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United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. MARCHANT. Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong support of H.R. 4133, now S. 2165, the U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012. I am proud to be a cosponsor of this legislation and I urge all of my colleagues to join me in voting for this bill.

Israel continues to face unprecedented and unpredictable challenges from many of its neighbors. American support for Israel must remain unequivocally solid. This legislation is the latest important effort to continue and expand our deep mutual relationship. I am pleased that the House of Representatives is considering H.R. 4133 today, as it is of the utmost importance.

In addition to reaffirming our continued commitment to Israel, this legislation will provide Israel with many new military capabilities needed to defend itself against any threats. It is important for those who may wish to do Israel harm to know that they will not be successful. Specifically, this bill will provide Israel with new missile defense capabilities, mid-air refueling tankers, and specialized munitions. Each of these are key components for ensuring Israel's continued sovereign right to exist. In addition to these items this bill thoughtfully provides Israel with certain defense equipment that is being left behind by the withdrawal of American forces from Iraq.

In addition to the conveyance of equipment, this bill greatly increases our intelligence sharing operations and offers the Israeli Air Force aditional training resources in the United States. This is very important given the severely limited training grounds for the Israeli Air Force in its own country. I am especially pleased with the agreement for increased intelligence cooperation. This new level of intelligence collaboration will substantially assist our own intelligence services in keeping Americans safe. This legislation greatly benefits both countries; it is truly a remarkable partnership.

These efforts are paramount, but we must not rest. When we pass this legislation today, we must know that this is only the next step, and is not the final step in ensuring Israel's freedoms and right to exist. I remain committed to work with my colleagues for helping expand the US-Israeli partnership.

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