Photo: L Johnson / FLickr
It’s come seemingly out of nowhere, but lately the Persian Gulf peninsula nation of Qatar has become extremely close with the United States.The Wall Street Journal broke the story the other day that the United States will be building a missile defence radar station at a top secret site in Qatar. While that’s been widely reported, there have been a recent bout of proposed foreign military sales to Qatar that have been largely under-reported.
Just last week, the agency behind the Foreign Military Sales Program told congress that they’re interested in pursuing two huge sales to Qatar.
Qatar requested 700 Hellfire missiles — to the tune of $137 million — that the Department of defence just gave the necessary notice to Congress to ink the deal.
Even more, Qatar asked for 24 AH-64D Apache Attack Helicopters which are also in the pipeline for sale. That sale includes nearly 600 Hellfire missiles and 300 stinger missiles, as well as night vision goggles, 60 GPS systems, 30 radio jammers, 30 chain guns, and much more.
That sale would go for $3.0 Billion. Only a congressional vote will stop it.
Why the sales? Well, as the U.S. moves additional carriers into the Gulf to contend with Iran, arming a local friendly monarchy — as the U.S. has been doing with neighbouring United Arab Emirates — makes sense at a point.
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