CRS Report: U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) works exclusively for the United States Congress, providing policy and legal analysis to committees and Members of both the House and Senate, regardless of party affiliation.

This report provides an overview of U.S. foreign assistance to Israel. It includes a review of past aid programs, data on annual assistance, and analysis of current issues.

Overview

Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II. To date, the United States has provided Israel $142.3 billion (current, or noninflation-adjusted, dollars) in bilateral assistance and missile defense funding. Almost all U.S. bilateral aid to Israel is in the form of military assistance, although from 1971 to 2007 Israel also received significant economic assistance.

In 2016, the U.S. and Israeli governments signed a new 10-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on military aid, covering FY2019 to FY2028. Under the terms of the MOU, the United States pledges to provide $38 billion in military aid ($33 billion in Foreign Military Financing grants plus $5 billion in missile defense appropriations) to Israel. This MOU replaced a previous $30 billion 10-year agreement, which ran through FY2018.

Israel is the first international operator of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the Department of Defense’s fifth-generation stealth aircraft, considered to be the most technologically advanced fighter jet ever made. To date, Israel has purchased 50 F-35s in three separate contracts.

P.L. 116-6, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019, provides the following for Israel:

  • $3.3 billion in Foreign Military Financing (FMF), of which $815.3 million is for off-shore procurement;
  • $5 million in Migration and Refugee Assistance (MRA) for refugee resettlement
  • $2 million in a homeland security grant;
  • Reauthorization of U.S. loan guarantees to Israel through September 30, 2023; and
  • Reauthorization of War Reserve Stock Allies-Israel (WRSA-I) through Sept 30, 2020.

P.L. 115-245, the Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Act, 2019 and Continuing Appropriations Act, 2019, provides the following for Israel:

  • $500 million in missile defense, of which $70 million is for Iron Dome, $187 million for David’s Sling, $80 million for Arrow 3, and $163 million for Arrow 2.

For FY2020, the Trump Administration requested $3.3 billion in FMF for Israel and $500 million in missile defense aid to mark the second year of the MOU. The Administration also requested $5 million in MRA humanitarian funding for migrants to Israel.

 

Defense for Children International - Palestine (DCIP) is a local, independent Palestinian human rights organization committed to securing a just and viable future for Palestinian children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.