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The Bush administration will announce next week a series of arms deals worth at least $20 billion to Saudi Arabia and five other oil-rich Persian Gulf states as well as new 10-year military aid packages to Israel and Egypt, a move to shore up allies in the Middle East and counter Iran's rising influence, U.S. officials said yesterday.
...The arms deals have quietly been under discussion for months despite U.S. disappointment over Saudi Arabia's failure to support the Iraqi government and to bring that country's Sunni Muslims into the reconciliation process.