Yitzhak Benhorin
December 22, 2011 - 1:00am

WASHINGTON – The Unites States has announced it will allocate $235 million for the development of safeguards against rockets and missiles that could be launched towards Israel by Hezbollah and Iran.

A large part of the funds will go towards the development of the David's Sling system, designed to intercept medium- to long-range rockets and cruise missiles, and the Arrow 2 and 3 systems against long-range ballistic missiles.

This unprecedented sum comes at an unexpected time, while the American government is dealing with large budget cuts, including at the Pentagon.

However, Pentagon officials were the ones who requested that Congress approve a $106 million aid budget for Israel's defense systems against missiles, on top of the Iron Dome budget.

Congress chose to nearly double that amount, approving a budget of $235 million for 2012, amounting to $25 million more than in 2011.

This budget, however, is not considered to be part of the American aid to Israel, but rather, goes towards military cooperation between both countries, with each one allocating a similar amount in developing anti-missile systems.

The US' defense assistance to Israel is estimated at over $3 billion for 10 years, beginning in 2007, two-thirds of which end up in the hands of America's military industries.


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