Saudia Arabia and five other Gulf states will be outfitted with the latest in American weaponry, while Israel and Egypt would receive commitments for increased military aid over the next ten years, the Washington Post reported Saturday. Among the systems to be sold to the Saudis are Joint Direct Attack Munitions, or JDAMs, a technology which turns ordinary bombs into “smart” bombs. Israel will receive a commitment for military aid totalling $30 billion over the next ten years, and Egypt will receive a similar commitment for $13 billion.
The report said that the deal has been in the works for several months. Sources in the U.S. security establishment said that the deal was part of Washington's efforts to persuade the Saudis to support the new government in Iraq, as well as outfitting “moderate” Muslim countries to defend themselves against Iran.