zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden / Feb 8, 2017 9:58 AM
There was cheering among the libertarian community when, in the last months of his administration, Barack Obama decided to halt some arms sales to Saudi Arabia, following “allegations” of war crimes perpetrated by the kingdom in Yemen. However, it appears that Saudi Arabia – despite its clear predisposition toward Hillary Clinton in the presidential race – has made even deeper inroads into the White House than many suspected because according to the Washington Times, the Trump Administration is poised to “quickly approve” not only the deal rejected by Obama.
According to the Wash Times, citing one U.S. official directly involved in the transfers, a roughly $300 million precision-guided missile technology package for Riyadh and a multibillion-dollar F-16 deal for Bahrain are now in the pipeline ready for clearance from the new administration. The deals, if approved, would send a clear signal about the “priorities of the new administration.” For one it would suggest that Saudi Arabia is once again a clear beneficiary of US weapons exports, which would suggest that the proxy war in Yemen, fought largely with US-made weapons, will continue. The source spin is that the US delivery is meant to help defend the Saudis from potential ISIS terrorist threats, as well as concerns about Iran.
“These are significant sales for key allies in the Gulf who are facing the threat from Iran and who can contribute to the fight against the Islamic State,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. “Whereas the Obama administration held back on these, they’re now in the new administration’s court for a decision — and I would anticipate the decision will be to move forward.”
If confirmed, it would suggest that contrary to expectations of a military de-escalation in the middle east, the Trump administration will contribute further US military involvement, both direct and indirect, in the region. Already Trump has vowed to create “safe zones” in Syria, a decision which critics have blasted as assuring even more US troops are sent into harm’s way.
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