This is the House version of the annual bill to authorize funds for Defense Dept. programs, agencies, and accounts. While the bill itself does not address funding for Israel, the House Armed Services Committee report on the bill (110-652) specifies funding levels for U.S.-Israeli cooperative missile defense programs and makes pertinent recommendations and opinions, including that $54.8 m. should be authorized for continued development of “David’s Sling,” a short-range ballistic missile defense system jointly developed by the United States and Israel. While noting that Israel “faces a real and growing threat” from Syrian and Iranian ballistic missiles, the committee questions the necessity of developing a new anti-ballistic missile system to “engage ballistic missiles at longer ranges” as requested by Israel when existing U.S. missile technology could meet Israel’s needs. The report also urges Israel and the Dept. of Defense to review existing missile systems to determine the most cost-effective solution to Israeli missile defense needs, and to begin discussions about deploying an Army Navy/Transportable Radar Surveillance (AN/TPY-2) missile defense radar to increase its defense capabilities against ballistic missile attacks. According to the committee report, reduced funding for the U.S. missile defense system planned for deployment in Europe sends a “terrible signal” to Israel and other key U.S. allies reliant on U.S. commitments to missile defense.
See also: companion measure S. 3001 of 5/12/08; related measure H.R. 1585 of 3/20/07 and H.R. 4986 of 1/16/08 for FY2008 defense authorizations.
5/22/08 passed in House 384–23.