Biden Floats Meeting With Israel on Defense Aid

WASHINGTON (AP) -
Vice President Joe Biden at the Oval Office in the White House recently. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Vice President Joe Biden at the Oval Office in the White House recently. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The United States plans to meet with Israel to discuss how the U.S. can ensure Israel’s military advantage over its enemies, says Vice President Joe Biden.

U.S. officials said such a meeting with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was already in the works.

Biden raised the prospect of increased U.S. support for Israel as he sought to allay concerns among American Jews over the nuclear deal with Iran.

Although Biden hosts Jewish leaders for a reception each year ahead of the Jewish High Holy Days, this year’s confab took on heightened significance, with many of the participants among the most ardent opponents of the nuclear deal.

Extemporizing in front of a few dozen guests at his official residence, Biden said the United States was “fully, thoroughly prepared” to sit down with Israel’s intelligence and defense community to ask a simple question: “What do you need?” Then, in his characteristic freewheeling style, he turned to an aide and asked: “Have we announced the meeting with the Israelis?”

A senior Obama administration official said the U.S is discussing possible dates with Israel for a meeting with Netanyahu, with a sit-down expected “in the coming months.”