WASHINGTON (Dispatches) – U.S. House Democrats have removed $1 billion in military funding for Israel from a major budget bill after objections from liberal lawmakers, with the Democratic leadership promising to introduce a stand-alone bill later this week to fund the occupying regime’s Iron Dome missile system.
Tuesday’s decision comes after the House debated legislation to fund the federal government through December 3 and raise the nation’s borrowing limit.
Some members of Democrat’s Congressional Progressive Caucus objected to a provision in a stopgap spending bill to provide the additional funding so the Zionist regime can replenish its aerial missile system.
The call to remove the Iron Dome funding from the spending bill was spearheaded by Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Betty McCollum, successfully mediated by Rosa DeLauro, according to a Congress member who spoke to The Times of Israel.
Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Pramila Jayapal also threatened to vote against the bill if the Iron Dome funding was included, a Congressional aide told the paper.
The plan has drawn strong condemnation from the Republicans, with House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy accusing the Democrats of capitulating to “the anti-Semitic influence of their radical members”.
Pro-Zionist Republican senator, Ted Cruz, called the decision “an outrage and a disgrace” and urged the Democratic rank-and-file to denounce the party’s leadership.
“Tragic. Dem leadership surrenders to the anti-Semitic Left. They hate Israel so much that Dems are stripping $1 BILLION in funding for Iron Dome.
“Will any Dems have the courage to denounce?” the conservative from Texas tweeted.
The drama has also drawn heat from some fellow Democrats.
Dean Phillips, a Jewish Democratic congressman from Minnesota, told CNN that he was “incredulous” that the funding for Iron Dome had been stripped “at the request of some progressive Democrats”.
Some liberal Democrats objected to U.S.-Israel policy this year, including citing the many Palestinian casualties after the occupying regime attacked Gaza in May.
Palestinian resistance groups responded with unprecedented volleys of rockets that
caught Iron Dome interceptors napping in many cases.
The Iron Dome is a short-range anti-rocket system that uses targeting systems and radar to detect projectiles. Once located, it then fires Tamir interceptor missiles at the projectiles.
Last month, a U.S. report said the U.S. military had decided not to purchase Israel’s Iron Dome after testing the purported all-weather aerial missile system earlier this summer.
According to the Defense News website, Washington opted for Enduring Shield system developed by American company Dynetics after a shoot-off and comparative tests between the two systems at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
The Zionist war ministry and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems – the primary developer and manufacturer of the Iron Dome system -- told Israeli newspaper the Jerusalem Post that they would not be commenting on the report.
The U.S. decision was a significant setback for the Zionist military which has always tried to sell off the alleged capabilities of the system despite failing repeatedly against projectiles fired from Gaza.
Under a 2019 agreement, the U.S. army purchased two off-the-shelf Iron Dome batteries from the occupying regime of Israel.
The first battery was reportedly delivered in late 2020 and the second in January 2021 for a cost of $373 million.
In March this year, the U.S. army announced it was reconsidering plans to buy additional Iron Dome systems because they could not be integrated into American-made air missile systems.
“We believe we cannot integrate them into our air-defense system based upon some interoperability challenges, some cyber challenges and some other challenges,” U.S. General Mike Murray, commander of Army Futures Command, said at the time.
Washington is said to have contributed $1.6 billion in funding Israel’s Iron Dome system since 2011, and the American defense company Raytheon is a partner with Rafael in the production of Iron Dome subsystem parts that are produced throughout 15 states in the United States.
Nevertheless, one of the challenges cited in the U.S.’s procurement of more Iron Dome batteries was Israel’s reluctance to share the system’s source code, which would be necessary in order to integrate it with other American missile systems.
Last month, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin had told the occupying regime’s visiting prime minister Naftali Bennett that the Biden administration was working to fulfill Israel’s request for $1 billion in emergency funding to replenish the Iron Dome.