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Gabbard Slams US Nuke Weapons Sale as Saudi Arabia Set to Receive THAAD Systems

Gabbard Slams US Nuke Weapons Sale as Saudi Arabia Set to Receive THAAD Systems
folder_openUnited States access_time2 years ago
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By Staff, Agencies

Tulsi Gabbard has slammed the US for allowing firms to sell Saudi Arabia nuclear tech despite its history of exporting extremism which inspires the Wahhabi Daesh [Arabic acronym for “ISIS” / “ISIL”] and al-Qaeda, which she says the Kingdom supports.

The Hawaiian congresswoman and Democratic presidential candidate took aim at the Kingdom’s history of extremism in a Twitter video that criticized Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s secret authorizations, to six US companies, allowing for the sale of nuclear power technology and assistance to Saudi Arabia, as Reuters revealed last week. Gabbard said the move is “both mind-blowing and inexplicable.”

Saudi Arabia is the “primary exporter of jihadist ideology, Wahhabi Salafist ideology that is the motivation and inspiration for terrorist groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda - groups that the Saudis both directly and indirectly support,” Gabbard said. 

The kingdom has been tied to al-Qaeda and extremism in the past, with 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers coming from Saudi Arabia, according to the CIA. In 2015, one of the alleged hijackers, Zacarias Moussaoui, claimed several members of the Saudi royal family had been listed as al-Qaeda donors in the database he worked on under orders of Osama bin Laden, US media reported.

Meanwhile, Lockheed Martin has received a more than $2.4 billion contract from the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to provide Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptors to Saudi Arabia, the US War Department said in a press release.

In November 2018, Saudi Arabia signed a letter of offer and acceptance with the United States for the purchase of the THAAD missile defense system. The $15 billion deal was seen as paving the way for the sale of 44 THAAD launchers, missiles and equipment.

The deal has been aggressively lobbied by the White House, including a personal telephone exchange between US President Donald Trump and Saudi King Salman bin Abdelaziz.

WikiLeaks cables from the US State Department from 2009 revealed “donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.” In a 2014 email, published by WikiLeaks, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Saudi Arabia was “providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region.” It has also supplied weapons to the Wahhabi Daesh [Arabic acronym for "ISIS" / "ISIL"] in Syria. 

Saudi Arabia is reportedly planning to create at least two nuclear power plants, but many are concerned that’s a precursor to developing nuclear weapons, which would further destabilize the region. It was also reported, last year, that Israel was selling Saudi Arabia nuclear secrets.