Outgoing CENTCOM commander Gen. Kenneth McKenzie has called on Israel to shares its air and missile defense systems with its regional allies to counter the Iranian threat.

Gen. McKenzie told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday that such a step would bolster security cooperation between Israel and its fellow Arab CENTCOM members, including Iraq, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia.

He said the most pressing and significant issues all the states in the region confront regarding Iran are air and missile defense, and Israel’s entry into CENTCOM “has great opportunities, particularly in the area of integrated defense”.

Referring to threats by Iran's ballistic and cruise missiles as well as drone program, he said, "Everyone in the region is seized by the Iranian threat, and they want to be able to defend themselves against that threat — that threat is primarily in the air”.

Describing the Islamic Republic’s ballistic missile program as an "exigent threat", McKenzie added, "They have over 3,000 ballistic missiles of various types, some of which can reach Tel Aviv. Over the last five-to-seven years, they have invested heavily in the ballistic missile program. Their missiles have significantly greater range and significantly enhanced accuracy.”

"Iran continues to pose the greatest threat to US interests and the security of the region as a whole. Through its proxies and clients, Iran has fomented conflict, an arc tracing from Yemen through the Arabian Peninsula, across Iraq and Syria and Lebanon and to the very borders of Israel," he noted.

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