In a recent interview, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky complained that the Israeli government had given his country no real military aid, such as missile defense systems, in its ongoing battle against Russia.
“Israel gave us nothing. Nothing, zero,” Zelensky told France’s TV5Monde, as reported in The Times of Israel. “I understand they are in a difficult situation with Syria, with Russia.”
Israel has provided Ukraine with at least 2,000 helmets and 500 flak jackets, as well as tons of humanitarian aid, but has not provided defensive weapons.
Given that Israel is a Jewish state and Zelensky himself is Jewish, the Ukrainian president expressed surprise over the situation in the interview.
“You know, there are many people in Ukraine of Jewish origin, and there are a lot of Ukrainians in Israel," he said. "How is it possible to have this attitude? I was shocked."
In addition, Ukraine's ambassador to Israel, Yevgen Korniychuk, said in June, “While Russia slaughters our citizens, the Israeli government remains in its comfort zone and refrains from providing Ukraine with minimal defensive assistance."
Even earlier, in March, reported The Times of Israel, Zelensky talked about Israel's Iron Dome missile-defense system before the Knesset.
“Everybody knows that your missile defense systems are the best,” said Zelensky at the time. “You can definitely help our people, save the lives of Ukrainians.”
The refusal by Israel to provide weapons to Ukraine, according to The Times of Israel, "is seen as an attempt by Jerusalem to maintain working ties with Moscow, due to Russia’s control of Syrian air space, where Israel’s air force has carried out hundreds of sorties against alleged Iranian arms shipments and in order to keep groups backed by Tehran from establishing a foothold."
Since February, the U.S. has allocated $16.2 billion in largely military aid to Ukraine. Since 1946, the U.S. has provided more than $150 billion in aid to Israel," most of it military assistance, according to the Congressional Research Service.