Senator censures $110Bn arms sale to Saudis, citing atrocities in Yemen

Yemeni protesters take part in an anti-US rally in the capital Sana
Yemeni protesters take part in an anti-US rally in the capital Sana’a on May 20, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

A US senator has censured the whopping $110 billion weapons deal President Donald Trump signed with the Saudi kingdom, insisting that Washington is trusting a regime with “the worst human rights record” in the region to bring peace to the Middle East.

Press TV – “It appears the Trump administration is counting on the country with the worst human rights record in the region to enforce peace and security in the Middle East,” Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut wrote in an op-ed piece for the Huffington Post on Saturday, describing the arms sale as “a terrible idea.”

Murphy, who is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, further pointed to the fact that the monarchy has persistently used US-supplied weaponry against civilians in the region and specifically in neighboring Yemen.

“[Former President Barack] Obama withheld precision-guided munitions because the Saudis were using US-provided munitions to repeatedly target civilian and humanitarian sites in their bombing campaign inside Yemen, despite regular protests from the United States,” he wrote.

“By selling the Saudis these precision-guided weapons more — not fewer — civilians will be killed because it is Saudi Arabia’s strategy to starve Yemenis to death to increase their own leverage at the negotiating table. They couldn’t do this without the weapons we are selling them,” the senator emphasized.

Murphy went on to insist that more Yemenis have since been radicalized and blamed the US for Saudi Arabia’s military aggression against their country. He further argued that the advanced armaments supplied to the despotic regime would not be used against intended targets such as the Daesh (ISIS) and al-Qaeda terrorist group.

“The Saudis’ obsession with Iran, and the proxy wars (like Yemen) that flow from this obsession, mean that they have little bandwidth to go after extremist groups,” wrote the US lawmaker, arguing that even if Trump tries to exert pressure on the Saudis, they will likely not concede since “they are already getting everything they could ever want militarily from the United States.”

The Democratic senator also pointed out that the weapons deal “was negotiated by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, who has zero experience in foreign relations generally, or Saudi arms sales specifically.”

This is while Trump praised the unprecedented arms deal with the Saudis on Saturday, boasting that it will generate job growth for Americans.

“Tremendous investments in the United States. Hundreds of billions of dollars of investments into the United States and jobs, jobs, jobs,” Trump stated referring to the massive weapons sale.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration has claimed that the arms package aims to bolster Saudi Arabia’s defense capabilities by enhancing their military hardware and relevant services while also allowing the US to reduce its military commitment in the region.

“This package of defense equipment and services support the long-term security of Saudi Arabia and the (Persian) Gulf region in the face of Iranian threats, while also bolstering the Kingdom’s ability to contribute to counter terrorism operations across the region, reducing the burden on the US military to conduct those operations,” the White House said in a statement.

Murphy, however, underlined that the arms deal would escalate the proxy war in the region, adding that this is not “our fight.” He then argued that the $110 billion in funds could instead be applied to a strategy aimed at attaining global security, such as providing primary education in Africa.

“Yes, this is the Saudi’s money, but we shouldn’t just assume that the path to global security is through the spread of more and more weapons,” he reasoned, noting that terrorist groups “thrive on economic destitution” that more education could combat.

Murphy concluded that while the Saudi regime remains an American ally and cooperates with the US in what he referred to as the battle against extremist groups, it is “a deeply imperfect friend” to trust with these highly calibrated weaponry.

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Posted by on May 21, 2017, With 1627 Reads Filed under Government & Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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9 Responses to "Senator censures $110Bn arms sale to Saudis, citing atrocities in Yemen"

  1. joetv  May 22, 2017 at 11:45 am

    The sight of Syrian children dieing, in what is now proven to be a fake video, was the reason for Ivanka’s tears which lead to more civilian death. Where is her humitarian angst and concern for the children of Yemen. Maybe they are too African. Maybe daddy is fresh out of tomohawks. Maybe Americans have had enough. Just maybe.

  2. Harry Haller  May 21, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    Well at least he negotiated a sale instead of just giving the weapons to them. Although initiating WWIII is a wee bit troubling.

  3. Cold Wind  May 21, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    This is a terrible mistake on the part of Trump..or not. He is not completely clueless, he is aiding and abetting the biggest financial backer of ISIS in the world. It is not possible he doesn’t know this. The “Deal” amounts to complicity in terrorism– an impeachable offensive. In this one act, Trump & Company degrades the United States of America and brings it to yet another low point in history. In addition to aiding terrorism, we must assume Trump is preparing for a war against Iran and possibly world war three. What possible good are all the alleged and in truth highly speculative jobs generated by the war industry, if the price is millions dead? This Saudi “deal” is shameful.

  4. Dr. Abu-Bakr Susta  May 21, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    The “Stop Arming Terrorists Act” is a U.S. House of Representatives bill (H.R. 608) sponsored & cosponsored by seven Republicans and six Democrats. See https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/608.

    The Stop Arming Terrorists Act (SATA) would “prohibit the use of federal agency funds to provide covered assistance to: (1) Al Qaeda, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or any individual or group affiliated with, associated with, cooperating with, or adherents to such groups; or (2) the government of any country that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) determines has, within the most recent 12 months, provided covered assistance to such a group or individual.”

    Thus, Prez Donny, daughter/wife Ivanka, ‘Cuck’ Jared and the Saudi d-Ruler may not want to count their cluck-cluck-cucking chickens before they’ve hatched. If passed by Congress & signed into law by a baby Prez, then many Yemeni & Syrian civilian women, men & children will live. Israelis too, given ‘blowback.’

    Donny, Vanky & Nikki Haley: Think about the “beautiful babies”!

  5. JohnZ  May 21, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    Somebody needed to do this. Disgusting. America has become a joke to the rest of the world. A facade that hides the real America: dark, venal, greedy, its citizens lack the basics of a decent education, easily propagandized into believing anything the government tells them. The government run by hidden society of evil people some of whom may not be human. A nation with nor moral compass yet, it hypocritically claims to be a Christian nation. The arms dealer to the world for the sake of the bottom line and Wall St. profits, it deals in death, destruction, chaos and misery. Its major export is violence.
    Trump now bowing and scraping to the crypto jews in KSA has made an utter fool of himself. Congress must act and act soon to remove this clown before he causes any more damage.
    LOCK HIM UP!

    • RichardD  May 21, 2017 at 6:49 pm

      The US has a Jew problem, that doesn’t absolve the US from crimes that Jews aren’t responsible for, and there are many. But Jews may be a terminal condition for the US. Jews are an invasive parasitical species detrimental to the well being of the host population, and the US and Palestine are just their latest victims. England and the UK have their own problems with them.

      That doesn’t mean that all Jews, or even most Jews are bad, but they’re carriers for an evil criminal Jew cabal that infiltrates and preys on the victim population of non Jews to their detriment. Many nations now and throughout history don’t allow or have expelled a Jew population for these reasons. The US has the largest population of them outside of Palestine, and we’re both suffering the ill effects of their degeneration and exploitation.

      Their rabbinical teachings which they’ve tried to hide from non Jews for thousands of years, are anti Christian, anti golden rule and predatory. It’s a deeply flawed cult religion that is a threat to humanity. Jesus spoke against them and called them the synagogue of Satan. Judaism isn’t completely without merit, but it’s been very misused and abused.

  6. wjabbe  May 21, 2017 at 9:58 am

    https://www.murphy.senate.gov/about/
    Quote:
    • Residence: Cheshire, CT
    • Born: August 3, 1973
    • Education: Williams College, University of Connecticut Law School
    • Family:
    • Wife: Cathy Holahan
    • Children: Owen & Rider
    • Sworn In: January 3, 2013
    “Following the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school in 2012, Senator Murphy became one of the leading proponents of commonsense reforms to reduce gun violence.”
    Senator, since you are a lawyer you know the rules of crime scene investigations. Provide all the scientific and forensic proof that anyone died at Sandy Hook Dec. 14, 2012. Many of the fake parents are scamming the public out of money. Many people in your State have lied to the public about this fake gum grab hoax. They have obstructed investigators seeking the truth. Why don’t you speak up about it as forcefully as you spoke up about the Saudis? There is not one iota of physical or forensic proof that anyone died at Sandy Hook period. What kind of a lying fool are you anyway?

  7. Voratapoles  May 21, 2017 at 8:43 am

    Yemeni babies were starving to death when Obama was bombing them and giving the Saudis weapons, despite lip service to the contrary.

  8. David Odell  May 21, 2017 at 8:35 am

    I’m going to guess the commission on a 350 billion sale is hard to come by. So, the ability to place the lives of innocent civilians in front of that commission is dependent on foresight and intelligence to understand how it will play out. That is an unreasonable expectation to place on Oligarchs basking under the light of solid gold chandeliers. The US govt or what is left of it, better wake up. Self enrichment by way of death of a single human is a crime called conspiracy to commit murder. Anyone who signs off is complicit and guilty by association.

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