‘Haaretz is covering the war of words (or hand-to-hand combat) between the Israeli defense and treasury ministries over its budget. There is a constant battle in which the defense ministry attempts to guilt and intimidate the political class into increasing the budget. They do so with shrill warnings about having to cancel military drills and training and being unready to fight the next war–all because of bean counter politicians who won’t properly fund the nation’s security.
But this time the ministry has done something unprecedented. It’s revealed for the first time ever the level of funding for Israel’s WMD program. Until now it’s been a well-guarded secret, as is so much about the military-security apparatus. Actually, it still is. Because the ministry secretary general only revealed the $1.3-billion budgetary allocation was for “special projects.”
But my Israeli source informs me that this is a euphemism for Israel’s WMD program. The allocation goes to research and development of Israel’s nuclear weapons program. It constitutes 9% of Israel’s overall defense expenditures (which are nearly $15- billion, the IDF budget alone is nearly $7-billion). Next year, the budget will rise by $250-million. It appears Israel is getting its bang for its shekel, so to speak, as the U.S. spends 16% of its defense budget on WMD.’