US set to sign off on $320 million sale of precision-guided bombs to Israel

Congress notified about weapons transfer from Rafael’s American subsidiary to Israeli parent company for air-to-surface weapons system that can help reduce Gaza civilian casualties

A photo of the Spice Family system from the Rafael Advanced Defense Systems website.
A photo of the Spice Family system from the Rafael Advanced Defense Systems website.

The White House is planning to okay a $320 million sale of precision-guided weapon systems to Israel, according to a Wall Street Journal report published Monday.

The deal will see Israel’s Rafael defense contractor purchase the weapons from Rafael USA, an American subsidiary.

Congress was notified about the sale of the Spice Family gliding bomb assemblies, designed to turn unguided bombs into GPS-guided munitions, on October 31, according to the report.

Support, assembly, testing and other military technology would also reportedly be provided as part of the deal.

The weapon systems can convert general-purpose and penetration warheads into precision weapons with firing ranges of 60-100 kilometers, according to the Rafael website.

The report came after the US House of Representatives last week voted to advance $14.5 billion in military aid to Israel, though the leader of the Senate’s Democratic majority along with the White House have made clear that they will not sign off on the legislation unless it includes assistance for both Israel and Ukraine.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the deal was already in progress before October 7.

Israeli forces have been carrying out broad strikes in the Gaza Strip since Hamas’s murderous rampage in Israeli communities last month, which saw some 3,000 terrorists burst across the border into Israel from Gaza, killing some 1,400 people and seizing over 240 hostages of all ages under the cover of a deluge of thousands of rockets fired at Israeli towns and cities. The vast majority of those killed were civilians — including babies, children and elderly residents.

Israel says its offensive is aimed at destroying Hamas’s military and governance capabilities, and has vowed to eliminate the entire terror group, which rules the Strip. It says it is targeting all areas where Hamas operates, while seeking to minimize civilian casualties.

The precision air-to-surface weapons system mentioned in the Wall Street Journal report would help to minimize civilian casualties in Gaza, as well as allow Israeli aircrafts to strike from longer ranges.

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