Graham says Israel will request $1 billion from US after Gaza war
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Tuesday that Israel will request $1 billion from the U.S. to replenish its Iron Dome missile defense system and other military supplies after an 11-day war with militants in the Gaza Strip.
Graham, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, met Tuesday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz as he tours Israel following the fighting. The panel on which Graham sits is in charge of foreign military aid.
“There will be a $1 billion request coming to the Pentagon this week from the defense minister to replenish the Iron Dome and a few other things, to upgrade the system,” Graham said at a press conference.
The expected request comes after Israel leaned heavily on its Iron Dome interception system to knock thousands of rockets fired by Gaza Strip militants out of the sky.
Graham said he expected the request to garner bipartisan approval in Congress, which is narrowly controlled by Democrats.
“There’s been a big dustup over the last engagement between Hamas and the State of Israel in the United States, but I’m here to tell you that there’s a wide and deep support for Israel among the Democratic Party,” Graham said.
President Biden has already committed to replenishing Israel’s supply of Iron Dome rockets.
The 11-day war killed 243 Palestinians, including 66 children. A dozen Israelis, including two children, were also killed.
A cease-fire that went into effect on May 21 has thus far held, though both sides say they remain ready should the other violate the agreement.
Israel’s punishing aerial and artillery campaign drew broad condemnations from Democrats, though the party is still anticipated to broadly approve of Israel’s request for its Iron Dome system.