Geopolitical Implications of Israel’s Substantial US Foreign Aid

Israel is a primary recipient of US foreign aid, despite its wealth and being the fourth most successful economy in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. This raises questions about whether Israel is a proxy for US imperialism in the Middle East and if American aid to Israel benefits other constituencies beyond the defense industry.

The Middle East is a key reservoir of energy resources and contains trade routes of global importance, making it a watchdog for America’s interests. Empowering Israel to deter Arab radicalism allows America to exert greater influence by weakening Arab states. Scholars believe that Israel’s strength protects friendly Arab states, ensuring easier access to oil from the Middle East. However, Elizabeth Stephens undercuts the argument that America funds Israel for strategic purposes.

Stephens explains that despite US-Israeli cooperation during the 1970 Jordan crisis, collaborations with Israel can adversely affect America’s relations with amicable Arab states. As a result, America refrained from using Israeli troops in conflicts with Arab states, as demonstrated during the 1990-91 Gulf War. She highlights deficits in the economic argument for supporting Israel and concludes that such sponsorship poses a financial liability to America.

Stephens identifies domestic politics as the prime factor engendering support for Israel, with the American Jewish lobby and pro-Israel lobby wielding enormous influence on American foreign policy in the Middle East. This high level of public support for Israel and popular distrust of Arab states has set the tone for America’s Middle East policy.

Israel’s relationship with America has given it unique privileges, making it a lesser power extracting tribute from the American empire. However, intellectuals argue that America is using foreign aid as a tool of manipulation, with new provisions requiring Israel to spend aid in the US. This policy change will cost $1.3 billion for Israel, gut twenty-two thousand jobs, and make Israel reliant on American technology. Critics believe that greater dependence on American technology curtails Israel’s ability to innovate, making it susceptible to aggressive neighbors.

Caroline B. Glick highlights that receiving aid forces Israel to sacrifice national goals to appease America. The IDF’s support for the U.S.-dictated maritime border agreement with Hezbollah-controlled Lebanon last October is a strategic disaster for Israel, giving Hezbollah a share of the Mediterranean gas industry, limiting Israel’s offensive options, and threatening Israel’s northern coast from the sea.

There is a growing consensus that America should cut aid to Israel, but this cannot be achieved without confronting the defense industry. Military spending is crippling investments in education, healthcare, and infrastructure, and spending in areas such as healthcare, education, and infrastructure would create more jobs. Addressing issues raised by the current conflict is crucial to dissuade people from believing nonsense. The myth that modern-day Palestinians are indigenous to Palestine is absurd, as contemporary Palestinians are not the descendants of the Philistines who occupied Gaza, and the Philistines were not indigenous to the region.

Palestine, a place with a long history, has a modern-day Palestinian identity that is largely a result of migratory people rather than its original inhabitants. The idea of Palestine was first proposed by the Peel Commission in 1937, but local leader Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi argued that it was a term invented by Zionists. Historian Daniel Pipes also argued that Palestinian identity emerged in response to Zionism, as the Arabs would have continued to view the area as a province of Greater Syria without another people viewing British Palestine as their national home.

While sympathizing with Palestinians is understandable, it is important to recognize that Hamas is a terrorist group known for using its people as human shields to blackbalk Israel. To neutralize propaganda campaigns, facts must be presented before these lies become official history.

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