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JINSA: US must provide Israel with military capabilities against Iran

CM 14/10/2021

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As negotiations regarding Iran’s nuclear program remain at a standstill, the United States should provide Israel with the military capabilities needed to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear state, a report by the Jewish Institute for National Security of America (JINSA) said.
According to JINSA, a hawkish pro-Israel think tank and lobbying group whose members include former high-ranking military and security officials, three successive US administrations have confronted Iran’s nuclear and regional aggressions with only economic pressure.
But, to prevent Iran from continuing its project and becoming a nuclear state, Washington must do more, including “developing clear and forceful additions” to diplomacy with Tehran.
“A more assertive and concerted approach that fully enforces existing sanctions, and more importantly enhances military readiness, offers by far the best prospects for realizing the Biden administration’s goal of “putting Iran in a box” to reduce America’s exposure in the Middle East and constrain Tehran’s destabilizing behaviors,” the report read.
Washington, which needs to take its own range of actions including updating contingency planning to neutralize Iran’s nuclear facilities and defend US and allied assets against Iranian-led missile and drone threats.
It must also enhance regional posture and deploying strategic bomber and massive ordnance penetrators (bunker busters) to the Indian Ocean, boost US naval presence in Middle Eastern waters, retaliate against Iranian aggression both on land and at sea.

 Prime Minister Naftali Bennett meeting with the Jewish Institute for National Security (JINSA) delegation, October 3, 2021. (credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO) Prime Minister Naftali Bennett meeting with the Jewish Institute for National Security (JINSA) delegation, October 3, 2021. (credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO)

The United States must also strengthen Israel’s ability to act against Iran, the report stressed.
To do so, Washington should provide Israel with “adequate” stockpiles of precision-guided munitions including Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) tail kits and GBU-39/B small diameter bombs (SDB); expedite the transfer of KC-46A aerial refueling tankers as well as additional F-35 stealth fighter jets, CH-53k heavy-lift helicopters, and fast-tracking F-15i fighter jets.
With a need to keep ahead of increased threats in the Middle East, Israel’s Air Force has been in talks to upgrade its aging squadrons, including fighter jets, transport helicopters, and tankers that are required for long-range missions and nearing the age of 60. 
In addition, the US must “ensure sufficiently robust” air defense batteries and interceptor stockpiles and expand and deepen bilateral intelligence cooperation on Iran’s nuclear program and regional aggression.
In a trilateral meeting between the United States, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken warned that Washington was ready to stop the diplomatic route and is “prepared to turn to other options if Iran doesn’t change course.”
But, with no diplomatic options likely to push Tehran to stop its nuclear program, Israel’s military believes that the Islamic Republic needs to be aware that should it continue with its program, it will face harsher sanctions and a true military option to stop it.
In an attempt to degrade the Iranian threats, Israel has been carrying out a war-between-wars campaign since 2013 against Iranian and Hezbollah targets. This past year saw the most operational activity in that campaign since it began, on all borders and beyond.
IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kohavi told reporters in August that Israel’s military is accelerating its operational plans against Iran due to the progress of the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program.
“The progress of the Iranian nuclear program has led the IDF to accelerate its operational plans and the recently approved defense budget is earmarked for that,” he said.
Defense Minister Benny Gantz has also warned that Israel is working to strengthen its capabilities against Iran and if there is no deal, “we are working to define what Plan B is and start other actions.”


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