Foreign aid is an essential component of America's deeply rooted and ironclad commitment to the security and stability of our allies. We must not forget, however, that foreign aid comes in many shapes and forms. Since World War II, our country has maintained an immense network of Army, Navy and Air Force bases throughout Europe and in Japan. We have spent trillions of dollars to defend these allies from the expansionism of the former Soviet Union while they have built up economies that now rival and compete with our own. And we have sacrificed more than 100,000 American lives in that effort.
We have never, however, paid any such price for our alliance with Israel, despite the overwhelming number of Israel's enemies and the crushing burden of her defense needs. No American has ever fought a war to protect Israel and Israel has never asked us to. In contrast, Israel's vaunted Defense Forces and high tech industry help us to develop the most advanced weapons systems, which is the bulwark of our country's security. Israel constitutes - for the USA - the most effective battle-tested laboratory, which has dramatically upgraded hundreds of US military systems, which has provided the US defense industries with a unique competitive edge in the global competition, expanding our employment, export and research and development.
Israel moreover must spend 75% of her American aid in the United States, thus providing jobs and more tax revenues to our citizens. That's why I support the 10-year Memorandum of Understanding the U.S. and Israel signed in 2007, which provides a total of $30 billion in aid, or about $3 billion per year, to Israel. Those funds are included in the annual foreign aid bill, which I pledge to support when elected to Congress.
Our $3 billion per year of military aid for Israel's defense yields the greatest return of our foreign aid dollars and is our greatest bargain. As stated by the late Alexander Haig, Israel resembles the largest US aircraft carrier, which doesn't require a single US boot, can't be sunk, located in a most critical area for vital US interests, thus saving the US some $20 billion annually. US-Israel two-way street, mutually-beneficial, win-win ties have enhanced US national security and economy.