(LibertySociety.com) – Over the summer, there were rumblings that the US was planning to sell arms to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). However, some US officials believed Israel, our closest ally in the region, was going to veto the plan to sell drones and fighter jets to the country. That didn’t happen, and now, the deal has become official.
On November 5, Reuters reported the US State Department notified Congress about its plan to sell 18 armed MQ-9B aerial drones to the UAE. The almost $3 billion deal comes just a week after President Donald Trump’s administration announced it might sell F-35 fighter jets to the country as well.
The sale of the drones would be the first time the US has sold the weapons to other countries. The decision was made after the Trump administration reinterpreted a section of the Cold War-era Missile Technology Control Regime agreement that previously prevented the US from selling the drones.
Israel Won’t Object
The sales moved forward after Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said they will not oppose the US sales of “specific weapons systems” to the UAE. Israel has previously never been open to American weapons sales to countries in the Middle East because of the threat to its national security that might pose.
However, in September, Israel signed the Abraham Accords, making peace with the UAE and Bahrain. The countries agreed to normalize relations, and the UAE became the second Arabic nation to recognize Israel.
Back in America, Trump is fighting recent election results that could lead to the end of his presidency. But the latest announcement makes it clear he continues to lead the US even as he tries to maintain power. No matter what happens, he’ll go down in history as a peacemaker in the Middle East.
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