Two Democratic Congress aides said there were 50 F-35 jets worth about $ 10 billion in the arsenal.
“This technology will significantly alter the military balance in the Gulf and affect Israel’s military margin,” Elliott Engel, a House Democrat senior Democrat, said in a statement.
“The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is a game changer stealth platform that boasts advanced strike capability and unique sensor technology. Exports of this aircraft should be considered very carefully and all changes in Congress should be analyzed.
A State Department spokesman told CNN that “as a matter of policy, the department has not publicly confirmed or commented on the proposed security sale or relocation until it is duly notified to Congress.”
The start of this informal process means that sales can be finalized in the next few months. When the formal notice of sale is sent to Congress, the period between now and then depends on the nature and number of questions the State receives from Congress. But usually after about 20-40 days, the state officially announces the sale to Congress. Congress has 30 days to review it.
The Israeli government initially opposed the sale and publicly denied that it had anything to do with providing jets to the emirates and normalizing relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.
The Israeli prime minister and defense minister recently issued a statement saying they were not opposed to some hand sales to Arab countries following the Trump administration’s assurance that Israel’s “quality military margin” would be maintained.
Israel is currently the only region in the F-35 possession zone.
The State Department did not respond to a request for comment.