"Washington is striving to assure its Gulf allies concerned by the growing strength of Shi’ite Muslim Iran and the war in Iraq that it is committed to the region and will stand by them, with arms sales being part of that process, U.S. officials say.
Iranian defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said the United States was trying to "create a fake arms race in order to make their big arms companies survive," the official IRNA news agency reported.
But he also said countries had the right to buy or make arms to boost their defenses, and suggested military purchases by its Gulf neighbors would not worry the Islamic Republic.
"Iran has no concerns about the strengthening of the defensive capabilities of (other) … Islamic countries and regards their defensive capabilities as part of the capabilities of the Islamic world," Najjar told reporters, according to IRNA." Yahoo News
The main theme of this set of deals is the desire to do "business" (literally) in the Gulf. The Arabs have money and we might as well continue to have as much of it as they are willing to part with. Some Arabs in these countries will benefit from the sales. There will be a certain amount of the usual paying of "comissions" suitably disguised as something else, somewhere, sometime.
The Chinese, among others, have been pursuing Arab money and Arab investment opportuities all over the Arab World as well in many other places. The commercial competition from them is intense.
Those involved probably, almost, nearly think this is about Iran. The ludicrous conception of selling such sophisticated toys to the Saudis is delightful in an Evelyn Waugh kind of way. Saudi Arabia has a tiny, still poorly educated population. There is no way that THE KINGDOM can absorb this kind of equipment, but, then, neither can the jihadis. What will happen to all this "gear?" It will gather dust and rust somewhere after all the payments, training and posturing are finished.
The symbolism is the thing. We, the American guarantors of the status quo in the Middle East guarantee to you, the Sunni Arab govenments that we are not going to try to unseat you. We had our flirtation with radical change, but, well, … How can you be sure? Well, if we do, we can’t collect the money.
And, of course, this means that we understand what you have to do in Iraq…
Israel? They won’t pay for their part of the deal. pl