Citing American officials who spoke on condition of anonymity, the Times said on Saturday that the decision to ship the weapons quickly came after relatively little debate within the White House.

The report said that the news threatens to anger Arab governments and others who could perceive Washington as aiding Israel in the manner that Iran has armed Hezbollah.

The munitions are part of a sales package approved last year, the officials said. But some military officers said the request for expedited delivery was unusual and indicated that Israel has many targets it plans to hit in Lebanon.

The arms shipment has not been announced publicly. The officials who described the decision by George Bush's administration to rush the munitions included employees of two government agencies.

One of them said the shipment was only one example out of a broad array of armaments that the United States has long provided Israel, the Times said.

Pentagon and military officials declined to describe in detail the size and contents of the shipment to Israel, the newspaper said.

But one US official said the shipment should not be compared to the kind of "emergency resupply" of dwindling Israeli stockpiles that was provided during the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, according to the Times report.