In the name of 'fighting extremism', the US is arming two of the Arab world's leading human rights abusers: Saudi Arabia and Egypt.
By Brian Whitaker
"In a move supposedly intended to counter Iranian influence, the US has announced a series of arms deals with Middle Eastern countries.
Apart from Israel, which will receive $30bn in military aid, Egypt will get $13bn. Five Gulf states - Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman and the UAE - will also be sold weaponry to the tune of $20bn, with the lion's share going to the Wahhabi regime in Riyadh.
Thus, in the name of "working with these states to fight back extremism" (as secretary of state Condoleezza Rice put it), the US is arming two of the Arab world's leading human rights abusers: Saudi Arabia and Egypt.....
If the Bush administration's goal was to inflame Sunni-Shia tensions across the region and to spread the sectarian strife in Iraq to neighbouring countries, it would be hard to imagine a more effective way of going about it....."