Archive for the ‘Technology transfer’ category

US-Israel security interests converge

April 28, 2017

US-Israel security interests converge, Israel Hayom, Yoram Ettinger, April 28, 2017

In 2017, the national security interests of the U.S. and Israel have converged in ‎an unprecedented manner in response to anti-U.S. ‎Islamic terrorism; declining European posture of deterrence; drastic cuts in ‎the U.S. defense budget; an increasingly unpredictable, dangerous globe; ‎Israel’s surge of military and commercial capabilities and U.S.-Israel shared ‎values. ‎

Contrary to conventional wisdom — and traditional State Department policy — ‎U.S.-Israel and U.S.-Arab relations are not a zero-sum game. This is ‎currently demonstrated by enhanced U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation, ‎concurrently with expanded security cooperation between Israel and Egypt, ‎Jordan, Saudi Arabia and other pro-U.S. Arab countries, as well as stronger ‎cooperation between the U.S. and those same Arab countries. Unlike the ‎simplistic view of the Middle East, Arab policymakers are well aware of their ‎priorities, especially when the radical Islamic machete is at their throats. They ‎are consumed by internal and external intra-Muslim, intra-Arab violence, which ‎have dominated the Arab agenda, prior to — and irrespective of — the ‎Palestinian issue, which has never been a core cause of regional turbulence, a ‎crown-jewel of Arab policymaking or the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict. ‎

Israel’s posture as a unique ally of the U.S. — in the Middle East and beyond — ‎has surged since the demise of the USSR, which transformed the bipolar ‎globe into a multipolar arena of conflicts, replete with highly unpredictable, ‎less controllable and more dangerous tactical threats. Israel possesses proven ‎tactical capabilities in face of such threats. Thus, Israel provides a tailwind to the ‎U.S. in the pursuit of three critical challenges that impact U.S. national security, significantly transcending the scope of the Arab-‎Israeli conflict and the Palestinian issue: ‎

‎1. To constrain/neutralize the ayatollahs of Iran, who relentlessly aspire to ‎achieve nuclear capability in order to remove the ‎U.S. from the Persian Gulf, dominate the Muslim world, and subordinate the American “modern-day Crusaders.”‎

‎2. To defeat global Islamic terrorism, which aims to topple all pro-U.S. Arab ‎regimes, expand the abode of Muslim believers and crash the abode of non-Muslim “‎infidels” in the Middle East and beyond.‎

‎3. To bolster the stability of pro-U.S. Arab regimes, which are lethally ‎threatened by the ayatollahs and other sources of Islamic terrorism.

Moreover, Israel has been the only effective regional power to check the North ‎Korean incursion into the Middle East. For instance, on Sept. 6, 2007, the ‎Israeli Air Force destroyed Syria’s nuclear site, built mostly with the support of ‎Iran and North Korea, sparing the U.S. and the globe the wrath of a ruthless, ‎nuclear Assad regime. ‎

While Israel is generally portrayed as a supplicant expecting the U.S. to extend a ‎helping hand, Adm. (ret.) James G. Stavridis, a former NATO supreme commander, ‎currently the dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts ‎University, says otherwise. He maintains that Israel is not a supplicant but ‎rather a unique geostrategic partner, extending the strategic hand of the U.S. ‎through a mutually beneficial, highly productive ‎relationship with the U.S.

On Jan. 5, 2017, Stavridis wrote: “Our ‎best military partner in the region, by far, is Israel … as we stand together ‎facing the challenges of the Middle East. … Israeli intelligence gathering is ‎superb. … A second zone of potentially enhanced cooperation is in technology ‎and innovation. … In addition to missile defense, doing more together in ‎advanced avionics (as we did with the F-15), miniaturization (like Israel’s small ‎airborne-warning aircraft) and the production of low-cost battlefield unmanned ‎vehicles (both air and surface) would yield strong results. … We should up our ‎game in terms of intelligence cooperation. [The Israeli intelligence ‎services] of our more segregated sectors on a wide range of trends, including the disintegration of Syria, the events in Egypt and the military and nuclear ‎capability of Iran. … Setting up a joint special-forces training and innovation ‎center for special operations in Israel would be powerful. … It truly is a case ‎of two nations that are inarguably stronger together.” ‎

Unlike other major U.S. allies in Europe, the Far East, Africa and the Middle East, ‎Israel does not require U.S. military personnel and bases in order to produce an ‎exceptionally high added value to the annual U.S. investment in — and not ‎‎”foreign aid” to — Israel’s military posture.

For example, the plant manager of Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer of the ‎F-16 and F-35 fighter planes, told me during a visit to the plant in Fort Worth, Texas: “The ‎value of the flow of lessons derived from Israel’s operation, maintenance and ‎repairs of the F-16 has yielded hundreds of upgrades, producing a mega-‎billion-dollar bonanza for Lockheed-Martin, improving research and ‎development, increasing exports and expanding employment.”

A similar ‎added value has benefitted McDonnell Douglas, the manufacturer of the F-15 fighter plane ‎in Berkeley, Missouri, as well as hundreds of U.S. defense manufacturers, ‎whose products are operated by Israel. The Jewish state — the most ‎predictable, stable, effective, reliable and unconditional ally of the U.S. — has ‎become the most cost-effective, battle-tested laboratory of the U.S. defense ‎industry. ‎

According to a former U.S. Air Force intelligence chief, Gen. George Keegan: ‎‎”I could not have procured the intelligence [provided by Israel on Soviet Air ‎Force capabilities, new Soviet weapons, electronics and jamming devices] with ‎five CIAs. … The ability of the U.S. Air Force in particular, and the Army in ‎general, to defend NATO owes more to the Israeli intelligence input than it ‎does to any other single source of intelligence.” The former chairman of the ‎Senate Appropriations Committee, Sen. Daniel Inouye, revealed that “Israel ‎provided the U.S. [operational lessons and intelligence on advanced Soviet ‎ground-to-air missiles] that would have cost the U.S. billions of dollars to find ‎out.”

On Oct. 28, 1991, in the aftermath of the First Gulf War, then-Defense ‎Secretary Dick Cheney stated: “There were many times during the course of ‎the buildup in the Gulf, and subsequent conflict, that I gave thanks for the ‎bold and dramatic action that had been taken some 10 years before [when ‎Israel destroyed Iraq’s nuclear reactor at Osirak].” The destruction of Iraq’s ‎nuclear capabilities in 1981 spared the U.S. a nuclear confrontation in 1991.

An Israel-like ally in the Persian Gulf would have dramatically minimized U.S. ‎military involvement in Persian Gulf conflicts, and drastically reduced the ‎monthly, mega-billion dollar cost of U.S. military units and bases in the ‎Gulf and Indian Ocean, as is the current Israel-effect in the eastern flank of ‎the Mediterranean.‎

Yoram Ettinger is a former ambassador and head of Second Thought: A U.S.-Israel Initiative.

How Hillary Helped U.S. Investors Fund Russian Research for Military Uses

August 1, 2016

How Hillary Helped U.S. Investors Fund Russian Research for Military Uses, Power LinePaul Mirengoff, August 1, 2016

Clinton is responsible for helping create a Russian “Silicon Valley” that has enabled the Kremlin to boost its military and surveillance capacity. And let’s not forget her role in enabling Russia to gain control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States.

Russia has been well-served by Hillary Clinton’s cluelessness and greed.

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Clinton is responsible for helping create a Russian “Silicon Valley” that has enabled the Kremlin to boost its military and surveillance capacity. And let’s not forget her role in enabling Russia to gain control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States.

Russia has been well-served by Hillary Clinton’s cluelessness and greed.

Russia has become a major issue in this year’s presidential campaign. It should have been a major issue in the last one, but President Obama countered Mitt Romney’s attempt to inject Russia into the debate with his sophomoric quip that “the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.” Whether it’s ISIS (aka “the jayvee”) or Russia, Obama sure knows how to spot trouble.

This year, both parties agree that Russia poses a serious threat. In this respect, and perhaps only this respect, the 2016 campaign is an improvement over last time.

With attention now being paid, Peter Schweizer’s latest piece on the Clinton Foundation will perhaps make a mark. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Schweizer shows that under Hillary Clinton’s leadership, “the State Department recruited and facilitated the commitment of billions of American dollars in the creation of a Russian ‘Silicon Valley’ whose technological innovations include Russian hypersonic cruise-missile engines, radar surveillance equipment, and vehicles capable of delivering airborne Russian troops.”

Here’s how it happened. As part of Hillary’s Russian reset, the Kremlin committed $5 billion over three years to fund Skolkovo, an “innovation city” on the outskirts of Moscow billed as Russia’s version of Silicon Valley. Clinton’s State Department worked aggressively to attract U.S. investment partners and helped the Russian State Investment Fund identify American tech companies worthy of Russian investment.

Dozens of U.S. tech firms, including top Clinton Foundation donors like Google, Intel, and Cisco, then made major financial contributions to Skolkovo. According to Schweizer, by 2012 Skolkovo had 28 Russian, American and European “Key Partners.” Of the 28 key partners, 17 have made financial commitments to the Clinton Foundation, totaling tens of millions of dollars, or sponsored speeches by Bill Clinton.

Russian money also flowed to the Clinton Foundation. Schweizer reports that Andrey Vavilov, the chairman of SuperOx, part of Skolkovo’s nuclear-research cluster, donated between $10,000 and $25,000. Skolkovo Foundation chief and billionaire Putin confidant Viktor Vekselberg also donated through his company.

As the Slolkovo project gained momentum, U.S. defense experts became alarmed. The U.S. Army Foreign Military Studies Program at Fort Leavenworth warned:

The Skolkovo Foundation has, in fact, been involved in defense-related activities since December 2011, when it approved the first weapons-related project—the development of a hypersonic cruise missile engine. . . . Not all of the center’s efforts are civilian in nature.

Similarly, Lucia Ziobro, an assistant special agent at the FBI’s Boston office, stated that “the FBI believes the true motives of the Russian partners, who are often funded by their government, is to gain access to classified, sensitive, and emerging technology. . .” Ziobro added, “The [Skolkovo] foundation may be a means for the Russian government to access our nation’s sensitive or classified research development facilities and dual-use technologies with military and commercial application.”

Hillary Clinton knew about the dual-use problem while she was Secretary of State. Schweizer notes that a State Department cable sent to then-Secretary Clinton (and obtained via WikiLeaks) mentioned possible “dual use and export control concerns” related to research and development technology ventures with Moscow.

Clinton ignored the problem. Was this due to the millions of dollars in Clinton Foundation donations by Skolkovo’s key partners?

Only Hillary knows for sure. But the burden should be on her to provide a more convincing explanation.

In any event, Clinton is responsible for helping create a Russian “Silicon Valley” that has enabled the Kremlin to boost its military and surveillance capacity. And let’s not forget her role in enabling Russia to gain control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States.

Russia has been well-served by Hillary Clinton’s cluelessness and greed.