The military exercise, participated by Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Bahrain and Sudan, will last till Thursday, said a statement released by the Egyptian forces.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Friday that Israel’s authorization of the United States‘ sale of F-35 fighter jets to the United Arab Emirates was not part of the peace deal signed between the nations in Washington, and that this came about through discussions held by Defense Minister Benny Gantz with the Pentagon.
Meanwhile, in a statement of his own, Gantz claimed that negotiations on the sale of arms were known to some Israeli officials, but were kept hidden from him and Israel’s security establishment.
They are the most boring and low-priority reports of all. Most Israeli media outlets don’t even bother to post them. They are like a bus plunging into a river in Nepal, like victims in Chad’s civil war or trapped mine workers in Siberia.
The same applies to the victims of yet another Israeli air strike in Syria. Who’s heard about it? Who knows about it, who cares? Who has the energy to look into it?
The UAE and Israel wish to express their gratitude for the overwhelmingly positive response to this historic accord from governments around the world. They are especially grateful to President Donald J. Trump for his leadership and to his administration for the critical role it has played in achieving this diplomatic breakthrough. They are also greatly encouraged by the broad bipartisan support for this breakthrough from the United States Congress.
“Israeli missiles bombed the vicinity of Izraa, the Namer Brigade, the Qarafa Brigade, and Tal Mahajah in the northeastern countryside of Daraa, where the Lebanese Hezbollah forces are present,” the organization said in a statement.
The report did not specifically identify the foreign fighters as members of Hezbollah.
The first official flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) landed Monday in Abu Dhabi, carrying an Israeli-American delegation to advance the landmark peace agreement between the two Middle Eastern states.
Leading the historic occasion, special White House advisor Jared Kushner addressed reporters at the airport promptly after landing, as Arab media televised the event under the title “Message of Peace.”
Kushner, O’Brien, US Special Representative for International Negotiations Avi Berkowitz and US Iran envoy Brian Hook, together with an Israeli delegation led by National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat, are set to take the first-ever direct flight from Israel to the UAE on Monday, on an El Al plane bearing the word “peace” in Arabic, Hebrew and English in honor of the historic moment.
However, the UAE decided to cancel the public vent in a bid to protest the statements on the prospect of the US selling advanced F-35 stealth fighter jets to the Gulf Kingdom coming from the Israeli security establishment.
Earlier reports in the Israeli media suggested that the sales of F-35s and other advanced military hardware to the UAE came as a secret clasue in the accord to normalize the ties.
“The whole system is being upended by this. It’s security recklessness. Netanyahu knew where Trump was going with the arms deal and didn’t tell us a thing,” an Israeli defense source told Haaretz on Thursday.
“Both the Ben Shabbat-Norkin conversation and the Netanyahu-Gantz meeting were part of the prime minister’s feelers without him showing his cards. We suspect that Netanyahu gave Trump a wink. The result will be that if the United States wishes, it will sell those planes, and with them offensive drones and other advanced weapons. It will happen without any prior professional discussion in Israel.
In light of all this and more, one may certainly imagine a scenario in which, very quietly, at night before he goes to sleep, Netanyahu is secretly waiting for Joe Biden. The Democratic presidential nominee and his vice-presidential candidate, Kamala Harris, are much easier for AIPAC to maneuver and have a proven record of support for Israel.
True, they won’t pull a gesture out of their sleeve like a new embassy, and it’s also true that there is a wing of the Democratic Party that is very critical of Israel, partially because Netanyahu’s backing of Trump spurred opposition. But they are much more conventional, predictable and easier to work with.
But Netanyahu said Israel would oppose such a deal, as the Israeli military must maintain superiority in the region.
The peace agreement “did not include Israel’s consent to any arms deal whatsoever between the United States and the UAE,” according to a statement from Netanyahu’s office.
“The U.S. made clear to Israel that it will always ensure to protect Israel’s qualitative edge.”
Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Tuesday warned that the proliferation of the F-35 fighter jet was “not good for Israel,” following reports that the United States would sell the advanced aircraft to the United Arab Emirates.
“It’s not good for Israel that the plane is going around in other places. We need to talk to the Emiratis, to the Americans, and make sure that our security interests are being upheld,” Gantz told reporters in a press conference.
On Wednesday, Channel 13 reported that Meir Ben-Shabbat, chief of Israel’s National Securit Council, approached Israeli Air Force head Amikam Norkin in June for a review of Israel’s position on such a sale.
According to the report, the move came in a breach of the command chain, as Ben-Shabbat was supposed to first speak with Defense Minister and Alternative Prime Minister Benny Gantz, whom Netanyahu kept in the dark in regards to the upcoming deal with the UAE.
The UAE official added that Israel, the United States and the Emiratis agreed to bolster the military capabilities of the Gulf kingdom as an integral part of the peace deal.
Israel procured its first two F-35 jets in 2016 and has reportedly been using the aircraft in some of the strikes in Syria, becoming the first nation to deploy the jets in combat.
As of today, the Jewish state is also the only Middle East nation to have the jet in its air force, with Turkey booted out of the F-35 program in 2019.
In an interview with Sky News Arabia, the leading television channel in the UAE, Netanyahu was asked how the normalization deal between the UAE and Israel will serve regional peace. He answered: „Vastly. The deal connects the UAE with Israel; both of them are advanced democracies and their societies are advanced.“ Netanyahu uploaded a video of the interview to his Twitter account, and deleted it shortly after.
Why it matters: U.S. law requires the administration to consult with Israel before selling arms to any Arab country to ensure Israel can maintain its qualitative military edge. It must also report to Congress on the matter.
This morning, Israel’s Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper reported that the normalization deal included a secret clause, approved by Netanyahu, about F-35 sales to the UAE.
The purchase would cost Poland 4.6 billion U.S. dollars, according to the government.
In a statement, Lockheed Martin, the prime contractor on the F-35 program, said, “This is a government-to-government matter, and as always, we are following official U.S. Government guidance as it relates to delivery of the F-35 to Turkey and the export of goods from the Turkish supply chain.”
Die Befürchtung der USA: Durch den parallelen Einsatz russischer- und NATO-Systeme könnte Moskau an wichtige Details über die Fähigkeiten der F-35-Kampfjets kommen. Das sei nicht hinnehmbar.
U.S. arms sales to foreign governments rose 13 percent to $192.3 billion in the year ended Sept. 30, the U.S. State Department said in November. F-35A fighters are estimated to cost $85 million each.
Japan last year unveiled a plan to buy 45 more F-35 stealth fighters, including some B variants, worth about $4 billion, adding to the 42 jets it has already ordered.
Here’s a quick rundown of the major players to date, and how many F-35s they’re planning to buy:
Australia: 72 F-35As
Belgium: No decision yet made
Canada: 65 F-35As planned, but may buy Boeing (NYSE:BA) F-18s instead
Denmark: 27 F-35As
Israel: 50 F-35As
Italy: 60 F-35As, 30 F-35Bs
Japan: 42 F-35As
Netherlands: Up to 37 planned, but only 8 authorized so far
Norway: 52 F-35As planned, but only 22 authorized so far
South Korea: 40 F-35As
Turkey: 100 F-35As
United Kingdom: 138 F-35Bs
United States: 1,763 F-35As, 353 F-35Bs, and 327 F-35Cs
An RAF source told The Express: This situation obviously has to be rectified before the plane enters operational service.‘
The source also told the paper that defence secretary Gavin Williamson and RAF Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen have always known about the issue.
Radars work in the microwave frequency range, which can be absorbed by MWNTs. Applying the MWNTs to the aircraft would cause the radar to be absorbed and therefore seem to have a smaller radar cross-section. One such application could be to paint the nanotubes onto the plane. Recently there has been some work done at the University of Michigan regarding carbon nanotubes usefulness as stealth technology on aircraft. It has been found that in addition to the radar absorbing properties, the nanotubes neither reflect nor scatter visible light, making it essentially invisible at night, much like painting current stealth aircraft black except much more effective. Current limitations in manufacturing, however, mean that current production of nanotube-coated aircraft is not possible. One theory to overcome these current limitations is to cover small particles with the nanotubes and suspend the nanotube-covered particles in a medium such as paint, which can then be applied to a surface, like a stealth aircraft.
In 2010, Lockheed Martin Corporation applied for a patent for just such a CNT based radar absorbent material, which was reassigned and granted to Applied NanoStructure Solutions, LLC in 2012. Some believe that this material is incorporated in the F-35 Lightning II
Meanwhile, the same carbon nanotube reinforced polymer (CNRP) material is being considered to replace about 100 components made with other composites or metals throughout the F-35’s airframe, he said.
The shift to CNRP as an airframe material has been anticipated ever since carbon nanotubes were discovered in 1991.
The home base of the F-35s is RAF Marham in Norfolk and they will be deployed to RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus…
The UK currently owns 17 of the multimillion-pound aircraft, and Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson pledged that a total of 138 will be bought.
“The department is not going to comment on proposed legislation,” he said. “Until something changes, they are going to continue their flight academics at Luke.”
A Pentagon official confirmed to Rudaw’s Namo Abdulla that the ceremony to deliver the first jet to Turkey will go ahead as planned in Fort Worth Texas on Thursday. Turkish pilots are already in the US for training, the official added.
The F-35 fighter jet’s advanced stealth technology allows it to evade even sophisticated anti-aircraft systems, according to Lockheed Martin.
First F-35 warplanes are expected to be delivered to Turkey on June 21.
(19.4.2018) Developed by Lockheed Martin, the F-35B Lightning II is a multi-role fighter aircraft that is capable of carrying out a wide range of operations.
It is the first aircraft in the world to integrate radar-evading stealth technology with supersonic speeds, as well as short take-off and landing capability.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is also seeking to procure the F-35 jets, and talks are making an important progress, as stated by officials who refused to be named.