A report out this week that United States military troops are headed to Israel have some concerned. But this isn't something new. Through the years of 1979 - 1982 the United States Army Corps of Engineers built bases on the ground in the Negev in Israel. Military training, exchanges of equipment, intelligence and more continued through the years.
In 2008 the US military opened a radar facility, the top-secret X-band radar, on a mountain top in the Negev desert which would provide an early warning system if Iran launches a missile attack on Israel and for the first time in its 60-year history Israel had a permanent foreign military base on its soil. Not all Israelis were happy.
Israeli military sources say that [Ehud] Barak requested the radar from U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates in July, after U.S. requests to station such a system in Turkey and Jordan were rejected. Barak was eager to acquire the advantage of the early warning that the system would provide in the event of a possible Iranian attack.
(Image: Cheyenne Mountain's NORAD, the central collection and coordination center for a worldwide system of satellites, radars, and other early warning systems watching for threats to North American security from both aircraft and ballistic missiles. George Steinmetz / Corbi) (Time)
... right now, the US military is preparing to send thousands of US troops, along with US Naval anti-missile ships and accompanying support personnel, to Israel. It took forever to find a second source for confirmation of this story and both relatively mainstream media outlets are in Israel. With one source saying the military deployment and corresponding exercises are to occur in January, the source providing most of the details suggests it will occur later this spring.
Calling it not just an “exercise”, but a “deployment”, the Jerusalem Post quotes US Lt.-Gen Frank Gorenc, Commander of the US Third Air Force based in Germany. The US Commander visited Israel two weeks ago to confirm details for “the deployment of several thousand American soldiers to Israel.” In an effort to respond to recent Iranian threats and counter-threats, Israel announced the largest ever missile defense exercise in its history. Now, it’s reported that the US military, including the US Navy, will be stationed throughout Israel, also taking part.
Also confirming the upcoming US-Israeli military missile exercises is JTA.org - 'global news service of the Jewish people'. In their account, they report, 'Last week, plans for Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, to visit Israel in January were leaked to Israeli media; his visit likely will coincide with the largest-ever joint U.S.-Israel anti-missile exercise'.
While American troops will be stationed in Israel for an unspecified amount of time, Israeli military personnel will be added to EUCOM in Germany. EUCOM stands for United States European Command.
In preparation for anticipated Iranian missile attacks upon Israel, the US is reportedly bringing its THAAD, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, and ship-based Aegis ballistic missile systems to Israel. The US forces will join Israeli missile defense systems like the Patriot and Arrow. The deployment comes with “the ultimate goal of establishing joint task forces in the event of a large-scale conflict in the Middle East”. (continue reading at WhiteOut Press)