US Congress proposes anti-Iran alliance

US representatives want Israel and nine Arab states to build joint air defenses against Iran, but it’s unclear if they were even asked Read Full Article at

US Congress proposes anti-Iran alliance
11 Jun, 2022 00:49 HomeWorld News

US Congress proposes anti-Iran alliance

Lawmakers propose integrated air defense net for Israel and nine Arab countries

The US should support Israel and nine Arab countries establishing an integrated air defense system to counter Iran, according to a proposal by ten members of Congress from both parties made public this week.

Dubbed the Deterring Enemy Forces and Enabling National Defenses (DEFEND) Act, the bill would authorize the Pentagon to cooperate with Israel, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan, Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to develop and deploy integrated air and missile defenses against alleged threat posed by Iran.

The bill enjoys the support of ten lawmakers from both political parties. Democrats Jacky Rosen (Nevada), Cory Booker (New Jersey), Joni Ernst (Iowa) and James Lankford (Oklahoma) have introduced it in the Senate. Meanwhile, Democrats Brad Schneider (Illinois), David Trone (Maryland), Jimmy Panetta (California) joined forces with Republicans Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Washington), Ann Wagner (Missouri) and Don Bacon (Nebraska) in the House of Representatives.

“US leadership, in developing integrated air and missile defense, would provide essential security, stability, and a unified defense to the region. The DEFEND Act is a prime example of the important, bipartisan, bicameral work that Congress must prioritize in our pursuit of regional peace and stability,” Rep. Schneider (D-Illinois) said in the announcement.

One possible wrinkle in the plan is that Israel currently has formal ties with only half the countries that would be involved. It is also unclear whether any of the listed countries are on board with the effort, or if the US lawmakers even consulted them, according to the Times of Israel.

The idea of a joint air defense system was reportedly floated at the meeting of foreign ministers from Israel, Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco, and the UAE with the US secretary of state last March. It was also reportedly brought up in US-Saudi talks, which the State Department hopes will lead to Riyadh also joining the Abraham Accords.