by Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger
The February 2010 visit to Israel by Admiral Mullen, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff, sheds light on the larger context of US-Israel relations, which transcends the Arab-Israeli conflict, leverages Israel's unique capabilities, and benefits both the US and Israel. The visit reaffirms that
Admiral Mullen's visit to Israel centered on a series of aggravated mutual threats and on the implication of the expected US withdrawal from Iraq related to those threats: Iran's nuclearization, global Islamic terrorism, domestic and regional war in Iraq, escalation of the ballistic threat, Iran's subversion of the Gulf and the Middle East, Al-Qaeda's entrenchment in Yemen which controls key sea lanes for oil tankers, the war on the Saudi-Yemen border, the intensification of Iranian-Syrian cooperation, the enhanced Middle Eastern profile of Russia and China, the Islamization of Turkey, etc.
The evacuation of US forces from Iraq could trigger a political/military volcano, with boiling lava sweeping Saudi Arabia, the Gulf and Jordan, further deteriorating the region, highlighting Israel's contribution to the national security of its most critical ally, the USA.
For example, in 2010, US special operations forces in
According to Senator Daniel Inouye, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and its Subcommittee on Defense and a veteran of the Intelligence Committee, contends that "
In September 2006, Israel demolished a nuclear plant in Syria, thus dealing a blow to the anti-US Syria-Iran-North Korea axis, while upgrading the posture of deterrence and joint interests of the US and Israel.
In 1970, a Soviet proxy,
Former Secretary of State, General Alexander Haig, a former Supreme Commander of NATO, refers to Israel as "the largest, most battle-tested and cost-effective US aircraft carrier, which does not require a single US personnel, cannot be sunk and is located at a most critical area for US national security interests."
If Israel did not exist in the eastern flank of the Mediterranean - adjacent to most critical oil resources and water lanes, in the intersection of Europe, Asia and Africa - the US would have to deploy a few aircraft carriers to the region, along with tens of thousands of military personnel, costing scores of billions of dollars annually and risking involvement in additional regional and international confrontations.
The Jewish State constitutes a battle-proven laboratory, which has improved thousands of US-made military systems and technologies, sharing with the US such improvements, thus enhancing the competitive edge of the US defense industries, expanding US employment and export base, upgrading US national security and saving many US lives and mega billion of dollars in terms of research and development cost. For instance, the current generation of the F-16 includes over 600 modifications, which were introduced by
If there had been an Israel-like nation in the
The US-Israel strategic cooperation surged meteorically during 1949-1992, despite rocky disagreements over the Arab-Israeli conflict, entirely due to a series of mutual threats and joint interests, which are much more pertinent to
Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger
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