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Saudi King Threatens to Attack Qatar if it Purchases Russian S-400 AIr Defense System

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posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 06:34 PM
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Qatar is in negotiations to purchase S-400 air defense platforms from Russia. It makes sense after the Gulf Cooperation Council attempted to bully Qatar into submission for daring to not tow the line against Iran. However, this has made the Saudi King upset, and as a result, he is threatening to attack Doha if the deal goes through.


MOSCOW (Reuters) - Qatar is in talks with Moscow to buy Russian S-400 missile air defense systems, Tass state news agency quoted the Qatari ambassador to Russia on Thursday as saying.

Qatar is engaged in a deepening diplomatic row with some of its Gulf Arab neighbors, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), over allegations it supports terrorism, a charge Doha denies.

Since the crisis began last June, Russia has been more active in the region and has sold its missile defense system to other regional powers, including Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

“The answer to this question is yes,” Fahad bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah said in an interview with Tass, when asked if Qatar was planning to buy the S-400 systems. “Talks about the subject are at an advanced stage.”


The S-400 uses four missiles to fill its performance envelope: the very-long-range 40N6 (400 km), the long-range 48N6 (250 km), the medium-range 9M96E2 (120 km) and the short-range 9M96E (40 km). The S-400 was, in 2017, described by The Economist as "one of the best air-defence systems currently made."[4]


According to a report by French daily Le Monde on Friday, King Salman has written a letter to French President Emmanuel Macron, expressing his "profound concern" over ongoing negotiations between Qatar and Russia for the sale of the advanced anti-aircraft weapon system.

The Saudi king noted that Doha's acquisition of S-400 will jeopardize the security interests of Riyadh, urging France to intensify pressure on Qatar in an attempt to prevent the country from purchasing the air defense system.

"[In such a situation], the kingdom would be ready to take all the necessary measures to eliminate this defense system, including military action," King Salman was quoted as saying in the letter.


Turkey has troops stationed at a military base in Qatar. If the Kingdom did at some point decide an attack would be the rational choice, it would be interesting to see how Turkey would play a role in that eventuality. Saudi is a staunch ally and supporter of USA interests. It would be the third strike of Turkey attacking American allies if they were to retaliate. Could we kick Turkey put of NATO at that point??

The Turks consistently harass, attack, and kidnap the Greeks in their own maritime borders. The Turks have attack our Kurdish allies in Northern Syria in the process of grabbing the land that was promised to them by Obama while Syria is being partitioned to outside powers. If they were to assist Qatar defending against the Saudis, that would be strike three from my count. Would that come with any repercussions??




posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 06:58 PM
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a reply to: worldstarcountry

The US & UK also have troops stationed in Qatar at Al Udeid Air Base. This CNN article from last year (HERE) claims that there are around 11,000 US troops there, compared to the 3,000 or so Turkish troops who are currently in Qatar with Qatar's permission (HERE). To put that into perspective, Qatar only has about 310,000 citizens, so that's like 1 US soldier for every 28 Qatari citizens (though Qatar also has about 2 and a half million foreign workers there).

In other words, the real question here is how will the US & UK feel about the potential purchases? Qatar currently spends a lot of money on Western defense contracts, with that number increasing dramatically since the recent Saudi-Qatar beef started. So I would imagine that the UK & US wouldn't allow anyone to topple Qatar as long as they also kept buying our weapons & security services.

And for the record, I'd take most Saudi threats with a grain of salt. It wasn't that long ago when they threatened that Lebanon had declared war on them after they abducted the Lebanese Prime Minister Hariri (all HERE). Yet they later released Hariri, no war was declared by either side, and most people here have already forgotten about the "crisis". And remember their 24 hour ultimatum against Qatar when this current beef started (HERE)? Next week will mark the 1 year anniversary of that and they still haven't followed through on their implied threats.

The Saudis are still having a hard time in Yemen and are seemingly balking at taking a bigger role in Syria. Yet they're going to open up a new military front in Qatar? At most, I'd expect them to do a small attack and then beg the UN or West to step in. But I have my doubts that they would even go that far.



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 07:25 PM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant
well I can't argue against any of that. I tend to be a little bit insulted when our alleged allies buy Russian before American though. Maybe they can drop an errant round when they take delivery in a couple years. Offer to have insurance pay for a NATO replacement



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 07:37 PM
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originally posted by: worldstarcountry
a reply to: enlightenedservant
well I can't argue against any of that. I tend to be a little bit insulted when our alleged allies buy Russian before American though. Maybe they can drop an errant round when they take delivery in a couple years. Offer to have insurance pay for a NATO replacement


One would think the Turks have a hand in convincing Qatar to make this purchase. Qatar has been financing numerous groups, especially in Africa, that the U.S. has been trying to counter. If my understanding is correct, Qatar is second only to Iran in funding proxy groups.

The trouble is the usual bureaucratic 'think', to wit, stop selling military supplies to Qatar and Russia will fill the void.Keeps our MIC happy, as well.

Sigh.



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 07:55 PM
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a reply to: nwtrucker

Very strange situation here indeed

As you mention Qatar supposedly supports groups the US is trying to destroy or counter yet they have a base in Qatar!

Figure that out

It looks like Qatar is trying to be too big for its own britches. Or trying to placate too many different sides.

If you’re on too many sides of the fence then the walls can come tumbling down on you



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 08:13 PM
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a reply to: worldstarcountry

you seem to overlook the fact that we have a base in Qatar also, and they are our ally too.
can't help but wonder, just how difficult would it become to convince countries to allow us to set up shop in their country after we abused the kindness that qatar has shown us against them and used that base to support an incursion by the Saudis.

I also can't help but wonder.... first kirshner was denied Qatar for a rather large loan and we ended up supporting a blockade of the country. then for some strange reason they decided to give him the loan, and we became much friendlier to the country.... what, did he lose his loan, decide he wanted more money and was refused, or what... so now, it's let's have a war???

www.vanityfair.com...

www.businessinsider.com...



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 09:00 PM
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originally posted by: Willtell
a reply to: nwtrucker

Very strange situation here indeed

As you mention Qatar supposedly supports groups the US is trying to destroy or counter yet they have a base in Qatar!

Figure that out

It looks like Qatar is trying to be too big for its own britches. Or trying to placate too many different sides.

If you’re on too many sides of the fence then the walls can come tumbling down on you


Agreed. I'd hazard to guess that the Saudi King wouldn't have made these comments without some form of tacit agreement from the U.S..



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 09:18 PM
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a reply to: worldstarcountry

Is there a reason our allies can't also buy goods from other countries? Many of our European allies buy energy supplies and a lot of other goods from from Russia. In fact, this boring PDF says that in 2017, the EU did around $231 billion worth of trade with Russia (on page 2). So should someone "accidentally" drop an errand round on their countries during our next NATO drills?



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 10:10 PM
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"If you buy weapons to defend yourself we'll have to attack you!"

What kind of logic is that?



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 10:19 PM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant

Interoperability. As it stands now, the US or NATO can ship weapons to where they're needed, and any aircraft used by NATO can use them. Their aircraft can link with other aircraft and ground systems as well. Russian weapons use different power buses, and data systems. They'd have to modify all their aircraft to use them, or have a handful of aircraft that could only be used in certain situations.



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 10:31 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

But I asked if there's a reason they "can't", not "shouldn't". As in, is Qatar legally obligated to not purchase Russian systems?

For example, here's an article from March that goes over Russia's increasing defense cooperation with Qatar. It says the following:

As Russia has been improving relationships with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in recent months, Moscow’s decision to sell sophisticated weaponry to Qatar comes with considerable risk of backlash. Russia’s efforts to strengthen its relationship with Qatar can be explained by Doha’s unique appeal as a trade partner and its potential to assist Moscow’s conflict-arbitration efforts in the Middle East.

Although the Qatari Investment Authority possesses a $2.5 billion stake in Russia’s oil industry, recent trade negotiations between Russia and Qatar have focused primarily on the defense sector. Since the start of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) blockade against Qatar in June, Doha has upgraded its military capabilities to defend itself against what it perceives as aggressive actions from Saudi Arabia and the UAE. As the United States has been reluctant to antagonize Qatar’s GCC rivals by contributing greatly to Doha’s military modernization efforts, Qatar has aggressively courted Russian military assistance.

To demonstrate its willingness to purchase air defense systems from Russia, the Qatari Defense Ministry signed a landmark military technology sharing agreement with Moscow in October. Russia has swiftly converted this rhetorical pledge into arms contract negotiations, as Qatar has been a more amenable partner for Moscow to negotiate with than Turkey or Saudi Arabia.

Even though the United States has attempted to deter Turkey from purchasing S-400 missiles from Moscow, Washington has not tried to obstruct Qatar’s proposed S-400 deal with Russia.
The US government’s silence on Qatar’s S-400 negotiations has increased Doha’s appeal as a Russian arms client, as Qatar is much less likely than Turkey or Saudi Arabia to backtrack on its arms deals with Russia due to external interference.

Russia, Qatar move forward on military cooperation



posted on Jun, 1 2018 @ 11:37 PM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant

And the answer is the same. Some treaties have included that they are required to buy weapons that require no modification to existing systems, unless there is no existing system that meets their requirements, or the available systems are above a certain price point compared to other systems.



posted on Jun, 2 2018 @ 01:35 AM
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Sounds like all the more reason for Qatar to buy the system to me.

Then they can swat the Saudis expensive but incompetent Air Force out of the sky if they try anything.



posted on Jun, 2 2018 @ 02:26 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Which treaties specifically including Qatar? If you actually read the link I posted, not only does it directly say that the US isn't trying to obstruct the S-400 sale to Qatar, but the very next paragraph from what I quoted talks about Saudi Arabia's own $3 billion arms deal with Russia. From that same link:

In addition, Qatar’s recent purchases of SY-400 missiles from China highlighted its ability to swiftly procure sophisticated weaponry from foreign arms vendors. As the Kremlin’s $3 billion arms contract with Saudi Arabia will not be completely implemented until 2021, Doha’s track record of implementing swift covert arms purchases appeals greatly to Kremlin policymakers.

So your answer appears to be insufficient.



posted on Jun, 2 2018 @ 02:30 AM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant

You said "allies". Some treaties are written that way, not all of them. It depends on how closely the two are tied. Qatar has basing agreements with the US, but not the close ties we have with other allies.



posted on Jun, 2 2018 @ 02:45 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Come on, man. Look at the context. The thread is about Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Both of them are our allies, both of them buy Western defense products and services, and both are apparently buying Russian defense products too. That's the underlying theme to our posts here.



You said "allies"

I also can't "can't" not "shouldn't", which implies legal requirements & restrictions. So if Qatar has no legal restrictions on buying Russian defense goods and/or services, then this back & forth is meaningless anyway.



posted on Jun, 2 2018 @ 02:53 AM
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edit on 6/2/2018 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 3 2018 @ 05:31 PM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant
When it comes to defense equipment that secures the borders and an alliance, it needs to stay within the alliance.



posted on Jun, 3 2018 @ 06:00 PM
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originally posted by: worldstarcountry
a reply to: enlightenedservant
When it comes to defense equipment that secures the borders and an alliance, it needs to stay within the alliance.

Like I posted above, clearly the US govt doesn't feel that way in regards to Qatar and Saudi Arabia because it's not trying to prevent this S-400 sale to Qatar or the $3 billion defense deal between Russia and Saudi Arabia. You can't take the terms of one alliance and assume they match the terms of all alliances.



posted on Jun, 3 2018 @ 07:45 PM
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a reply to: enlightenedservant
Maybe there is a different angle. Maybe we are encouraging the purchase of this system to study it better on the pass through and learn to combat it more efficiently through electronic as well as kinetic means.



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