מטוסי הF35 של חיל האויר ייתנו מענה מבצעי לאיום טילי השיוט האיראניים
F-35 fighter jet
Photo: Lockheed Martin
Defense Minister Benny Gantz meeting with U.S, President Donald Trump in the White House in January

Gantz heads to U.S. with shopping list of weaponry

Defense minister's Washington talks to include expediting sale of aircraft earmarked for Israeli Air Force as well as advanced weapons systems meant to guarantee Israel's qualitative military edge amid talks to F-35 sale to UAE

Yoav Zitun, Itamar Eichner |
Published: 09.22.20 , 11:10
When Defense Minister Benny Gantz departed for the United States late Monday for meeting with American counterpart Mark Esper, he took with with him a list of munitions Israel says it needs to maintain its military superiority in the Middle East.
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  • The two were expected to discuss U.S. weapons sales following the purported sale of F-35 fighter jets and other advanced weapons systems to the UAE, as part of that country's decision to sign a normalization agreement with Israel.
    דונלד טראמפ ובני גנץדונלד טראמפ ובני גנץ
    Defense Minister Benny Gantz meeting with U.S, President Donald Trump in the White House in January
    (Photo: White House)
    U.S. President Donald Trump announced his intentions of completing the sale to the UAE despite concerns Israel would lose its military advantage in the region if the F-35 is in the hands of an Arab nation.
    Gantz held consultations with IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi and senior defense officials before his departure.
    מטוסי הF35 של חיל האויר ייתנו מענה מבצעי לאיום טילי השיוט האיראנייםמטוסי הF35 של חיל האויר ייתנו מענה מבצעי לאיום טילי השיוט האיראניים
    F-35 fighter jet
    (Photo: Lockheed Martin)
    Sources said Israel may demand an earlier supply of Boeing KC-46 Pegasus is a military aerial refueling and strategic military transport aircraft that was scheduled to be delivered in four years time.
    The U.S. has green-lighted the sale of eight jets to Israel for $2.4 billion dollars.
    Boeing KC-46 Pegasus Boeing KC-46 Pegasus
    Boeing KC-46 Pegasus
    (Photo: Boeing)
    Israel may also be able to purchase advanced F-15 EX, earmarked to become the next generation IDF bombers by 2023, with improvements to its engine power, weaponry, aeronautic attributes and its cyberwar capabilities.
    Gantz was also to discuss future acquisition of advanced long-range capabilities.
    The Defense Ministry said in a statement that Gantz would be holding talks vital to maintaining Israeli military superiority in the region and to the ongoing efforts to combat Iranian aggression.
    Boeing F-15EX designated as Israel's next fighter bomber Boeing F-15EX designated as Israel's next fighter bomber
    Boeing F-15EX designated as Israel's next fighter bomber
    (Photo: Boeing)
    The defense minister, though flying on a commercial airliner, was separated from the rest of the passengers and was expected to quarantine for five days upon his return.
    He was accompanied by two staff members and a security detail.
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