The US House of Representative Appropriation Committee have introduced a bill to provide $1 billion to Israel on Wednesday for the up-gradation of its Iron Dome missile-defence system, a day after the funding was abruptly pulled from a government funding package.
In a statement, Rosa DeLauro, who introduced the bill, said, “The United States’ commitment to the security of our friend and ally Israel is ironclad. Replenishing interceptors used to protect Israel from attacks is our legal and moral responsibility.”
“While this funding would ordinarily be included in a year-end spending package, we are advancing this legislation now to demonstrate Congress’s bipartisan commitment to Israel’s security as part of a Middle East with lasting peace.” He added.
Some of the Democrats of the House had objected to the provision and said they would vote against the broad spending bill. This threatened its passage because Republicans were lined up against the plan to fund the federal government through Dec. 3 and raise the nation’s borrowing limit.
The removal led Republicans to label Democrats as anti-Israel, despite a long tradition in the US Congress of strong support from both parties for the Jewish state, to which Washington sends billions of dollars in aid every year.
According to a Congressional Research Service report last year, the United States has already provided more than $1.6 billion for Israel to develop and build the Iron Dome system.
Some liberal Democrats have voiced concerns this year about U.S.-Israel policy, citing among other things the many Palestinian casualties as Israel responded to Hamas rocket attacks in May. Israel said most of the 4,350 rockets fired from Gaza during the conflict were blown out of the sky by Iron Dome interceptors.
The bill introduced by DeLauro on Wednesday will provide $1 billion to replace missile interceptors used during the conflict.