Why don’t we start World War Three by selling $20 billion in arms to Saudia Arabia? Let’s let the usual Lackey – speaking on condition of anonymity, of course! – explain.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Bush administration is preparing a package of arms sales to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states that could be worth some $20 billion over the next 10 years, a senior U.S. defense official said on Saturday.
The official largely confirmed reports of the deal in The New York Times and Washington Post ahead of a joint trip to Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
The official, speaking on condition of anonymity as the deal has not yet been officially announced or completed, said the administration hoped to present the package to the U.S. Congress for approval in the fall.
Israel’s a bit nervous about this, of course, because Saudi Arabia is a weensy bit close to their border for comfort. No problem – we’ll just up the arms sales to Israel too! And they can have even MORE chocolate sauce on their ice cream than their uppity little Arab brothers.
The United States has sought to allay Israeli concerns about the forthcoming package. The senior U.S. defense official said Washington was working on a military assistance deal for Israel expected to top $30 billion during the next decade, a significant increase on current levels.
All right, so now we’ve got the Israelis calmed down. Whew! That was a close one! But wait – what about Saudi Arabia’s other neighbors? Won’t they feel, ya know, kinda left out? No worries – we’ve thought of that too!
The Saudi package would upgrade the country’s missile defenses and air force and increase its naval capabilities, the official said. It “may make sense” also to provide Saudi Arabia with satellite-guided munitions, the official said.
“None of these things are final proposals by any means,” the official said, stressing discussions with the countries involved and members of Congress were still needed.
The package would cover other U.S. allies in the Gulf, the official said. Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are expected to benefit, the Times and Post said.
The United States also is preparing a package of military assistance worth some $13 billion in the next decade for Egypt, another U.S. ally in the Middle East, a senior State Department official said.
But you know what? They’re not TRYING to start World War Three, so it won’t happen.
“This isn’t an arming of the Middle East,” the official said. “This is part of a continual, deliberate program.”
Take that, skeptics!
I think it’s really none of our business what Saudi Arabia wants to do with those weapons, anyway. I mean, we all know how benign their intentions have always been towards us. Hey, only 15 out of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 were Saudi! And as for our little adventure in Iraq – well, I’m sure that they wouldn’t interfere in that.
Now, Bush administration officials are voicing increasing anger at what they say has been Saudi Arabia’s counterproductive role in the Iraq war. They say that beyond regarding Mr. Maliki as an Iranian agent, the Saudis have offered financial support to Sunni groups in Iraq. Of an estimated 60 to 80 foreign fighters who enter Iraq each month, American military and intelligence officials say that nearly half are coming from Saudi Arabia and that the Saudis have not done enough to stem the flow.
One senior administration official says he has seen evidence that Saudi Arabia is providing financial support to opponents of Mr. Maliki. He declined to say whether that support was going to Sunni insurgents because, he said, “That would get into disagreements over who is an insurgent and who is not.”
All snarking aside…this is reason number 4,778 why neo-con foreign policy is horribly dangerous and will cause Armageddon. But unfortunately for Bush and his Rapture Right followers, Armageddon is a feature, not a bug.
Is it impeachment time yet?