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I'm not sure why we should be indifferent to the only functioning democracy in the Middle East -- with a press arguably freer than ours, and a High Court that thumbs its nose at the politicians -- here, we only vaguely remember either of those aspects of democracy.

Nor are we _unprecedentedly partial_ to Israel's government -- we have been partial to western-style democracies throughout Europe, Japan, Australia -- it's always been a key element of our alliances, whether the democracy in question served our narrow interests at the moment or not. (We've also been partial to cruel despots, but only when it was expedient.)

Our military sales to Saudi Arabia dwarf our sales to Israel, and while Israel is required to reinvest most of its military aid in US-made arms and technology, the Saudis require that a third of their weapons purchase price comes back to Saudi business. I realize we sell them weapons to try to balance the zillions we pay in oil, but we ultimately spend more money and energy propping up the harshly repressive Saudi Government than we do supporting the democracy of Israel. Not to forget that each year Egypt gets about 2/3 to 3/4 as much military aid as Israel, and more economic aid -- and while we have forgiven 7-10 Billions in debt to Egypt, we have not done so to Israel. So no, we do not show inexplicable partiality to only one ME nation.

It's not as if the US gains no benefits from our close connection to Israel -- Israeli technology has substantially benefitted us economically. Drip irrigation, Internet telephony, Satellite TV encryption and pay-per-view, Instant Messaging, thermal imaging, digital color transmission, Firewalls, antivirus, voice mail, PHP, Flash Memory technology, Pentium processors, various complex info management software, not to mention security technology, medical technology, and cutting edge agricultural genetics and alternative energy technology were either created or developed or substantially refined by Israelis.

Pull all that input out of our economy, and it may suddenly seem like being a good friend to Israel is not such a lopsided deal, and certainly not a one-way street. Whereas from Saudi Arabia, we get oil and 9/11, and from Egypt, -- ummmm.... well, I'm sure there's something.

beats by dre it

This is all very new to me and this article really opened my eyes. Thanks for sharing with us your wisdom.

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