US Rejects Israeli Request For Tanker Aircraft As Iran Plans Advance

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US rejects ISRAEL : The US has reportedly rejected an
Israeli request to fast-track the delivery of two tanker
aircraft.
The US has rejected an Israeli request to fast-track the
delivery of two tanker aircraft which had been ordered by
Israel, as plans for a possible military option against Iran’s
nuclear plan move forward, Ynet reported on Monday.
In October, sources in the Defense Ministry stated that
senior Israel Air Force (IAF) officers had requested that
the supply of four KC-46 tanker aircraft from the US be
sped up, asking that two of the aircraft be delivered
immediately.
The officers asked that the other two be supplied within
the next two to three years.
According to the Ynet report, the IDF hopes to convince
the US over the next year.
The US State Department approved the possible sale of up
to eight KC-46 tanker aircraft and related equipment to
Israel for an estimated cost of $2.4 billion last March,
marking the first time that Washington has allowed
Jerusalem to buy new tankers.
Israel was set to receive two of the Boeing-made planes
by late 2023, and during former prime minister Benjamin
Netanyahu’s last visit to Washington, he raised the issue
that two of the eight tankers be supplied in the next year.
The KC-46 tankers will replace Israel’s Ram (Boeing 707)
tanker aircraft that are required for long-range missions
and nearing the age of 60.
Israel’s fleet of Ram planes, the number of which remains
confidential, are former civilian aircraft adapted for
military uses such as aerial refueling for fighter jets, as
well as its fleet of transport aircraft. They were grounded
last year.
The new KC-46 tankers can refuel jets with 1,200 gallons
of fuel per minute by its fly-by-wire 55-ft. refueling boom.
It also can have wing air refueling pods allowing three jets
to be refueled at once within three to four minutes.
With a range of 11,830 km., with the capacity to unload
some 207,000 lbs. of fuel, the KC-46 can refuel over 64
different types of aircraft.
Such refueling aircraft would be critical for a strike on
Iran, as a mission against Iran would need to travel over a
thousand kilometers in each direction.
During a recent visit to the US, Defense Minister Benny
Gantz updated American officials that he had set a
deadline for when the IDF will need to complete
preparations for an attack against Iran.
There was no US veto to Israel’s plans, according to a
senior diplomatic source .