News Releases

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Senators Isakson, Perdue Urge Strengthened Security Assistance to Israel

Join letter to President Obama supporting enhanced, long-term security agreement

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., and David Perdue, R-Ga., members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, are urging the Obama administration to support a long-term agreement with Israel to ensure our strongest ally in the Middle East has the resources necessary to defend itself.

 In a letter sent to President Obama, Isakson and Perdue emphasized the need to extend the current agreement between the United States and Israel, called a “Memorandum of Understanding,” that expires in 2018. The senators pointed to “Israel’s dramatically rising defense challenges” as the most pressing reason why time is of the essence.

 The bipartisan letter, which was led by U.S. Senators Chris Coons, D-Del., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and signed by a total of 83 U.S. senators, reads “We stand ready to support a substantially enhanced new long-term agreement to help provide Israel the resources it requires to defend itself and preserve its qualitative military edge.”

 The letter points to the ever-present threats to Israel posed by Iran, the disorder in Syria and radical Islamic terrorist groups including Hezbollah, al-Qaeda, the Islamic State and the Levant, known as ISIL, and other militant Islamist groups.

 “In addition to these immediate threats… given the extraordinary levels of weapons pouring into the Middle East, Israel could quickly find itself on the wrong end of the regional military balance,” the senators continued in their letter. “This problem is compounded by the mounting cost of the new aircraft and other weapons systems that Israel must acquire to keep pace with its neighbors. Moreover, Israel must prepare for the likelihood that Iran will resume its quest for nuclear weapons.”

 The full text of the letter sent on April 21, 2016, is available here.

 Last week, in the wake of the United Nations allowing the Palestinian Authority to join its climate convention, Isakson signed a letter to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry demanding that the United States not send any taxpayer dollars to the United Nations (UN) Framework Convention on Climate Change because doing so would be against U.S. law.

 

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