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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Qatar, US sign $11bn weapons agreement for helicopters and missiles

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US Patriot missile.
US Patriot missile.

Qatar has agreed to buy some $11 billion worth of defense equipment from the United States, in what could be the western nation’s largest arms deal of 2014.

According to AFP, this is the first time Qatar is buying US Patriot missiles, which several of its Gulf neighbors, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, already own.

Citing anonymous US officials, the newswire said the deal entailed the purchase of about 10 batteries for Patriot systems to sink incoming missiles, 24 Apache helicopters and 500 Javelin anti-tank missiles.

The deal was reached during a meeting on Monday between Qatar’s Minister of State for Defense Affairs, Hamad bin Ali al-Attiyah, and US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.

In a statement, Hagel’s press secretary said:

“Today’s signing ceremony underscores the strong partnership between the United States and Qatar in the area of security and defense and will help improve our bilateral cooperation across a range of military operations.”

Economic and political ties between Qatar and the US have been growing.

In December of last year, the two countries signed a 10-year Defense Cooperation Agreement that means the US will continue to operate and maintain troops at Qatar’s Al Udeid Air Base through at least 2024.

Defense push

Qatar has been taking steps to improve its security in recent months, both through expensive weapons purchases and a new law that mandates military conscription for young Qatari men.

In March, Qatar announced that it had signed agreements with nearly two dozen contractors for $24 billion in arms, including new tanks, helicopters, warships, missiles and artillery.

Dassault fighter jet

The country is also mulling the purchase of 72 new fighter jets – a deal that the US, UK and France have been jockeying for – and is constructing a new high-tech naval base as part of the new port project.

Qatar has long been thought to be building up its defense capabilities in part to ward off potential threats from Iran.

However, the nation’s ambassador to the US, Mohammed Jaham Al-Kuwari, told AFP that the latest purchase was not because of any specific country.

“As you know our region is going through a lot of instability. What we bought are weapons to defend Qatar,” he said.

Meanwhile, senior Qatari military officials have begun receiving special training in the UK, while new conscripts inside the country are learning how to use military weapons and vehicles.

qatar military

Under Qatar’s new conscription law, Qatari men between the ages of 18 and 35 years old are required to train in the military for at least three months if they are college graduates, and four months if they have high school diplomas or have dropped out of school.

Once the training period is finished, nationals would be subject to two phases of reserves. The first would continue for around five to 10 years, with the recall period being no longer than 14 days.

The second reserve phase would last until the recruit becomes 40 years old, with the length of service depending on demand.

Thoughts?

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A_qtr
A_qtr
7 years ago

Personally I’m against any country spending any dollar on arms. But that’s just the ideal world my brain likes to escape to every now and then.

In reality this is a good move and one that is much needed. The last time Qatar made a large arms purchases was probably the 70’s.

In one way, strong western countries like the US, UK and France expect small rich countries like Qatar, Kuwait and others to spend their petrodollars in buying up their produced goods and invest in their economies when the economies take a down turn. Sort of an unwritten rule, we allow our companies to invest and give you the technology to develop your fields to guarantee your cash flow. We protect those fields and your rule with our political and military power. And in exchange we expect some of this cash to flow into our shores.

Probably four or five of the world’s biggest sovereign wealth funds are in the GCC and most of those funds are invested in either the US, UK, France and maybe Italy.

Also, the US military industry needs financing to support its R&D into high end warfare toys by selling billions and billions worth of standard and out of date military technology to other countries. Sale the Mideast F-16 in the billions of dollars to finance developing my F-35s and drones.

On Qatar’s end, we’ve recently been militarily active in Libya both in the air and on the ground in support of NATO’s greater efforts. Qatar was probably also prepared to move into Syria had NATO or the US made a military move. Qatar is also probably trying to take part in global peace keeping efforts led by the UN. To be able to do so you need to have a military that is up to date.

Also if military action is taken by the GCC against insurgents in Iraq or to defend against Iran aggression in the region, Qatar along with other nations will need to act. It is important Qatar upgrades it’s military power. Not to the same volume as Saudi or the UAE, or even Oman, but at least bring the technology up to par. Qatar on its own can’t ward off Iran, but if Iran does attack anywhere across the Arabian Gulf Sea, then allsix GCC nations will take action and to do so each country’s military needs to have more or the less the same level of technology.

I doubt this in anyway a reaction to the situation in GCC with the withdrawing the ambassadors. Buying $11 billion worth of arms from the US is a very long and lengthy process that has to go through the US congress and
several hearings for approval. Not exactly wal-mart! This has been in the plans for some years and was put into action with HH Shk. Tamim becoming the Emir. One of the things HH has clearly set out to do is to update the land, air and sea defense technology of Qatar. Knowing there is no way to increase the actual number of individuals in the armed forces beyond a few thousands, the focus by Qatar has moved to ensure the best military technology available on sale is purchased and put to use in here.

Expat Girl
Expat Girl
7 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

I learned a lot from your comment, thanks for sharing!

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

Great toys to play with and will keep the locals interested in Doing their military service. Never going to see real action, well unless there is a revolution..”.

٩(͡๏̯͡๏)۶
٩(͡๏̯͡๏)۶
7 years ago

Brilliant, thanks Hwa, I’m sure everyone will be in touch with you shortly……….

A_qtr
A_qtr
7 years ago

Hi Hwa Jurong… You seem legit and very knowledgable … In what continent does Russia sit ?

Expat Girl
Expat Girl
7 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

HAHAH fantastic!! That will settle it!!

Ali Imran
Ali Imran
7 years ago

Hummm $11 Billion weapons deal from US Why ? at this time when Israel is bombarding Palestine.

Okay so it was a product demonstration shown by Israel on innocent Palestine’s is being funded by US to sell their Arms to ARABS and then use their money against ARABS.

Checkout this :

U.S. Senate Doubles Funding for Israel’s Iron Dome

http://www.thewire.com/global/

They are creating a fear environment in middle east everywhere in order to sell their weapons and later the middle east .

Please be unite with other Muslim nation else it will be too late and you will loose your land and Kingdom.

ingeniero
ingeniero
7 years ago

Hey Hwa,
I need a little bit loan to buy property, few super cars and start a business..
Actually I need around 600 million dollars by next month maximum…
Can you send me loan application?

ingeniero
ingeniero
7 years ago

Hope they hire enough (local) people to operate these weapons!

Losing Days
Losing Days
7 years ago

Always dubious of people who have to say they are reputable or legitimate…

Should you not be deleting & blocking this sort of stuff Doha News?

Steve Brown
Steve Brown
6 years ago

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Steve Brown
Steve Brown
6 years ago

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