Israel and the U.S.
U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis became President Trump’s first cabinet member to visit Israel. During his time in the Jewish State, Secretary Mattis meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, and Chief of the General Staff Gadi Eizenkot. Defense News said Mattis delivered a “nuanced message” to his Israeli counterparts, especially that Iran continues to destabilize the region through its support for terrorism and proxy conflicts, but that the Islamic Republic has largely abided by its nuclear agreement with the U.S.
A senior IDF official told Israeli media that said the IDF received advance warning of the U.S. strike on Syria’s al-Shayrat Airbase about two hours before the attack.
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) took delivery of three Lockheed Martin F-35 Adir fighter jets earlier this month, added to two already in operation. All five of the fifth-generation fighters are based at Nevatim Air Base.
Germany agreed to cancel a $1.5 billion deal for three Dolphin-class submarines if Israeli authorities find sufficient evidence of corruption. The manufacturer ThyssenKrupp is suspected of bribing foreign officials and ignoring conflicts of interest.
The IAF received two cargo planes at Nevatim Air Base earlier this month. The planes, an upgraded Karnaf C-130 Hercules and a Shimshon C-130J Super Hercules, will be integrated into the IAF’s tactical transport division.
Israeli Military Technology
Senior executives confirmed talks between Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and Airbus to provide the European plane maker with aerostructures and composite materials made in Israel. IAI already proves parts used in Boeing 787 and 777.
IAI will produce a new front-engined variant of its Panther short-range UAV following design flaws identified after a hard landing last year. The updated drone, which will keep the Panther’s hybrid electric and combustion proportion systems, will have greater wing efficiency.
Nearly two dozen congressmen have called for the Trump Administration to approve the sale of U.S.-made Reaper drones to Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.
The Pentagon awarded Raytheon a $65 million contract to provide Advanced Medium Range air-to-air-missile (AMRAAM) to Turkey and other allies. Raytheon will also supply AIM-9X Sidewinder Block II tactical missiles to Israel, Kuwait and other allies in a deal valued at $79 million.