by Thalif DeenIsrael Violates Law on U.S. Weapons in MideastFri Jul 21, 2006 14:28
Israel Violates Law on U.S. Weapons in Mideast
Published July 18, 2006 by the Inter Press Service
by Thalif Deen
"Israel's prodigious military power -- currently unleashed on a virtually defenseless Lebanon -- is sourced primarily to the United States.
UNITED NATIONS - Israel is in violation of U.S. arms control laws for deploying U.S.-made fighter planes, combat helicopters and missiles to kill civilians and destroy Lebanon's infrastructure in the ongoing six-day devastation of that militarily-weak country.
The death toll, according to published reports, is over 200 people -- mostly civilians -- while the economic losses have been estimated at about 100 million dollars per day.
"Section 4 of the (U.S.) Arms Export Control Act requires that military items transferred to foreign governments by the United States be used solely for internal security and legitimate self-defense," says Stephen Zunes, professor of politics at the University of San Francisco.
"Since Israeli attacks against Lebanon's civilian infrastructure and population centers clearly go beyond legitimate self-defense, the United States is legally obliged to suspend arms transfers to Israel," Zunes told IPS.
Frida Berrigan, a senior research associate with the Arms Trade Resource Center at the World Policy Institute in New York, is equally outraged at the misuse by Israel of U.S.-supplied weapons.
"As Israel jets bombard locations in Gaza, Haifa and Beirut, killing civilians (including as many as seven Canadians vacationing in Aitaroun), it is worth remembering that U.S. law is clear about how U.S.-origin weapons and military systems ought to be used," Berrigan told IPS.
She pointed out that the U.S. Arms Export Control Act clear states that U.S. origin weapons should not be used for "non-defensive purposes."
"In light of this clear statement, the United States has an opportunity to stave off further bloodshed and suffering by demanding that its weaponry and military aid not be used in attacks against Lebanon and elsewhere, and challenging Israeli assertions that it is using military force defensively," she added.
That would demonstrate the kind of "utmost restraint" that world leaders called for at the G8 Summit of the world's most industrialized nations, which just ended in St. Petersburg, Russia.
The 25-member European Union has said that Israel's military retaliation against Lebanon is "grossly disproportionate" to the kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers last week by the Islamic militant group Hezbollah, which is a coalition partner of the U.S.-supported government in Beirut.
Israel has accused both Syria and Iran of providing rockets and missiles to Hezbollah, which has used these weapons to hit mostly civilian targets inside Israel.
Israel's prodigious military power -- currently unleashed on a virtually defenseless Lebanon -- is sourced primarily to the United States.
Armed mostly with state-of-the-art U.S.-supplied fighter planes and combat helicopters, the Israeli military is capable of matching a combination of all or most of the armies in most Middle Eastern countries, including Iran, Syria, Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
The air force has continued to devastate Beirut and its suburbs with no resistance in the skies during six days of incessant bombings, causing civilian deaths and infrastructure destruction.
"The Israeli Air Force now flies only U.S.-origin fighters, a mix of F-15s and F-16s, and the rest of the service's fleet is almost completely of U.S. origin," says Tom Baranauskas, a senior Middle East analyst at Forecast International, a leading provider of defense market intelligence services in the United States.
While in earlier years Israel bought from a variety of arms suppliers, with the French in particular being strong sellers to Israel of such items as Mirage fighters, over the past couple of decades the United States has developed into Israel's preponderant arms supplier, he added.
"The U.S. domination as Israel's arms supplier can be seen in the Congressional Research Service's (CRS) annual study of arms sales," Baranauskas told IPS.
He said the latest CRS survey shows a total of 8.4 billion dollars of arms deliveries to Israel in the 1997-2004 period, with fully 7.1 billion dollars or 84.5 percent coming from a single source: the United States.
A major factor in this trend was the rise in U.S. Foreign Military Financing (FMF) -- outright U.S. grants to Israel -- which now totals about 2.3 billion dollars a year paid for by U.S. taxpayers.
By U.S. law, Baranauskas said, 74 percent of FMF assistance to Israel must be spent on U.S. military products. This U.S. assistance has now become the main source of financing for Israel's major arms procurements, especially its fighter planes.
From a historical perspective, he said, U.S. assistance to Israel during 1950-2005 has been staggeringly high: Foreign Military Financing (FMF) amounting to 59.5 billion dollars; 27 billion dollars in Foreign Military Sales (FMS) mostly government-to-government arms transactions; and eight billion dollars in commercial arms sales by the private sector.
Berrigan of the Arms Trade Resource Center said the United States is undoubtedly the primary supplier of Israeli firepower.
In the interest of strengthening Israel's security and maintaining the country's "qualitative military edge" over neighboring militaries, the U.S. Congress provides Israel with annual FMF grants that represent about 23 percent of its overall defense budget. Israel's 2006 military budget is estimated at 7.4 billion dollars.
According to the Congressional Research Service, FMF levels are expected to increase incrementally by 60 million dollars a year to a level of 2.4 billion dollars by 2008 compared with 2.2 billion dollars in 2005.
"Israel has been the largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid every year since 1976," Berrigan said.
Additionally, the United States provides Israel with billions of dollars worth of weaponry.
She pointed out that recent military sales to Israel include propulsion systems for fast patrol boats worth more than 15 million dollars from MTU Detroit Diesel; an eight-million-dollar contract to Lockheed Martin for high-tech infrared "navigation and targeting" capabilities for Israeli jets; and a 145-million-dollar deal with Oshkosh Truck Corp to build more than 900 armour kits for Israeli Medium Tactical Vehicles.
In December of last year, Lockheed Martin was awarded a 29.8-million-dollar contract to provide spares part for Israel's F-16 fighter planes.
Berrigan also said that Israel has one of the world's largest fleets of F-16 fighter planes, made in Fort Worth, Texas and also in Israel by Lockheed Martin Corporation.
Israel has a total of over 378 F-16s, considered one of the world's most advanced fighter planes -- besides 117 F-15s, 94 Skyhawks, 110 Phantoms -- all supplied by the United States.
Copyright © 2006 IPS-Inter Press Service
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2. Israeli Onslaught Will Only Strengthen Hizbullah
Power Politics via Crisis Management on War Steroids;
Radicalizing the Middle East as Pretext for Iran Attack.
There are sinister forces behind the over-kill insanity in Gaza and Lebanon that are an extension of the Big Lie of 9-11, the lies that led to Iraq and the lies being pounded into the American psyche about Iran.
The global Internet has awakened much of the world to 9-11 truth with conclusions too horrible for many U.S. citizens to believe. Did you know that Morgan Reynolds, former Chief Economist in the Department of Labor, under George Bush, has come out and said he thinks 9/11 was an inside job? So has Ray McGovern, CIA analyst who briefed both Bush and Reagan; Paul Craig Roberts the Deputy Secretary of the Treasury [and] father of Reaganomics; and among others Lieutenant Colonel, Bob Bowman, who was the former director of advanced space programs development under Ford and Carter. These people all coming out now in this thing they call the 9/11 truth movement and saying that they believe that not only did our government allow this to happen and cover it up, but also [members of the US govt.] had something to do with the attacks. Polls, Zogby polls are even reflecting that a lot of Americans are believing this as well.
From the beginning, we've been lied to about 9-ll. Six of the Arabs – who we were immediately told hijacked the planes -- turned up alive in the Mid-East, complaining of identity theft. Did you know that Osama Bin Laden, in one of his first videos after 9/11/2001, actually denied in a video that we don't get to see here in the United States, that he had anything to do with the 9/11 attacks? And then the media showed the "fat Bin Laden" video, where he's a good 40 pounds heavier and has a different kind of a nose, saying that he did participate in 9/11. And that's really the best proof we have from Osama Bin Laden that he did 9/11.
But the Zionist-dominated corporate media never reports this, nor all the other blaring facts like the owner of the World Trade Center admitting that the 3rd building collapsing that day was demolished by explosives, as firefighters claim the first two buildings were. So what’s going on here?
It is democracy that has been hijacked with shock and awe, intrigue and treachery, and incessant media propaganda that creates an enemy to rally the public for the Zionist's "Greater Israel agenda. The same plutocrat families and bankster buddies that orchestrated World Wars I and II have an agenda for WWIII that will consolidate their power to enforce their corporate monopolies on energy, drugs, media and the "remnant" after their long-planned reduction in population.
This plot out of hell has now forced the removal of a half million Lebanese while setting up Iran for expansion of the Zionist's plans.
To deny the face of fascism is to be party to it - the war party. To deny a conscience of greater LOVE is the cause of all suffering.
The global Net reality of our connection -- the Family of Man -- is the judgment on the antichrist forces subverting all that honorable people hold sacred.
By the grace of LOVE in the heart of mankind, enough good people will challenge the war-crazed insanity of leaders and hasten their judgment to save our own souls.
Via NY Transfer News Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit
The Daily Star (Lebanon) - 18 July 2006
Israeli onslaught will strengthen, not weaken, Hizbullah's popular appeal
Despite the mounting civilian death toll in Lebanon, and despite
increasing evidence of Israeli violations of international law, the
heavyweights in the international community are once again following
the lead of US President George W. Bush, who has effectively given a
green light to Israel's destruction of Lebanon.
Truncated, for the complete article, see:
"We are going to be in such a fix when this war is over, or before this war is over.
Our grandchildren's grandchildren are going to be paying for this war.
I look at our future as, I'm sorry, being very, very dark."
March 19, 2003
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