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Sunday, January 15, 2012

More on cancellation of the US - Israel anti-missile exercise

Israel Radio reports (6:00 pm) that the US - Israel join anti-missile defense exercise was canceled in part due to the 'sensitive timing.' That sounds much more plausible than budgetary constraints.

In the meantime, there's this:
Senior military officers told The Jerusalem Post that the drill scheduled for April has been canceled, while defense officials said that it was possible that it would be held later in 2012.

The drill, expected to involve the deployment of thousands of US troops in Israel, was scheduled to last around a week and mark the first time that a top US military commander would participate in the simulations.

The parties were scheduled to simulate missile defense scenarios with the objective of creating a high level of interoperability so that, if needed, US missile defense systems would be able to work with Israeli systems during a conflict.

Officials refused to elaborate on the reasons behind talks to postpone or cancel the drill, but said they were mostly "technical and logistical."

Talks about postponing the drill took the Americans, as well as the Israeli Air Defense division, responsible for missile defense, by surprise. Just last Thursday, top IAF officers had said that the drill was scheduled for this spring.

This year’s drill was expected to be unique in its size and scope and also mark the first time that commander of the US European Command, Adm. James Stavridis, would participate in the simulations. In the event of war, the EUCOM commander will be responsible for approving Israeli requests to deploy US missile defense systems in Israel.

The planned drill had caused tension in the region amid concern that Israel is planning an attack against Iran's nuclear facilities in the near future, and therefore is bolstering its defenses together with the US.

It is possible that talks about postponing the drill can also be contributed to increased American concern that an Israeli strike is being planned.
You might recall that ten days ago, I reported that American troops were going to be deployed in Israel (i.e. stay here afterward) in connection with the exercise. I suspect that the IDF and military intelligence did not want American troops under Obama looking over its shoulders, and that may have had something to do with the cancellation.

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At 8:52 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

" The Americans also hope the economic and diplomatic pressure on Iran will force it to engage in talks over its nuclear program."

Obama just POSTPONED the oil sanctions for 6 months....on who's side is he?

At 9:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't think so. Obama is afraid to forthrightly stand with Israel. It's on him, not the IDF. Of course, this timidity encourages the very tensions he claims to wish to defuse, but then his negotiations are, as he knows well, a strategy for slow-motion acceptance of Iranian nukes.


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