Why the U.S.-Israel Military Aid Package Matters
By Seth Carus, Nima Gerami, and Chen Kane
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President Barack Obama talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu outside the South Portico following their meetings at the White House Monday, May 18, 2009
Sept. 25, 2016 —
After months of tense and drawn-out negotiations, on September 14 the United States and Israel signed the largest U.S. military aid package given to any country, amounting to $3.8 billion annually. The new aid package reaffirms the United States’ unwavering commitment to the security of Israel. But the culmination of the aid deal, set to come into effect in 2018, also underscores the delicate and increasingly fractured relations between the United States and Israel during the Obama-Netanyahu era. While bilateral security cooperation between the two allies remains strong—and will likely remain so regardless of who is elected U.S. president in November—the last five years highlight a widening rift in U.S. and Israeli strategic objectives at a time of increasing turmoil and uncertainty in the Middle East.
With the effective conclusion of U.S.-Israeli negotiations for the military aid package, the next U.S. administration should take note of the need to restore trust with Israel and find ways to foster a more collective security mindset in the Middle East. READ MORE>>