Biden administration bypasses Congress, approves arms sale to Israel

State Department issues export license for precision armaments despite attempt by left-wing Democrats to block the $735 million sale.

By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

The U.S. State Department has already issued export permits for the sale to Israel of advanced precision-guided weapons in a move that appears to have bypassed attempts by progressive Democrats to block the sale in Congress, Jewish Currents reported Tuesday.

A congressional staffer told the left-wing Jewish news website that the State Department approved the $735-million sale of smart bombs to Israel by granting an export license to the Boeing company. Boeing will provide its Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) and another laser-guided bomb similar to those used by the Israel Air Force in attacking military targets in Gaza this month.

The license allows Boeing to sell the weapons to Israel, despite a move in Congress led by Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib to block the sale.

Both Ocasio-Cortez and Tlaib are known for their radical anti-Israel stances and their criticism of the sale centered on the damage caused in Gaza, while failing to comment on the unprovoked rocket attack on Jerusalem by the Hamas terror group that sparked an 11-day military confrontation.

The anti-Israel faction within the Democratic Party claims that the weapons were used to kill Palestinian civilians, although on Tuesday the head of the United Nations body in charge of providing services to Gaza admitted that the precision weapons were indeed accurately used on military targets and reduced civilian casualties.

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“I’m not a military expert but I would not dispute that,” UNRWA director Matthias Schmale said in a Channel 12 interview. “I also have the impression that there is a huge sophistication in the way the Israeli military struck over the last 11 days” of the conflict.

Schmale said that although the attacks had “viciousness” and “ferocity,” he acknowledged that “they didn’t hit – with some exceptions – civilian targets.”

In Congress, Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib and Rep. Mark Pocan submitted a resolution last week calling for the sale to be blocked, while Senator Bernie Sanders filed a similar resolution in the Senate.

Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez have been loud in their condemnation of Israel, while ignoring Palestinian violence and the deliberate targeting of Israeli civilians by Hamas and the Islamic Jihad who fired over 4,300 rockets and mortars at Israeli towns and cities.

With both Houses of Congress solidly supporting Israel, the resolutions were likely to be defeated by a large majority, but the moves highlighted the split in the Democratic Party between the mainstream and the radical left that backs the Palestinians while ignoring the abuses by the Palestinian governments in Ramallah and Gaza City.