The Israeli regime would likely ask Washington for billions of dollars in the wake of revolutions and anti-government protests across the Middle East and North Africa.
“Israel may seek an additional USD 20 billion in US security assistance to help guard from the potential threats that could develop in light of recent changes occurring in the Middle East,” Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told the Wall Street Journal in an interview published on Tuesday.
The senior Israeli official also deemed the changes in the region a "movement in the right direction," saying that in the long-run, Israel should not fear the "movement of Arab societies toward modernity."
Barak said that while Israel did not "face an immediate threat to its security, the issue of qualitative military aid for Israel becomes more essential for us, and I believe also more essential for you [the US].
"It might be wise to invest another USD 20 billion to upgrade the security of Israel for the next generation or so," he added, claiming that a strong Israel could become a stabilizer in the Middle East region.
Israel spends roughly nine percent of its gross national product to guard from potential threats. Its military expenditure amounted to USD 17 billion this year, of which US aid is USD 3 billion.
Tel Aviv has kept a wary eye on a recent tidal wave of anti-government protests that has raced across the Middle East, originating with revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, which have swept longstanding autocratic rulers from power.