Israel does not provide weapons to Ukraine for two reasons, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explained in an interview with the Jerusalem Post. Firstly, in Syria, where Israeli pilots fly alongside Russian pilots, it is important for Israel to maintain freedom of action. Additionally, there is a real danger that Israeli weapons could end up in the hands of Iran and be used against the Jewish state.
“I think Israel is in a unique situation. Firstly, we have a close military border with Russia. Our pilots fly right next to Russian pilots over Syria. I believe it is important for us to maintain the freedom to act against Iranian attempts to establish a military presence on our northern border,” said Netanyahu.
Furthermore, the Prime Minister pointed out the threat that any weapon systems Israel transfers to Ukraine may fall into the hands of Iran and be used against the Jewish state.
“By the way, this is not a theoretical possibility. It has happened with Western anti-tank weapons that we currently find on our borders. So we have to be very cautious,” he emphasized.
Netanyahu expressed hope that the situation would change in the future and that Israel would be able to do something to end the conflict. He emphasized the importance of exercising extreme caution in international affairs.
“There is sympathy; there is civilian defense assistance. But I think we have to set boundaries carefully,” said Netanyahu, emphasizing that in discussions on this issue, he finds understanding from most heads of government in Western countries regarding the fact that Israel is in a different situation than other states.
Military aid for Israel
Israel has received more military aid from the United States than any other country since World War II in terms of total funding.
Since 1987, the United States has contributed an average of USD 1.8 billion per year in the form of Foreign Military Sales (FMS), Foreign Military Financing (FMF), and research and development funds.
The U.S. government agreed to give Israel military aid worth at least USD 2.67 billion annually through a Memorandum of Understanding that it signed in 1999. In 2009, the amount was increased to USD 3 billion, and in 2019, it was once again raised, bringing the total to a minimum of USD 3.8 billion that the U.S. is committed to giving Israel annually.