It’s Time For Israel to Go Their Own Way

Then-U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu give joint statements to the press in the prime minister's office in Jerusalem on March 9, 2016. DEBBIE HILL/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES

Israel should reject foreign aid from the United States and go their own way. The era of Israel receiving meaningful support from the United States is over. Joe Biden’s cabinet and advisors are overwhelmingly Jewish, and yet they are transparently anti-Israel and pro-Iran.

Within minutes of Joe Biden being sworn in as the 46th President of the United States, the official US government account for the US Ambassador to Israel was changed to claim that the account belonged to the “U.S. Ambassador to Israel, the West Bank and Gaza.” Of course, the West Bank and Gaza are not countries, and thus there could not be a US Ambassador to such places. 

When Donald Trump was President, Israel had carte blanche to do whatever they wanted to do, whenever they wanted to do it. The United States became the first of many nations to move its embassy to Jerusalem and recognize the city as the official and eternal Capital of the Jewish State. We recognized the long-disputed Golan Heights as Israeli territory. We also expressed support for Israeli settlements deep within the West Bank—something that Israel never even asked us to do. We left the JCPOA and engaged in a maximum pressure campaign of sanctions against Iran. And we killed Iran’s highest ranking military commander, Qasem Soleimani. According to the intel rumor mill, the CIA also collaborated with Israel’s intelligence service to assassinate nuclear scientists on the streets of Iranian cities. 

Those days are over. 

President Biden has committed to re-enter the JCPOA, an agreement which did not give international inspectors access to Iranian military sites, where most experts, and anyone with common sense, believes their illicit nuclear weapons development facilities are located. 

More than 90% of the $3 Billion+ sent to Israel every year is required by law to be funneled right back to American defense contractors. In rejecting US aid and going their own way, Israel could reap tremendous benefits. Take, for instance, Israel’s long held aspiration to purchase B1 Lancer bombers from the United States. The B1 Lancer would give Israel the ability to strike targets deep within Iranian territory with large amounts of ordinance and at supersonic speeds. In other words, the B1 would enable Israel to carry out a conventional first-strike against Iran. A capability which Israel currently does not possess. 

Israeli lobbying to purchase B1 Lancers from the United States have mostly fallen on deaf ears, only briefly garnering public support from the lone Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) in 2015.

In a world where Israel isn’t beholden to the United States because of a few billion dollars in foreign aid, instead of waiting on the B1 Lancers that never arrive, Israel could simply purchase Tupolev Tu-160 bombers from Russia. 

As much as the thinktank class of defense experts insist that the Tu-160 and B1 “fill very different strategic roles”, the reality is that the Tu-160 is a supersonic, long range bomber that can carry a large payload. In fact, the Tu-160 can carry a much larger payload than the B1 and it can do so at much higher speeds. The Tu-160 has a maximum takeoff weight of 606,000lbs, compared to the lesser 477,000lbs of the B1. And the Tu-160 is also significantly faster than the B1, topping out at mach 2.05 (1,380mph) compared with just mach 1.25 (830mph) in the B1. The Tu-160 does all of this while maintaining a 200 mile edge in maximum range and having a much better track record for reliability. 

Indeed, the Tu-160 would fill the role that Israel has been seeking to fill with B1 Lancers, and it would do so admirably and at a much lesser cost. India realized this, and is currently in talks with Russia to purchase the Tu-160 for its own air force in order to counter Chinese capabilities. 

The only reason Israel hasn’t placed an order for Tu-160’s already is resistance from the United States, which uses the billions of dollars in foreign aid money as a lever to stop them from doing so.

Israel fulfilling its strategic objective to acquire a formidable non-nuclear first strike capability against Iran is just one area where Israel stands to benefit by rejecting US aid money and carving their own path in the world instead. 

Israel checked all the boxes. They received the long-promised recognition of Jerusalem, along with recognition of the Golan Heights, F35 fighter jets and so much more. With limited upside remaining in working with the United States, and a looming, serious downside, now would be the perfect time for Prime Minister Netanyahu to inform the Biden Administration that Israel will no longer be accepting big checks, and all the strings that come attached, from the United States. 

About The Author: Jacob Wohl is a registered lobbyist and the host of Man Up with Jacob Wohl on Censored.TV.