DeSantis Steps Up To Bat for Israel

Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

(ConservativeFreePress.com_ – In a recent development, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has announced plans to support Israel by dispatching drones, firearms, and ammunition as the country readies itself for an operation in Gaza following an assault by Hamas. This move further cements DeSantis’ stance in favor of Israel as he vies for nomination in the 2024 Republican presidential race.

Jeremy Redfern, a spokesperson for DeSantis, revealed that Florida has already dispatched cargo aircraft filled with medical supplies, aerial drones, and protective gear such as body armor and helmets. Additionally, the state has partnered with private entities to send weapons and ammunition, the funding for which has come from private sources.

Maor Elbaz-Starinsky, Israel’s Consul General in Miami, initially denied making any requests for the listed supplies or discussing the matter with the governor. However, he later clarified that communication had indeed occurred between other Israeli government officials and the governor’s office to finalize the list of items to be sent.

DeSantis’ political maneuvers frequently overlap with his gubernatorial responsibilities. For example, Florida recently used state resources to fly migrants from Texas to Democrat-controlled regions. Earlier this week, the governor also mandated the disbandment of a pro-Palestinian student organization within state universities. Additionally, Florida has facilitated the return of approximately 700 Americans from Israel since the October 7th attack by Hamas.

These moves coincide with the Republican Jewish Coalition’s annual donor meeting in Las Vegas, which DeSantis is set to attend. He will be speaking to a Nevada Republican group this Saturday at a casino-resort. The Florida governor, along with other GOP presidential hopefuls, has been critical of President Joe Biden’s approach towards Israel, and has even critiqued former President Donald Trump and Nikki Haley, former Governor of South Carolina and UN Ambassador, for their Israel policies.

There is some uncertainty about whether DeSantis coordinated with the Biden administration regarding these exports. Typically, the Commerce or State Departments would need to authorize the export of military gear, as per Thomas Krueger, a specialist in international trade at the Akin Gump law firm and a former White House adviser on strategic trade.

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the National Security Council, stated that while it is not unlawful for a state governor to provide foreign aid, strict guidelines govern the export of such materials, although he couldn’t confirm if DeSantis had adhered to these regulations.

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