Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
The State Department Approves the Sale of Tank Ammunition to Israel in a Deal That Bypasses Congress
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 4 months ago on
December 11, 2023

Share

WASHINGTON — Going around Congress, the Biden administration said Saturday it has approved the emergency sale to Israel of nearly 14,000 rounds of tank ammunition worth more than $106 million as Israel intensifies its military operations in the southern Gaza Strip.

The move comes as President Joe Biden’s request for a nearly $106 billion aid package for Ukraine, Israel and other national security is languishing in Congress, caught up in a debate over U.S. immigration policy and border security. Some Democratic lawmakers have spoken of making the proposed $14.3 billion in American assistance to its Mideast ally contingent on concrete steps by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to reduce civilian casualties in Gaza during the war with Hamas.

State Department’s Statement

The State Department said it had notified Congress of the sale late Friday after Secretary of State Antony Blinken determined “an emergency exists that requires the immediate sale” of the munitions in the U.S. national security interest.

That means the purchase will bypass the congressional review requirement for foreign military sales. Such determinations are rare, but not unprecedented, when administrations see an urgent need for weapons to be delivered without waiting for lawmakers’ approval.

“The United States is committed to the security of Israel, and it is vital to U.S. national interests to assist Israel to develop and maintain a strong and ready self-defense capability. This proposed sale is consistent with those objectives,” the department said in a statement. “Israel will use the enhanced capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense.”

Details of the Sale

The sale is worth $106.5 million and includes 13,981 120 mm High Explosive Anti-Tank Multi-Purpose with Tracer tank cartridges as well as U.S. support, engineering and logistics. The materiel will come from Army inventory.

Historical Precedents

Bypassing Congress with emergency determinations for arms sales is an unusual step that has in the past met resistance from lawmakers, who normally have a period of time to weigh on proposed weapons transfers and, in some cases, block them.

In May, 2019, then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made an emergency determination for an $8.1 billion sales of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan after it became clear that the Trump administration would have trouble overcoming lawmakers’ concerns about the Saudi- UAE-led war in Yemen.

Pompeo came under heavy criticism for the move, which some believed may have violated the law because many of the weapons involved had yet to be built and could not be delivered urgently. But he was cleared of any wrongdoing after an internal investigation.

At least four administrations have used the authority since 1979. President George H.W. Bush’s administration used it during the Gulf War to get arms quickly to Saudi Arabia.

 

RELATED TOPICS:

DON'T MISS

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

DON'T MISS

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

DON'T MISS

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

DON'T MISS

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

DON'T MISS

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

DON'T MISS

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

DON'T MISS

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

DON'T MISS

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

DON'T MISS

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

DON'T MISS

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

UP NEXT

Israeli Settlers Rampage Through a West Bank Village, Killing 1 Palestinian and Wounding 25

UP NEXT

US Intelligence Finding Shows China Surging Equipment Sales to Russia to Help War Effort in Ukraine

UP NEXT

More Aid Is Supposed to Be Entering the Gaza Strip. Why Isn’t It Helping?

UP NEXT

Wife of Julian Assange Says Biden’s Comments Mean Case Could Be Moving in the Right Direction

UP NEXT

Hamas Leader Says 3 Sons, 4 Grandchildren Killed in ‘Revenge’ Israeli Attack

UP NEXT

Blinken and Cameron Urge Congress to Approve Aid for Ukraine, Calling It Critical for World Security

UP NEXT

Austin Tells Congress Israel Is Taking Steps to Boost Aid to Gaza as Lawmakers Question US Support

UP NEXT

55% of Americans Disapprove of Israeli Actions in Gaza: Poll

UP NEXT

Netanyahu Vows to Invade Rafah, Which US Calls a Mistake

UP NEXT

Will China Flood the Globe With EVs, Green Tech? Latest on US-China Trade Fight

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

4 hours ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

16 hours ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

17 hours ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

18 hours ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

19 hours ago

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

19 hours ago

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

19 hours ago

Israeli Settlers Rampage Through a West Bank Village, Killing 1 Palestinian and Wounding 25

21 hours ago

US Intelligence Finding Shows China Surging Equipment Sales to Russia to Help War Effort in Ukraine

22 hours ago

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Land Before Time Litter’s Journey

23 hours ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

When Sacramento changed its plan to demolish a homeless encampment on a vacant lot on Colfax Street, instead offering the homeless occupants...

2 hours ago

2 hours ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

3 hours ago

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

4 hours ago

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

4 hours ago

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

16 hours ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

17 hours ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

18 hours ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

19 hours ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend