Russia, Israel Sign Military Cooperation Agreement

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (Link) - Jack Kinsella (September 6, 2010)

Russia and Israel today signed an agreement on military cooperation.

Details of the deal inked by the countries� defense ministers in Moscow were not immediately disclosed. But Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov said Moscow was �studying seriously and attentively� the experiences and practices of Israel�s military as it modernizes its army.

His Israeli counterpart, Ehud Barak, said Israel was �ready to continue sharing experience with the Russian military on fighting terrorism and ensuring security, including by using air drones.�

Barak also met with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who said, �We have purchased several unmanned aerial vehicles in Israel. We have launched a few satellites in Israel�s interests. We are examining the possibility of equipping Israeli airplanes with our instruments and laser equipment.�

Today�s talks came after strains between Russia and Israel over Russian arms sales to the Jewish state�s major regional foes, Syria and Iran.

Russia has sought to build up a fleet of Israeli-made spy drones since Georgia used such Israeli aircraft against Russia in their brief 2008 war.

Russian officials said Israel had already sold Moscow 12 pilotless aircraft and would supply 36 more, worth around $100 million.

compiled from agency reports

With Russia�s cooperation and support of many of the nations allied against Israel and named in the attack on Israel from the North, I view Russia�s �studying seriously and attentively� of Israel�s military with strong suspicion. I would also be curious if Israel built all of the satellites Russia launched into orbit for them or if this cooperation could all play part in the future alliance against Israel. There is some belief that Russia is actually not part of the Gog/Magog alliance, but given the actions in the past and existing alliances I cannot dismiss it. Keep watching!