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GOP rep blasts squad dems for trying to block sale of F-35s Israel used to defend against Iran attacks


Daily Caller News Foundation

Republican Rep. Brian Mast of Florida blasted Democrats for trying to get the Biden administration to block the sale of advanced F-35 jets to Israel that defended on Saturday against Iran’s large-scale drone and ballistic missile attack in an exclusive statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Former House speaker Nancy Pelosi joined 39 Democratic colleagues, including members of the “Squad,” in an April 5 letter urging the president to reverse his decision authorizing a weapons sale to Israel after an Israeli airstrike killed seven humanitarian workers in Gaza. The transfer included U.S.-made F-35 fighter jets and other American-origin weapons needed “to ensure Israel can survive” amid threats and attacks from Iran, Mast, who serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said in a statement to the DCNF.

“Just last week, Pelosi and the Squad demanded Joe Biden stop transferring ‘offensive weapons’ to Israel,” Mast said in the statement. “This was akin to them calling for the U.S. to abandon Israel in the middle of a war.”

Iran launched roughly 300 drones, ballistic and cruise missiles at Israel on Saturday, according to the Israeli military, The Associated Press reported. U.S. weapons alongside its own Arrow Air Defense System enabled Israel to down up to 99% of oncoming Iranian drones and missiles, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said.

“Can you imagine how much more devastating Iran’s attack would have been if Israel didn’t have American-made fighter jets to shoot down some of these missiles?” Mast told the DCNF.

The sale authorized in late March included 1,800 MK-84 2,000-pound bombs, 500 MK-82 500-pound bombs, and 25 F-35A fighter jets, The Washington Post reported.

The Democrats who signed the letter worried the weapons, which would not arrive in Israel for months, could signify the administration had determined to ignore the devastation in Gaza and possible Israeli war crimes.

“We strongly urge you to reconsider your recent decision to authorize the transfer of a new arms package to Israel, and to withhold this and any future offensive arms transfers until a full investigation into the airstrike is completed,” the democrats wrote, referring to the airstrike killing the World Central Kitchen workers.

The IDF took responsibility for the strike and relieved two officers determined to be responsible after an investigation.

The administration is considering another $18 billion weapons sale that would eventually supply Israel with dozens of F-15 fighter jets, 30 AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAMs) and an unspecified number of Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAMs).

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Republished with permission from Daily Caller News Foundation

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