(Senate - August 01, 2014)

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[Pages S5318-S5319]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  Mr. REID. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the Senate 
proceed to the consideration of Calendar No. 220, H.J. Res. 76; that a 
Reid-McConnell-Mikulski substitute amendment at the desk providing 
emergency appropriations for the Iron Dome defense system in Israel be 
agreed to; that the joint resolution, as amended, be read a third time 
and passed; that the Reid-McConnell-Mikulski title amendment, which is 
at the desk, be agreed to; and the motions to reconsider be considered 
made and laid on the table, with no intervening action or debate.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Is there objection to the request?
  Mr. McCONNELL. Reserving the right to object----
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Republican leader.
  Mr. McCONNELL. Let me say to my friend, the majority leader, this is 
a good example of our being able to put aside partisan considerations 
and work together to help our good friend Israel.
  I particularly want to salute Senator Graham and Senator McCain, who 
have been absolutely relentless in their efforts to make sure we send 
this important signal to Israel at a very tough time for them. They are 
being, in my view, criticized by everyone for pursuing a policy that I 
am absolutely certain we would pursue if somebody across our border 
were launching missiles at our civilian population.
  I think it is important for us to send a signal that the United 
States stands behind one of its best friends--if not its best friend--
in the world.
  I think the Prime Minister of Israel pretty well summed it up when he 
said: There is no moral equivalency here. Hamas launches missiles on 
civilians, and Israel warns civilians when it attempts to attack. And 
Hamas uses its own civilians to protect its missiles. There is no moral 
equivalency whatsoever.
  So as much of the world levels its criticism at Israel, I think it is 
important for the United States to say: What nonsense to suggest that 
the Israelis are doing anything that almost any country in the world 
would have done had its citizens been threatened by a neighbor as 
Israel has experienced.
  So, obviously, I do not object.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from Arizona.
  Mr. McCAIN. Mr. President, I wish to take a moment to thank both 
leaders for their efforts in bringing about this much-needed--not only 
the funding but the signal that the Congress will send and the 
President will sign that we are supporting them.
  We all know the latest news is, tragically, that a proposed cease-
fire has broken down. Apparently an Israeli soldier has been captured. 
And all of us know the ramifications of that in the future, the value 
the Israeli Government and people rightfully put on each one of their 
citizens who serve.
  I thank again our majority leader and the Republican leader for 
coming together on this most important signal. This isn't just about 
money. It is a signal from the American people and the American 
taxpayers that we are with the Israelis, because if they do not have 
Iron Dome, they can't defend themselves. It is that simple. The Iron 
Dome is the ability to keep innocent civilians and neighborhoods and 
families from being destroyed by these barrages of literally thousands 
of incoming rockets.
  Again, I thank my friend. There has been no one more relentless in 
this effort than the Senator from South Carolina. I yield for him.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from South Carolina.
  Mr. GRAHAM. Mr. President, the time is blurred now. Yesterday, or 
early this morning, a very bad occurrence happened to the people of 
Israel. During a cease-fire which they agreed to, an Israeli unit 
apparently was attacked by a Hamas suicide bomber. After that attack 
there was a charge against the unit in question, and apparently a 
soldier has been kidnapped and taken to the tunnels.
  It is so appropriate that today, of all days, the Senate speaks in 
one voice.
  I cannot thank Senator Reid enough for making this happen. Senator 
McConnell has worked to make sure it got cleared on our side, and it 
finally has.
  They are running out of Iron Dome missiles to protect themselves. To 
whom do they turn? To us.
  Mr. President, $225 million is a lot of money, but it is a rounding 
error in the budget.
  It is not only the missiles that matter; it is the message that goes 
with the missiles: We are with you. Here are the missiles. Use them to 
defend yourself. We will stand with you on the battlefield. We will 
stand with you in the court of public opinion, and we are going to push 
back against the United Nations, which is becoming more and more anti-
Israeli. As dysfunctional as the Congress has been, this is one of our 
finer moments.

  We are about to leave here soon with a lot of work undone, but let it 
be said that we did have the foresight and the ability and, quite 
frankly, the moral decency to end on a positive note.
  You can say a lot about this Congress--and much criticism is 
deserved--but here is what you cannot say: We left Israel in the lurch. 
In a bipartisan manner we were there when they needed us the most.
  To our friends in Israel: Stay as long as you need to stay. Do 
whatever you need to do.
  To our friends in Palestine: We grieve when children are killed. 
There is no more innocent person on the planet than a child.
  To the Palestinian people: Reject Hamas and seek peace. We are not 

[[Page S5319]]

enemy. We stand to help you, but you have to reject a terrorist 
organization that has the coldest and darkest of hearts, that would 
kill every Israeli child and put your children at risk. Reject this 
hateful ideology while you still can.
  To our friends in Israel: There is more to come when it comes to 
standing by your side.
  I thank both leaders of the Senate for rising to the occasion.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. The majority leader.
  Mr. REID. I appreciate the words of my three friends.
  Mr. President, there are times when partisanship does not exist. I 
hope everyone will note that last night when we couldn't get this 
cleared--I, we--there was no finger-pointing. I understand the person 
objected. He is a fine man. He is a man of principle. But I have faith 
in this institution and our sticking by our friend. So I am happy to be 
here today to be a part of this conclusion.
  The situation in Israel is grave. We think this Iron Dome protects 
Israel. It protects a lot of Israel. But Israel does not have enough 
Iron Domes--plural--to protect them. They need more. But this will 
certainly be a step in the right direction.
  Three thousand rockets have been fired in the last 2\1/2\, 3 weeks--
3,000. But for this technology that was perfected by the Israelis, they 
would be in dire straits. There would be a war in the Middle East that 
we cannot imagine.
  Let's be realistic. Are we going to benefit from what they have done? 
Of course we are. They are sharing this technology with us as we speak.
  There was a cease-fire that lasted about 2\1/2\ hours. It is terribly 
unfortunate what is going on over there, but, as David Brooks said on 
``NewsHour''--this conservative columnist said he had never known of a 
conflict in history where one side says: Kill more of us. It is hard to 
comprehend. When the Israelis notify someone ``there is going to be 
action taken in this building you are in; would you leave,'' the 
leadership in Gaza tells them to stay there, and unfortunately a lot of 
them do. This is something that is hard for me to comprehend, that 
something like this goes on.
  That little country, that tiny little country is the only democracy 
in that whole area. That is it.
  Netanyahu--if I were in Israel, I may have voted for someone else, 
but the Israeli people determine who leads that country. I don't know 
of a bond of friendship that we have or ever had in world history 
better than this one, and so I will stand by Israel. I will stand by 
Israel for a lot of personal reasons but certainly for political 
reasons, and I have no hesitation in declaring to the world that is how 
I feel.
  The ACTING PRESIDENT pro tempore. Hearing no objection to the 
unanimous consent request, without objection, it is so ordered.
  The amendment (No. 3780) was agreed to, as follows:

       Strike all after the first word, and insert:
       the following sum is appropriated, out of any money in the 
     Treasury not otherwise appropriated, for the fiscal year 
     ending September 30, 2014, and for other purposes, namely:

                         DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE


                       Procurement, Defense-wide

       For an additional amount for ``Procurement, Defense-Wide'', 
     $225,000,000, to remain available until September 30, 2015, 
     which shall be for the Secretary of Defense to provide to the 
     Government of Israel for the procurement of the Iron Dome 
     defense system to counter short-range rocket threats:  
     Provided, That such funds shall be transferred immediately 
     only through an exchange of letters to address emergent 
     operations in support of Operation Protective Edge, 
     notwithstanding section of the U.S.-Israel Iron 
     Dome Procurement Agreement:  Provided further, That nothing 
     in this paragraph shall be construed to apply to previously 
     appropriated funds for the procurement of Iron Dome:  
     Provided further, That such amount is designated by the 
     Congress as an emergency requirement pursuant to section 
     251(b)(2)(A)(i) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit 
     Control Act of 1985.
       This joint resolution may be cited as the ``Emergency 
     Supplemental Appropriations Resolution, 2014''.

  The joint resolution (H.J. Res. 76), as amended, was ordered to be 
engrossed for a third reading, was read the third time, and passed.
  The amendment (No. 3781) was agreed to, as follows:

       Amend the title so as to read: ``A bill making an emergency 
     supplemental appropriation for the fiscal year ending 
     September 30, 2014, to provide funding to Israel for the Iron 
     Dome defense system to counter short-range rocket threats.''.