Officials from the United States and Israel joined to inaugurate the first American military base on the latter’s soil, no doubt as a way to shore up support for, and the defense of, the Jewish state in the face of increased regional threats, primarily from Iran.

Israeli leaders said that the base’s opening sends a signal to the region that Tel Aviv’s readiness level is now much higher.

The new American post is situated on an existing Israeli Air Force, and will host dozens of U.S. service personnel who will be operating a missile defense system:

Together with the U.S., Israel has developed a multilayered system of defenses against everything from long-range guided missile attacks from Iran to crude rockets fired from Lebanon and the Gaza Strip.

While the base opening is largely symbolic because the missile defense system located in Israel was already being operated by American contractors and soldiers. Now, soldiers only will do so, just from a designated “base.” However, the symbolism is strong. [source]

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