American Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) are urging the Jewish state to allow Washington to transfer Israel's Iron Dome aerial defense system to assist Ukraine in its battle against Russia.
“Each Iron Dome battery can protect an area of approximately 150 square kilometers [58 square miles],” the two senators wrote in a statement. “We can save more Ukrainian lives today if we transfer those batteries.”
Acknowledging Jerusalem’s reluctance to provide military aid to Ukraine, the two senators noted that they were not expecting Israel to transfer its own Iron Dome batteries.
“To be clear, we are not asking Israel to transfer its own Iron Dome systems which are critical to their own security, but simply to allow the United States to transfer our own batteries to help the people of Ukraine,” stated the senators.
United States Army Space and Missile Defense Commander, Lt.-Gen. Daniel Karbler recently stated that Washington has “two Iron Dome batteries right now. One completed new equipment training, new equipment fielding. It is prepared for deployment. The other one is wrapping up its new equipment training right now, so the army does have one [Iron Dome battery] available for deployment if we get a request.”
While Israel has provided considerable humanitarian aid to Ukraine, Jerusalem has so far refused requests from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to provide military aid to the war-torn country, out of concern it would undermine Russian-Israeli ties.
The Ukrainian government has repeatedly expressed its frustration with Jerusalem’s unwillingness to clearly side with Kyiv against Russia.
Following instructions from Kyiv, the Ukrainian embassy in Tel Aviv recently blasted Israel’s Ukraine war policy, saying it is leading to a “path of close cooperation” with Russia.
Israeli officials have stressed coordination with Moscow is crucial for Israel’s continued military freedom of action in Russian-controlled Syrian airspace.
Ukrainian Chief-of-Staff Andriy Yermak recently stressed that only the Jewish state could assist Ukraine against Iranian Russian-manned drones.
“Nobody but Israel can provide equipment to combat attacks by Iranian drones,” stated Yermak.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.