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US increases funding for ineffective Israeli “Iron Dome”

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Israeli Iron dome intercepts most, but not all missiles. (AFP)

After days of controversy, the US House of Representatives has passed a $1 billion bill to fund Israel's so called Iron Dome missile system. American lawmakers approved the bill in a 420 to 9 vote on Thursday.

The push had appeared in a bill on Tuesday aimed at providing emergency funding to the US government to avoid a shutdown but was later removed without explanation.

The removal was attributed to opposition from a small group of Democrats who demand that US support for Israel be based on the regime's human rights record.

The exclusion of the provision, however, drew strong reactions from Republicans and pro Israeli Democrats, with Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, calling the move "despicable".

The progressive movement in Congress consists of maybe less than 10% of the Congress. So, they have very little power and furthermore, the progressives in Congress don't often use their power, they're intimidated, a lot of times, into going along with the rest of it, so we can't expect very much from the progressives.

Paul Larudee, Free Palestine Movement

Israeli Prime Minister, Naftali Bennett, thanked both parties in the house for their support adding that those who tried to challenge the US support for Israel were given a resounding response.

The bill is now heading to the Senate, where it's highly likely to be approved as emerging politicians from both political camps have traditionally backed Israel.

It's also expected to be signed into law by President Joe Biden, who has already signaled support for the additional aid.

Pro Israel American lawmakers have been pushing for additional funds to be given to Israel to replenish the regime's missile system ever since the most recent war on Gaza ended in a ceasefire earlier this year.

The 11 day conflict, which ended in May, has been the most intense fighting between Palestinian resistance groups and Israel in years.

Palestinians have hailed their victory in the battle, citing the show of force to the Israeli regime by launching over 4000 rockets and scores of drones to combat the occupiers.

The sheer scale of the attacks overwhelmed Israel's so called "Iron Dome" anti missile system.

The War killed over 250 Palestinians, including 66 children in Gaza, and 12 people in Israel.

That's a significant number considering the regimes heavy expenditure on anti missile systems, while the resistance in the impoverished and besieged Gaza Strip has no means of shooting down Israeli missiles.

From the point of view of justice there’s no reason for Palestinians not to have an Iron Dome system. But obviously, that's not what Israel wants at all; Israel wants to cause misery and destruction and death to Palestinians, whenever they feel like it.

Paul Larudee, Free Palestine Movement

The move by Washington to increase aid to Israel comes despite calls by some US politicians and activists to cut funding so as to pressure the regime into respecting Palestinians rights.

All said and done, the reversal of the move to include additional aid to Israel in the US government spending budget suggests that Washington's unwavering support for the regime is beginning to falter; no US lawmaker would have hesitated to approve more funding for Israel a few years ago.

 


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