Posted: Aug 12, 2013 2:26 PM by Lindsey Gordon - MTN News
On the heels of his appointment as vice chair for the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency, U.S. Representative Steve Daines (R-MT) is visiting Israel this week.
Daines arrived in the Middle East on Sunday. His schedule includes meeting with Israeli business leaders on growing tech and start-up businesses, and will also use the opportunity to promote global trade with Montana.
"There's a group in the Flathead, a Montana business, that's going to be supplying some critical parts to a missile defense system that they're building in Israel," said Daines.
He continued,"We're going to have a made-in-Montana business and parts that are going to be supplying key components to a missile defense system to help ensure the peace and tranquility there in the Middle East."
Daines also said that in 2012 Montana did more than $1.5 million worth of trade with Israel.
While there Daines will meet with several top officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as well as the President of Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas and other key leaders.
"So we'll have a chance to really hear what the concerns are in Israel and, again, this is such an important region for the world. The U.S. national security interests are tied to Israel and there is so much turmoil in the Middle East. Every day we wake up, we're either hearing or reading about a story of turmoil in the Middle East and we need to keep working toward bringing peace to that important region of the world," said Daines.
The trip is privately funded by the American Israel Educational Foundation. This is Daines' first trip to Israel as an elected official.
"I think it's very important that the members of congress have a better grasp of Israel and the Middle East, because it's on the stage every day in terms of the issues we face of world peace and a good way to understand it is to spend time visiting the people there, understanding the geographical proximity, how small Israel is," said Daines.