The Bush administration has decided to supply billions of dollars in advanced new weapons to Saudi Arabia, other Arab allies of the United States and to Israel, senior State Department officials and congressional aides said Friday.
The arms and aid package, which the officials said is to be announced on Monday, is part of a U.S. initiative to reassure worried allies in the Middle East that despite its troubles in Iraq , the United States remains committed to the region. It also is meant to send a signal of resolve to Iran's increasingly confident leaders.
Billions of dollars. Color me silly, but couldn't we use this money at home, right here in the good ole U.S. of A.? I do believe people in New Orleans are still suffering, post-Katrina, for example. But even sillier is, what is Dubya thinking? Because THIS was in the New York Times on Saturday:
Bush administration officials are voicing increasing anger at what they say has been Saudi Arabia’s counterproductive role in the Iraq war. They say that beyond regarding Mr. Maliki as an Iranian agent, the Saudis have offered financial support to Sunni groups in Iraq. Of an estimated 60 to 80 foreign fighters who enter Iraq each month, American military and intelligence officials say that nearly half are coming from Saudi Arabia and that the Saudis have not done enough to stem the flow.
But nope! Let's give 'em billions in military aid anyway with no guarantees the weapons won't be eventually used against us or the effort in Iraq:
In talks about the package, the administration has not sought specific assurances from Saudi Arabia that it would be more supportive of the American effort in Iraq as a condition of receiving the arms package, the officials said.
Of course, we all know that private contractors such as Haliburton are making money hand over fist in Iraq, so let's do all we can to ensure the region remains volatile. (For some appalling testimony about the State Dept and its contractors responsible for the $600 million U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, click here. Particularly interesting is the allegation regarding the use of Filipino slave labor.) Let's also not forget we once supplied Saddam Hussein with weapons, and it's no secret the Bush Dynasty has been doin' bidness with the Saudis for generations now. I'm beginning to believe that peace in the Middle East is actually the last thing these neocons desire.