Israel war: Armed Services senators press Austin to send spare Iron Dome batteries


Oct 12, 2023.  Posted by  Balkan Periscope - Hellas

A bipartisan group of Senate Armed Services Committee members sent a letter to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday requesting that the Pentagon send Iron Dome batteries to Israel as the country faces near-constant rocket fire from Hamas terrorists.

The letter, which was led by Sen. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and co-signed by Sens. Mike Rounds (R-SD), Rick Scott (R-FL), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), notes that the U.S. Army is in possession of two batteries for the Iron Dome, Israel’s famed missile defense system that launches interceptors to block incoming rockets.

The anti-missile system has been in frequent use since last weekend’s terrorist attack, with Hamas firing thousands of rockets into populated areas of Israel since Saturday. The Israel Defense Forces says more than 4,500 hundred rockets have been fired into the country since the carnage began, though most have been intercepted.

"As you know, the United States Army is currently in possession of two Iron Dome batteries that have not been deployed and have no operational use inside the United States where they are currently stored," the letter states. "Immediately transferring these two Iron Dome batteries that are not in use to Israel would provide tangible, life-saving and sustained support to our ally as it faces rocket and missile salvos that threaten to overwhelm its defenses."

"We likewise implore you to provide Israel with other defensive assets that could be useful as it faces this unprecedented onslaught of terrorist violence," the senators added.

The letter requested a response from Austin by this Friday.

At least 1,200 people inside Israel and 22 Americans are dead as a result of the carnage, while more than 2,500 have been injured. In addition, more than 1,000 Palestinians have died since the conflict erupted on Saturday.

Those numbers do not account for the more than 100 Israelis and Americans being held hostage by Hamas, the Iran-backed terrorist group that operates in Gaza and carried out the assault.


Washington Examiner