Somewhat relevant to Yemen news as the situation with Qatar is important to the Middle East and the country was part of the Saudi-led coalition.
I am not sure how much Qatar news I will be posting here and will probably not hunt down much as of right now, but this popped up in my Twitter feed just now and I have yet to update the blog today until now.
I have more time tomorrow and will hopefully get to the remarks from Senators Murphy and Young on the Saudi Arms sale resolution.
From CBS News:
Defense Secretary Mattis met with Qatar’s defense minister on Wednesday morning in DC where an $12 billion arms deal was signed. This trip had been planned at least 2 months ago. Despite recent tensions surrounding the president’s stance on Qatar supporting Iran and terrorism, Qatar really wanted to sign this deal and purchase the weapons.
“We are pleased to announce today the signing of the letter of offer and acceptance for the purchase of the F-15QA fighter jets, with an initial cost of $12 billion dollars,” read the Qatari Defense Minister’s statement on Wednesday afternoon. “We believe that this agreement will propel Qatar’s ability to provide for its own security while also reducing the burden placed upon the United States military in conducting operations against violent extremism.”
The full arms sale, of over $20 billion, was notified in November 2016. This means it had already been authorized by congress and the executive branch, when President Obama was in office, before the Trump administration came into office. Eventually, Qatar is set to receive 36 American-made F15s.
There have been mixed statements from the president and Secretary of Defense on the situation with Qatar and the US has a military base there. Along with signing this arms sale, the Qataris came to the US in hopes of settling some of the escalating regional tension. That was not accomplished.
“When no one wanted to host your troops after 9/11, we did. We protected them. Saudi Arabia asked you to leave,” said Meshal bin Jamad al Thani, the Qatari ambassador to the U.S. Qataris believe that the blockade of their country is politically motivated by the Saudis in an effort to flex their muscle in the region.