Over the last year, the United States refused to approve any major
Israeli weapons requests. Government sources asserted that the refusal
represented a White House policy to link most arms sales to Israel to
progress in the U.S. plan to establish a Palestinian state in the West Bank.
At the same time, Obama has approved more than $10 billion worth of arms
sales to Arab League states, including Egypt, Kuwait, Jordan, Morocco, Saudi
Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. JINSA said Israel, which receives more
than $2.4 billion in annual American military aid, refrained from objecting
to U.S. plans to sell F-16s, Harpoon Block 2 anti-ship missiles, Hellfire
air-to-ground missiles, fast attack craft and helicopters to Egypt.
In a Jan. 27 report, the institute, regarded as close to the Defense
Department and U.S. military, said the White House has blocked key weapons
projects and upgrades for Israel. JINSA said Obama rejected Israel's request
for AH-64D Apache Longbow helicopters while approving advanced F-16
multi-role fighters for Egypt.
"Indeed, Israel's request for six AH-64D Apache Longbow attack
helicopters was blocked by the Obama Administration in June — the same time
the Egyptian sale was approved," the report said.
The administration's policy, the report said, has violated a pledge
given more than 40 years ago to maintain Israel's military superiority over
its Arab neighbors. JINSA said the erosion of Israel's qualitative edge
began under the previous administration of President George Bush.
"How does Israel compete when the Obama administration announces 24 more
F-16s for Egypt and 24 additional F-16s for Morocco," the report said. "The
concept of the Qualitative Military Edge failed to keep up with the changes
in U.S. arms sales and training policy over the decades."
JINSA dismissed Israeli government claims that the White House was ready
to address the erosion of Israel's military superiority. The institute said
the January 2010 visit by U.S. National Security Advisor James Jones did not
concern Israel's qualitative military edge.
"Actually, it was to push Israel into more pointless talks with
Palestinians, who declined to cooperate," the institute said.
The U.S. aid to Arab states, the report said, has hampered Israeli
military cooperation with Washington. More than 20 years ago, the Israel Air
Force stopped participating in U.S.-sponsored regional exercises to prevent
the leakage of combat tactics.
"It's one thing for our lover to take pictures in the bedroom," the
report quoted an Israeli combat pilot as saying. "It is another for them to
sell the pictures on the street."
JINSA said Israel has lost its advantage over the Arabs regarding the
quantity and quality of weapons. The institute said the Arabs also appear to
have caught up to Israel in the area of tactics and training. The sole
advantage was said to concern the quality of Israeli soldiers and officers.
"Changing Israel's local security paradigm at the same time as increased
sales to the neighbors -- and no new sales to Israel — means the balance is
pushed further out of whack," the report said.