Israel’s War Against Palestine: Documenting the Military Occupation of Palestinian and Arab Lands

Military Export/Import

Former Israeli defence (then industry) minister Benjamin Ben Eliezer: “People like to buy things that have been tested. If Israel sells weapons, they have been tested, tried out. We can say we’ve used this 10 years, 15 years.”

The 2014 National Defense Authorization Act, adopted by the US House of Representatives by a large majority on June 14, includes an amendment that requires the US to ensure that Israel can defend itself against “existential threats”… The amendment, initiated by Representative Peter Roskam (Republican, Illinois), states, “It is the policy of the United States to take all necessary steps to ensure that Israel possesses and maintains an independent capability to remove existential threats to its security and defend its vital national interests”.

The “Eitan” drone can take off and land automatically, is able to stay in the air for 36 straight hours and reach a maximum flight height of 45,000 feet. In addition, the craft can carry cargo weighing up to one ton. All of these qualities make the Eitan especially suited for long-range and advanced reconnaissance and intelligence missions.

The UMass Boston Undergraduate Student Government unanimously passed a bill demanding that the UMass Foundation, the university’s investment fund, divest from Boeing and other companies profiting from war crimes and/or human rights violations. This motion is a resounding victory for student activists nationwide and contributes to broader international solidarity movements, including the movement for Boycotts, Divestment, and Sanctions of Israel (BDS) as called for by Palestinian civil society in 2005.

The poem, originally published in the Süddeutsche Zeitung, has created a heated debate in both Germany and Israel.

Economic war of attrition: “Each Iron Dome system costs $50,000,000 and each Tamir interceptor it employs has a price tag of no less than $62,000. In contrast, each of the Qassam rockets that the Iron Dome is meant to intercept cost no more than $1,000. It is believed that there are tens of thousands of Qassam rockets in Gaza alone and the capacity to produce more.”

IOA Editor: The Israeli leadership has long preferred a ‘technology fix’ when dealing with problems arising from the Occupation. Disregarding the underlying assumptions made by the author, it is clear that technology fixes have significant limitations. In this case, a nation gone mad, preferring occupation to security and stability — both physical and economic — not to mention justice which, clearly, is not a policy consideration.

South Korea has offered to buy a significant quantity of Israeli-made weapons and defense systems, including the anti-rocket Iron Dome system, if Israel agrees to purchase South Korean fighter jets.

IOA Editor: From crushing Palestinian resistance — however misguided and ineffective — in Gaza via Israeli ‘technological fixes’ (with extra US funding) to profiting from them around the world. The show, called ‘Occupation,’ must go on because there’s no business like war business…

Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and Barack Obama are pissed off at [Netanyahu] because he’s not as good a liar as his predecessors in the PM’s Office. They’re angry because he doesn’t bother to cover up the gap between the words and the bulldozers. It makes it harder for them to conceal the falsehood in US and European policy. A policy which supposedly seeks peace in the region and a state for the Palestinians; in practice, one that collaborates with Israel’s aim to impose a capitulation arrangement on the Palestinians.

US Assistant Secretary for Political-Military Affairs Andrew Shapiro says security relationship with Israel is broader, deeper, more intense than ever before.

Human rights groups and international media have been reporting for years that the IDF uses unmanned drones armed with missiles in order to attack targets in Gaza. This is the first instance of it being published in WikiLeaks, quoting the words of the IDF Advocate-General.

Israel Aerospace Industries unveiled over the weekend its latest development in the field of secret unmanned aerial vehicles – a miniature aircraft weighing four kilograms, known as GHOST to foreign customers.

IOA Editor: Israel’s approach to dealing with Palestinian civil society has often been via a ‘technology fix:’ Spot and Shoot, robotic fighting machines, Shock Vehicle and, last but not least, the Caterpillar bulldozer.

This most recent addition to Israel’s arsenal will enable occupation forces to observe urban resistance in narrow alleys, ‘around the corner,’ via a device remotely controlled at the platoon level.

As with the other ‘fixes,’ GHOST could potentially lessen IDF casualties thus making the cost of occupation more acceptable to Israeli society, while enabling the IAI to sell yet another product, tested on the backs of Palestinians, to shady governments around the world.

Israel’s Air Force on Monday concluded a two-week drill with the Hellenic Air Force as the two nations cemented growing ties between their militaries, recently reflected in Greece’s recent move to halt a Gaza-bound flotilla set to depart from its shores.

Yaakov Amidror, newly appointed head of National Security Council, worked with many Ofer-controlled companies; the Ofer brothers are uspected of illegal trade with Iran through subsidiaries registered abroad.

IOA Editor: While Israeli leaders continue to raise the Iranian Threat as a diversion from Israel’s enhanced colonial efforts, prominent Israeli security officials have been exposed in the upper management tier of a leading Israeli conglomerate suspected of illegally trading with Iran. Hypocrisy knows no bounds, and the same goes for propaganda.

Israeli Defense Ministry director general: Five countries interested in Iron Dome, Israel’s anti-missile system.

IOA Editor: There’s no business like arms business… The Occupation has been very good to Israel’s arms industry, serving as a live shooting range, practice killing fields for the high tech systems Israel is marketing to countries around the world. As Amira Hass wrote in 2009, Israel knows that peace just doesn’t pay. For more on the economic benefits of the Occupation, see the Shir Hever interview series The Political Economy of Israel’s Occupation.

It used to be that when you counted off Israel’s top allies, the obvious names came to mind. Germany, the UK, and of course, the US. These days, Canada seems determined to soar to the top of that list. Taking it straight from the horse’s mouth – Avigdor Lieberman – Israel’s Foreign Minister. While visiting Canada in 2009 he said, “Canada is so friendly that there was no need to convince or explain anything to anyone… We need allies like this in the international arena.” In fact Canada’s arms trade with Israel, its military cooperation with the Israeli occupation and its political support make Canada a very dear ally for Israel indeed.

While portraying the image of the “honest broker” Canada’s military and intelligence cooperation and arms trade with Israel paint a different picture. The Real News’ Lia Tarachansky interviews Yves Engler, the author of Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid about the political, military, and corporate support Canada extends Israel and its meddling in Palestinian internal politics. She also speaks to Richard Sanders of the Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade about Canada’s weapons export to Israel and the government’s failure to report accurate exports statistics.

The US and Israel have successfully tested Israel’s Arrow 2 ballistic anti-missile system off the coast of California. The joint exercise between Israel Aerospace Industries and the US Missile Defense Agency involved firing a missile from an offshore platform inside a US Navy firing range to see if the Arrow 2 system would detect and destroy the missile.

The Indian Air Force and the Israeli weapons manufacturer Rafael Advanced Defense Systems are set to sign a major contract in March 2011, which will outfit India’s Tejas fighter jets with Rafael’s Derby missile.

With US-made tear gas canisters fired on protesters in Cairo, Washington’s role in arming Egypt is under the spotlight.

US forces have fired so many bullets in Iraq and Afghanistan – an estimated 250,000 for every insurgent killed – that American ammunition-makers cannot keep up with demand. As a result the US is having to import supplies from Israel.

According to the [US] ambassador, “Segments of the Irish public … see the [Shannon] airport as a symbol of Irish complicity in perceived US wrongdoing in the Gulf/Middle East.”

IOA Editor: And what might that be, one wonders?

RELATED Noam Chomsky: WikiLeaks cables reveal “profound hatred for democracy on the part of our political leadership”

Israel signed a contract for 20 F-35s – a fifth-generation stealth fighter jet made by Lockheed Martin – in early October in a deal valued at $2.75 billion. Under the offer made to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during his meeting last week with US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, Israel would receive a second, free squadron of the advanced fighter jet if it agrees to impose a three-month freeze on settlement construction.

IOA Editor: $2.75B worth of long-distance killing machines, free of the usual “charge,” in return for a short 3-month pretense of a stop of colonization: An even greater US taxpayer subsidy of Israel, Lockheed Martin, and other US and Israeli military corporations. Not a terribly impressive deal, for a guy who graduated from Harvard Law School.

Israel committed to buying the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter … using a $3 billion defense grant from the United States.

IOA Editor: The US taxpayer giveth and Lockheed-Martin/Israel taketh.

Norway’s foreign ministry advised that it will no longer allow us[ing] its territory for naval experiments on submarines intended for the Israeli navy. This is not Norway’s first security boycott on Israel. A year ago the Norwegian State Pension Fund announced it was dropping Elbit Systems due to the manufacturer’s involvement in building the West Bank separation fence.

The entire deal will be funded by American military… In a bid to maintain Israel’s technological gap ahead of Arab states, the F-35 deal was pushed through instead of upgrading the air force’s F-15s and F-16s. This approach sticks to the principle that Israel is the first country in the Middle East to receive the newest fighter aircraft.

IOA Editor: It is unclear why this is treated as though “Israel decided to buy…” while the story states that the “entire deal will be funded by American military.” Another whopping gift to Israel, and to corporate America, from the US taxpayer.

President Barack Obama has personally warned Turkey’s prime minister that unless Ankara shifts its position on Israel and Iran it stands little chance of obtaining the US weapons it wants to buy.

Barak: “The F-35 is a fighter jet of the future that will enable Israel to continue its air superiority and mainatain its qualitative edge in the region… The plane will provide the air force with better long-range and short-range capabilities in a manner that will help ensure national security.”

Two of the US closest allies in the ME, Israel and Saudi Arabia, are on the brink of signing large arms deals with the US in a move designed to ratchet up the pressure on Iran, according to defence analysts. [T]he joint strengthening of the Saudi Arabian and Israeli militaries was seen as a key regional interest for the US.

The Obama administration plans to sell advanced F-15 fighter jets to Saudi Arabia but won’t equip them with long-range weapons systems and other arms whose inclusion was strongly opposed by Israel, diplomats and officials said.

Israeli defense companies have scored one of the biggest deals in the industry’s history: They will be making about $4 billion worth of parts for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter [manufactured by] Lockheed Martin… The discussions about Israel’s involvement were led by Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

IOA Editor: There’s no business like War Business, to misappropriate Irving Berlin.

An expanded security aid package should allow Israel to reach tough decisions in its peace talks with the Palestinians, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Andrew J. Shapiro said Friday, adding that Washington planned to provide Israel with its most extensive security aid package in history.

IOA Editor: If you believe this, we have a local bridge to sell you. An important update from an Administration that, when it comes to the ME, is no better than its predecessors, and possibly even worse. Wearing his horse-blinds tightly, Mr. Obama is telling us he didn’t mean a word he said in Cairo last year (“A New Beginning“).

According to the investigation … the goods could have been used to manufacture nuclear weapons and missile programs… It is worth mentioning that in the 1980s … Israeli companies and individuals have been involved in all sorts of technological espionage, steeling US secrets, technology and equipment.

It has become impossible to supervise the defense budget … It is utterly opaque. The system does everything to deflect true supervision… [T]he army is completely opaque to us. There is no civilian supervision over the IDF.

IOA Editor: This is an important story, confirming Amira Hass’s assertions, made regularly, about the power of the Israeli defense industry — from the professional classes of the IDF to the private sector arms manufacturers, dealer/exporters, “consultants,” and the rest — and the inherent financial and personal interest it has in continuing the Occupation. The Occupation is an essential part of the “business environment” of Israel’s largest and most influential economic sector. Civilian financial oversight of the IDF is only one aspect of a much bigger picture. See also:

Amira Hass: Israel knows that peace just doesn’t pay
Jonathan Cook: Remote-Controlled Killing
The Political Economy of Israel’s Occupation

Spot and Shoot, as it is called by the Israeli military, may look like a video game but the figures on the screen are real people — Palestinians in Gaza — who can be killed with the press of a button on the joystick. The [Israeli] female soldiers, located far away in an operations room, are responsible for aiming and firing remote-controlled machine-guns mounted on watch-towers every few hundred metres along an electronic fence that surrounds Gaza.

Israel on Tuesday launched a spy satellite from a base in the south of the country, the defence ministry said, with the device reportedly capable of monitoring arch-foe Iran.

A Turkish military delegation arrived Tuesday in Tel Aviv to conclude test-runs in the delivery of four Israeli-made drones, the remaining lot in a 10-UAV deal between Turkey and Israel.

IOA Editor: From the invisible hand of the market to the invisible hand on the trigger. Killings by Made-in-Israel drones to continue.

  • Page 1 of 2
  • 1
  • 2