happening around the world yet they do not make the media headlines, but Gaza does.

Americans are fickle well because.........

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4  Buzz of the Orient    6 months ago

Although the biased report speaks of all the transferred weapons that are used for destroying and killing, little mention is made of those used for defence such as the iron dome and patriot missies.  Although Iron Dome was mentioned in passing, it was not mentioned with the weapons being sent now.  

Why is Israel blamed for contravening International Law and the Law of War when Israel does more to prevent civilian deaths than any army in history, while no mention is made of Hamas using civilians as human shields and hiding themselves among the public by not wearing uniforms and hiding their weapons and most likely their command centres in or under hospitals, mosques, UN facilities, crowded refugee centres and schools and in fact I saw an article with pictures where Hamas actually shot and killed Gazans trying to escape, nor does anyone care to mention who started this war and the vicious inhuman massacre Hamas pulled off.  Everyone is demanding a cease fire so Hamas can regroup, rearm and prepare for the next fight so a greater number of IDF soldiers can be killed, but nobody is demanding that Hamas SURRENDER in order to stop the carnage although Hamas won't because they want to become martyrs and obtain the benefit of deflowering their 72 virgins, notwithstanding their eventual defeat is inevitable. 

Is anyone demanding that Iran and other Arab/Muslim states stop arming Hamas and Hezbollah?  No fucking way, so the terrorists can get all the arms and ammunition they need and nobody give a shit, but Israel.... 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4    6 months ago

It is a report and it is you who thinks it's biased. That said perhaps you should read the report again, it's the US that is being pointed out as possibly violating the law that they helped improve. There are some people who say that Israel is committing war crimes but by sending these weapons the US is also committing war crimes. 

Your second paragraph is at best avoiding what is happening. Iran, Hamas et al have been condemned, and told to lay down their arms and Iran has been pillared by numerous countries.

No one is picking on Israel here, it's a report that could put the US in a difficult position. 

Are you aware of what happened in the Knesset today? Thousands of Israelis whose relatives are hostages demonstrated against the government and demanded to attend a meeting of the Knesset which turned into a near riot. One father whose family is being held hostage made a comment that I think really struck home with the Knesset. 'Quit talking about killing Arabs and talk about saving Jews''.

You have been a critic of the US arms industry and US policy. Are you still so critical that we are supplying Israel with weapons?

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.1  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @4.1    6 months ago

I know that America's Military Industrial Complex and the hundreds of military bases around the world are needed to keep the American economy viable, and I have never criticized its arms policy when it came to Israel.  And as you can see lots of pressure is put on America because it's helping Israel and not strongly demanding a cease fire, but NOBODY is demanding that Hamas surrender because that would stop the war.  I'm sure Hamas will get what it wants which is they will trade each hostage for 100 terrorist prisoners in Israeli jails.  IMO their calculation is quite right, because one Israeli is equal, in fact even better in every way, to 100 Palestinian/Gazan terrorists.

 
 
 
Snuffy
Professor Participates
4.1.2  Snuffy  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.1    6 months ago

I have a question that's not really inline with this seed but it's a question that I think you might have an answer to.  Here in the US we have heard for years about just how good the Mossad is.  They do know that the high-level billionaires who actually call the shots for Hamus are living the good life in Yemen.  Why doesn't the Mossad take them  out?  One would think that removing the head would overall make the snake dumber.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.3  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Snuffy @4.1.2    6 months ago

First of all I think that missing Hamas' intention to massacre Israelis on Oct 7 indicates that they are no longer as adept as they were when they took out the Black September terrorists who murdered the Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics, although obviously they didn't foresee that as well.  But the other reason could be a political one in that Israel is trying to normalize relations with Arab nations and an assassination might set that back.  I don't think the heads of Hamas are in Yemen but are in other nations such as Qatar.  However, now Mossad may just as well give it a try.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1.4  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.3    6 months ago

It was just reported a few days ago that one was living in London.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.5  Krishna  replied to  Snuffy @4.1.2    6 months ago

I have a question that's not really inline with this seed but it's a question that I think you might have an answer to.  Here in the US we have heard for years about just how good the Mossad is.  They do know that the high-level billionaires who actually call the shots for Hamus are living the good life in Yemen.  Why doesn't the Mossad take them  out?  One would think that removing the head would overall make the snake dumber.

Good question. (And a minor point-- I believe they are in one or more oil rich Gulf states not Yemen-- because Yemen is under fire as there's a a continuing war in Yemen between the legitimate government supported by the Saudis and the Houthi rebels supported by Iran).

Part of the problem is that Israel and the Gulf states were moving toward ending the traditional Arab-Israeli hatreds and moving toward peace.  If Israeli agent(s) went there and assassinated Hamas leaders, it would embaress the rulers of these Arab Gulf states (Mainly UAE but I think other countries as well), and lead to tensions with the Israelis. 

P.S: Kavika just mentioned that one was living in London. And the Brits certainly wouldn't be happy is an assassination was carried out in their country.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.6  Krishna  replied to  Kavika @4.1    6 months ago
There are some people who say that Israel is committing war crimes

All wars are crimes.

But there is a double standard. 

And even if one's sympathies were toward Muslim victims-- there are conflicts where many, many innocent Muslims are murdered, uprooted from their homes, etc.

Yet even the Muslims harshly criticizing Israel never mention the horrors being inflicted on the Rohingya. Why?

(Yes, they are Muslims, and yes they are victims of an ongoing genocide.)

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.7  Krishna  replied to  Krishna @4.1.6    6 months ago
Yet even the Muslims harshly criticizing Israel never mention the horrors being inflicted on the Rohingya. Why? (Yes, they are Muslims, and yes they are victims of an ongoing genocide.)

Rohingya genocide  is a series of ongoing persecutions and killings of the Muslim Rohingya people by the military of Myanmar. The genocide has consisted of two phases to date: the first was a military crackdown that occurred from October 2016 to January 2017, and the second has been occurring since August 2017.

 The crisis forced over a million Rohingya to flee to other countries. Most fled to Bangladesh, resulting in the creation of the world's largest refugee camp, [ while others escaped to India, Thailand, Malaysia, and other parts of South and Southeast Asia, where they continue to face persecution

. Many other countries consider these events ethnic cleansing.

WTF?

the world's largest refugee camp

But even if you follow the news stories in the mainstream media-- while we're constantly fed stories about the suffering of the Palestinians (brought about by their own violent actions), most people never even heard of the (Muslim) Rohingyans. 

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.8  Krishna  replied to  Kavika @4.1    6 months ago
You have been a critic of the US arms industry and US policy. Are you still so critical that we are supplying Israel with weapons?

There's also a practical point to sending Israel weapons. While many people oppose this because they are opposed to actions that only help Israel-- the fact is a militarily strong israel is in America's interest.

Why? because we have many of the same enemies. And if a strong Israel exists, that will keep Iran (and some other bad actors in the area) from making trouble. (The cost in dollars in sending them weapons and them doing fighting or even keeping enemies like Iran wary-- is a lot less than having American kids fighting our enemies over there)

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.9  Krishna  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.3    6 months ago
However, now Mossad may just as well give it a try.

I don't think that's a good idea-- for two reasons:

1. I don't think taking out these guys will have any significant impact of Hamas fighters in Gaza.

2. Also eventually Israel's relations with some of these Gulf states (which had been improving up until Hamas recent attack) will improve-- to an amazing degree. This has been on hold since Hamas' recent attack started the current mess-- but the potential for mutually beneficial relations with some of the Gulf states  will eventually continue. An assassination in one of their countries would further delay progress.

 
 
 
Krishna
Professor Expert
4.1.10  Krishna  replied to  Krishna @4.1.5    6 months ago
oil rich Gulf states not Yemen-- because Yemen is under fire as there's a a continuing war in Yemen

Yemen is a very poor country-- and suffering even more now that Iran has been interfering in their affairs. The only positives they have other than a militarily strategic location is Socotra (which is a horse of another color {to coin a phrase})

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.11  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Krishna @4.1.8    6 months ago
"..the fact is a militarily strong Israel is in America's interest."

What American General said that Israel is like America having an aircraft carrier in the Middle East that doesn't need any soldiers?

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1.12  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Krishna @4.1.7    6 months ago
But even if you follow the news stories in the mainstream media-- while we're constantly fed stories about the suffering of the Palestinians (brought about by their own violent actions), most people never even heard of the (Muslim) Rohingyans. 

I have not only heard of them I follow what news is available about the situation there. Currently, there are now two indigenous groups that are armed and fighting the military there and some of the atrocities were committed by the ''peaceful'' Buddhists.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1.13  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Krishna @4.1.8    6 months ago
You have been a critic of the US arms industry and US policy. Are you still so critical that we are supplying Israel with weapons?

That comment was made to point out Buzz's hypocrisy on the subject. Ukraine, bad, Israel, good.

There's also a practical point to sending Israel weapons. While many people oppose this because they are opposed to actions that only help Israel-- the fact is a militarily strong israel is in America's interest.

I fully understand the reason the US supports Israel, that was not my point at all.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.14  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Krishna @4.1.7    6 months ago

I know I'd heard the name but I never knew anything about them.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.15  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @4.1.13    6 months ago

Yes I'm a hypocrite because my mother was born in Kiev (as it was then spelled) and my father was born in Cherikov on the border between Russia and White Russia.  I have the blood of both sides running running through my veins and arteries and family in both places and so my heart belongs to both.  I cringe at the atrocities but I can do nothing about it.  I've said before that I do not take sides in that issue, but I know that America constantly pumping more weapons to Ukraine INCRAMENTALLY does no more than keep a war going that will last forever and kill more and more people every day.

With me, for a lot of reasons, I feel that Israel has NO CHOICE but to defend itself from the nations surrounding it whose primary desire is to wipe it from the face of the Earth.  Israel is important to America, and so I assume you yourself do not regret that America supports the defence of Israel (if not its present government, upon which I agree with you).

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1.16  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.15    6 months ago
I cringe at the atrocities but I can do nothing about it.  I've said before that I do not take sides in that issue, but I know that America constantly pumping more weapons to Ukraine INCRAMENTALLY does no more than keep a war going that will last forever and kill more and more people every day.

The atrocities are being committed by the Russians, Buzz. They invaded Ukraine who decided to fight back for their freedom and independence. Having parents from both sides does not, IMO allow the violation of international law, nor the moral aspect to say I can't pick a side, your parent isn't the Russian government and is not responsible for the horrors that they are inflicting on Ukraine. Russian is in my opinion nothing but larger Hamas. 

As for the weapons being supplied to Ukraine by the US and other countries extending the war, if they did not get the weapons they would be living under a tyrannical power-mad leader and would have no freedoms, would you prefer that they live as slaves, or have a fighting chance to be a free country.

With me, for a lot of reasons, I feel that Israel has NO CHOICE but to defend itself from the nations surrounding it whose primary desire is to wipe it from the face of the Earth.  Israel is important to America, and so I assume you yourself do not regret that America supports the defence of Israel (if not its present government, upon which I agree with you).

Russia is doing the same thing that Hamas is doing, they are trying to wipe Ukraine from the face of the earth and this is not new for Russia they have been doing it for hundreds of years.

There is no difference in what Russia is doing to Ukraine then what Hamas is trying to do to Israel.

I have made myself very clear on many occasions that I support Israel right to defend itself and attacking Hamas is certainly part of that support. 

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.17  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @4.1.16    6 months ago

Don't you think I want that war to end, just as I want the war with Gaza to end and the wars in Africa and everywhere to end so there will be peace on our planet and the biggest war we will all be fighting by 'cooperating for win-win' to benefit the whole world as said by America's "greatest enemy" while Biden, speaking for America, only uses the word "competing" which means that only the winner wins  from now on?  Is America and Europe so incapable of stopping Russia when this war is bound to last for years and there will continue to be death and destruction?  I thought America was invincible militarily.  Why does America only provide just enough to keep it going but not winning?

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
4.1.18  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.17    6 months ago

I think that the US has provided around $45B so far to the Ukraine.  Besides politics, we are constrained by how much and how fast we can train the Ukraines in the use of our systems.  Also, some equipment and ammunition takes time to manufacture, suppliers can only ramp up so fast and we don’t want our reserves to get too low.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
4.1.19  seeder  Kavika   replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4.1.17    6 months ago

I would think that most everyone wants wars to end forever but that is not the reality, the history of the world is one of war, not peace. So to that end it is best ''be prepared''.

Buzz what Xi says and what China does in reality are two different things and competing doesn't mean that only one side wins.

The US is quite capable of defeating Russia and probably even without the US, NATO could as well. There are multiple reasons that as you say piece meal weapons many other countries are also sending weapons and Ukrainians have to be trained and have 5, 6,  7 types of tanks take a hell of a lot of training maintenance and logistics. In fact I'm amazed that Ukraine is doing as well as it is with the huge amount of different types/makes/styles of weapons. In addition to that the Ukraine are adapting weapons to different systems and inventing and producing their own. Remember, this war started in 2014, not a year and half ago.

The amount of money and weapons the US is sending to Israel is in a way doing the same as it is doing in Ukraine.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
4.1.20  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @4.1.19    6 months ago

Maybe Xi means something different when he uses the word cooperation, but then Biden also means confrontation and containment when he says competition, and there are lots of examples of that I don't need to go into to elaborate. 

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
6  seeder  Kavika     6 months ago
I have never criticized its arms policy when it came to Israel.  

So it's OK to supply Israel with arms but no one else? That is what you are saying.

And as you can see lots of pressure is put on America because it's helping Israel and not strongly demanding a cease fire,

At this time that is true, but yesterday the administration is setting up penalties for the ''settlers'' in the West Bank that are forcing and in some cases killing Palestinians and Bedouins. What Israel is doing and has been doing in the West Bank will hurt them a lot more than it will help them.

I don't know what will happen with hostages or much else in this war. It's a mess and it could be a bigger mess in a short time. 

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
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6.1  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Kavika @6    6 months ago

I don't disagree with your feeling about the Palestinians and Bedouins in the West Bank.  It is the ultra-Orthodox doing it, and I have many times indicated how much I disrespect and despise them.

Anyway I'll be back a little later.  Now I'm going out to play ping-pong with my wife.

 
 

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