Home Alliance Tracker Alliance Tracker: November 12, 2019

Alliance Tracker: November 12, 2019

Rafael showcase its Drone Dome.


Following U.S. pressure to limit Chinese investments into Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced the establishment of a special advisory committee inside the Finance Ministry to vet foreign investments with national security implications. Other agencies, including the Foreign, Economic, and Defense ministries, will comprise the committee. 

The United States, Greece, Germany, and Italy sent fighter jets, including the F-35s, to Israel for 12 days of Blue Flag exercises. The drill includes more than 1,000 personnel from the five nations and simulates air-to-air combat and surface-to-air missile threats.  

Israel’s High Court of Justice rejected a request to stop the extradition of Aleksey Burkov, a Russian computer hacker, to the United States. Israeli authorities arrested Burkov at the request of Interpol in 2015 after the U.S. government accused him of stealing credit card numbers and millions of dollars from consumers.  

The Israel Defense Forces announced it had promoted the first woman to chief intelligence officer for the military’s Central Command, which is responsible for securing the West Bank. The officer, whose name was not released, holds the rank of colonel. 

Russian news media reported that Moscow obtained two David’s Sling missile interceptors that landed in Syria last year. Military leaders in Israel worry that the Russians may be able to reverse engineer the high-tech components, which were jointly developed with the United States. 

Foreign Military Sales

Thailand’s Navy agreed to buy a counter-drone system from Skylock in a deal reportedly worth $4.29 million. While details of the purchase were not disclosed, the Avnon group subsidiary will deliver the system in the next eight months. 

Rafael will showcase its Drone Dome counter-UAV system at the DSEI {Should this first reference be spelled out?} Japan security conference later this month. Drone Guard uses radar to identify threats before either jamming the attackers’  communications or launching a kinetic attack against the intruders. The Japanese government plans to deploy the system at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. 

The Portuguese Defense Ministry awarded Elbit a $50 million contract to supply electronic warfare suites and logistics to its newly acquired KC-390s. Over the next five years, the company will install infrared sensors and countermeasure systems on the multi-mission aircraft.

The Pentagon will contract with Rafael to provide Litening electro-optic systems on U.S. fighter jets in conjunction with Northrop Grumman as part of a deal worth $57 million. 

Regional Developments

The U.S. State Department will withhold $105 million in security assistance to Lebanon after Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri resigned. The agency refused to comment on the reason behind its decision, but concern has grown in Washington over Hezbollah’s rising military influence in the country. 

U.S. National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien announced that President Trump will confront Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan over Ankara’s purchase of the S-400 air defense missile system from Russia during his visit to Washington late this week. Washington revoked Turkey’s access to the F-35 program in July after concerns the S-400 could compromise the stealth signature of the new aircraft. 

The U.S. State Department released a report rejecting Jordan’s self-proclaimed refusal to extradite Ahlam Ahmad al-Tamimi. Washington and Amman signed an extradition agreement in 1995 that a Jordanian court dismissed in 2017. U.S. authorities accused Al-Tamimi, a Hamas terrorist, of co-organizing the “Sbarro attack” in Jerusalem in 2001 that killed 15 people, including two Americans.