Cites the “sense of Congress” that “the United States should have an active program of ballistic missile defense cooperation with Israel, and should take steps to improve the coordination, interoperability, and integration of United States and Israeli missile defense capabilities, and to enhance the capability of both nations to defend against ballistic missile threats present in the Middle East region.” To that end, it mandates a report by the secy. of defense to the Congressional defense committees on aspects of U.S.-Israeli cooperation in the field of missile defense.
Arrow missile defense system: authorizes the amount requested by the president of $73.5m on the Arrow missile defense system jointly developed by the U.S. and Israel. An additional $205m was added and passed in the House version through amendments by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) to integrate more fully the ballistic defense capabilities of the U.S. and Israel for a total of $278.5m for the Arrow system. Of that amount, $25m is set aside to accelerate co-production of the Arrow missile defense system and integrate it more fully with ballistic missile defense systems in the US; $45m is designated to continue development of “David’s Sling” weapon system, a short-range missile defense sytem; $135m is designated for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) “which would provide Israel with a follow-on missile defense system of greater performance than the current Arrow system and provide a capability which is already fully integrated with the ballistic missile defense system of the United States.” This increase in spending for U.S.-Israel missile defense integration comes at a time when the House cut out of the same bill $764m from $8.9b the administration requested for missile defense spending in 2008.
An amendment to this bill was submitted (7/16/07) and approved (9/26/06 by unanimous consent) in the Senate, SA. 2251, Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), 20 cosponsors, entitled the “Justice for Marines and Other Victims of State-Sponsored Terrorism Act.” It is identical to S. 1944 on 8/2/07 (see there for details).
Note: Authorization bills set ceiling spending limits for particular programs or accounts but do not appropriate actual funds.
Vetoed by President Bush 12/28/07 due to clause in SA 2251 that would permit revival of lawsuits against the Iraq government (12/14/07 conference report passed in Senate 90-3; 12/12/07 conference report passed in House 370-49).