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September 02, 2012

Ha'aretz Disputes Time Report on U.S.-Israeli Drill

Aegis destroyer.jpg
One American Aegis destroyer, instead of the two oriiginally planned, will take part in the October joint exercise

In today's print edition, Ha'aretz's Amos Harel disputes part of Time Magazine's article yesterday concerning a reduction in the number of U.S. troops slated to take part in a joint U.S.-Israeli military drill this October. Harel writes:

Time implies that the reason for the downgrading of the drill -- called Austere Challenge 12 -- is related to differences concerning the Israeli willingness to strike Iran's nuclear facilities in the near future. But, in practice, it is highly unlikely that these differences are the true reason.

The drill was initially supposed to take place last May, but was then postponed to October.

At the time, Israeli officials said that the October drill would be smaller than originally planned. The reason is primarily U.S. budget considerations. The decrease in the number of U.S. soldiers in Israel for the drill doesn't carry deep significance, since the U.S. presence in Israel during the weeks of the drill is already noteworthy -- and these are the critical weeks as far as the Iran strike is concerned.

Officials believe that if Israel strikes the nuclear facilities in Iran, Tehran would, in any case, accuse the U.S. of being part of the planning, pointing at the forces present in Israel at the time of the strike. From that perspective there is no substantial difference if there will be between 1,000-1,500 soldiers on the exercise, or 5,000 -- the original number planned for the May maneuver.

In May, the U.S. Department of Defense released this report about budget tightening affecting drills with allies.

Posted by TS at September 2, 2012 02:16 AM

Comments

WHY IS THE BUDGET RESTRAINT ONLY INVOKED WHEN IT

COMES TO ISRAEL HOW ABOUT ALL OTHER US FUNDS

AVAILABLE TO AFHGANISTAN, PAKISTAN, EGYPTM, AND NMANY OTHER COUNTRYS WITH TROOPS ON GROUND, OR MONEY?

Posted by: monroe spiegel at September 3, 2012 10:25 AM

I believe the Joint Mission with the US and Israel is one of the most important examples of allies cooperation in US /Israel history.It was not too long ago that the US would not send seriously wounded US soldiers in Beruit to Israeli hospitals.They died aboard a US aircraft carrier sick bay because of the delay in getting them to a fully staffed hospital.May this Joint Cooperation continue forever.

Posted by: Jay Strauss at September 6, 2012 11:24 AM

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