Home > Radical Islam, Wars and Rumors of War > TIME: US Scales-Back Military Exercise With Israel, Affecting Potential Iran Strike

TIME: US Scales-Back Military Exercise With Israel, Affecting Potential Iran Strike


By KARL VICK AND AARON J. KLEIN – “Seven months ago, Israel and the United States postponed a massive joint military exercise that was originally set to go forward just as concerns were brimming that Israel would launch a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The exercise was rescheduled for late October, and appears likely to go forward on the cusp of the U.S. presidential election. But it won’t be nearly the same exercise. Well-placed sources in both countries have told TIME that Washington has greatly reduced the scale of U.S. participation, slashing by more than two-thirds the number of American troops going to Israel and reducing both the number and potency of missile interception systems at the core of the joint exercise.

‘Basically what the Americans are saying is, ‘We don’t trust you,’ a senior Israeli military official tells TIME.

The reductions are striking. Instead of the approximately 5,000 U.S. troops originally trumpeted for Austere Challenge 12, as the annual exercise is called, the Pentagon will send only 1,500 service members, and perhaps as few as 1,200. Patriot anti-missile systems will arrive in Israel as planned, but the crews to operate them will not. Instead of two Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense warships being dispatched to Israeli waters, the new plan is to send one, though even the remaining vessel is listed as a ‘maybe,’ according to officials in both militaries.

A Pentagon spokesperson declined to discuss specifics of the reduced deployment, noting that planning for the exercise was classified. But in an e-mailed statement, Commander Wendy L. Snyder emphasized that the Israeli military has been kept informed of the changes. ‘Throughout all the planning and coordination, we’ve been lock-step with the Israel Defense Force (IDF) and will continue to do so,’ Snyder said.

U.S. commanders privately revealed the scaling back to their Israeli counterparts more than two months ago. The official explanation was budget restrictions. But the American retreat coincided with growing tensions between the Obama and Netanyahu administrations on Israel’s persistent threats to launch an airstrike on Iran.” Read more.

Israeli Paper Details Alleged Tense Confrontation Between Netanyahu, US Ambassador Over Obama Policy: ‘Lightning and Sparks Flew’ – “Two new signs point to the deepening rift between the Obama administration and the Israeli government over how to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons efforts: a reported confrontation between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the U.S. ambassador to Israel and a statement by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey that he doesn’t want to be ‘complicit’ in an Israeli strike on Iran.” Read more.

  1. 09/01/2012 at 2:56 PM

    America is no longer a friend to Israel. Because of this we can be certain that America’s glory days are forever past. Soon we will be placed under the hellish yoke of Islam, or we will be destroyed. Personally, I perfer the latter. Experiencing Obama’s breif reign of treason and terror have been sufficient enough for me to know that whatever Islam offers; I don’t want it!

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  2. Willard
    09/03/2012 at 5:05 PM

    news@israelnationalnews.com

    Monday, Sep 3 ’12, Elul 16, 5772

    7. U.S. Tells Iran: We Won’t Join Israeli Attack
    by Gil Ronen

    Senior officials in the Obama Administration sent a message to Tehran in the past few days, according to which the U.S. does not intend to join Israel’s side if it decides to attack the Iranian nuclear installations on its own, reports Israel’s second-largest paper, Yediot Aharonot.

    According to the report, the U.S. sent the message to Iran in order to avoid an Iranian response military response that would target U.S. installations in the Gulf region.

    The message was reportedly conveyed to Iran through two European countries that serve as a conduit of communication between Iran and the U.S. in times of crisis.

    Nationalist newspaper Makor Rishon has accused Yediot Aharonot of working with the Obama Administration against the Netanyahu government’s planned strike on Iran.

    According to the New York Times, senior U.S. officials have argued that Israel is “trying to corner” Obama into a military commitment that he does not yet need to make.
    Tags: Obama-Israel ,U.S.-Israel ,Iran Strike

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