U.S. selling smart bombs worth $1B to terror sponsor nation
The United States has agreed to pay $1.29 billion as part of a massive arms deal to Saudi Arabia. The deal includes nearly 13,000 smart bombs. The huge deal — which is unlikely to be blocked by Congress — was announced on Saturday by the State Department after being hammered out by the Obama administration in a bid to help boost military support for Gulf states. Pentagon officials say the sale will help stockpile the Middle East nation’s military supplies to “sustain strong military-to-military relationships between the United States and Saudi Arabia.”
NPR reports the sale will include several advanced precision weapons, including Joint Direct Attack Munitions, which are more sophisticated than the unguided firepower the Saudis currently have. Critics say the payload of sophisticated weapons will instead bolster the Saudis’ continuing air war against the Houthi rebels in Yemen. More than 5,700 people, including at least 2,577 civilians — 637 of them children — have been killed in the eight months Saudi Arabia has led a coalition of Gulf States in the bombing campaign, according to the United Nations. Another 2.3 million have been displaced.
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