Last week’s terrorist attack by a Saudi military official in the United States for training has stirred many politicians, pundits, and citizens to question whether we should be bringing in foreign nationals for training. They are given access to sensitive military equipment, locations, and most importantly personnel. The easiest path for terrorism against the United States military is to sneak in rather than face us head-to-head.
Saudi Arabia may be an important nation with whom we must maintain a relationship, but it’s a stretch to call them an ally. Time after time, their citizens engage in actions that seem counterproductive to the relationship Washington DC has with Riyadh. We don’t seem to have the same problem with other allies. In this regard, Saudi Arabia stands alone, which prompted Senator Rand Paul to ask some questions and make a statement.
Hmmm….15 Saudis attack us on 9/11. The Saudi government kills a US journalist. A Saudi pilot in training kills 3 of our soldiers. Can anyone spot the common thread? My take: It’s way past time to quit arming and training the Saudis!https://t.co/TqUSxDRTuT
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) December 8, 2019
The Senator linked to an article about the alleged terrorist’s mini-manifesto he posted on Twitter, saying, “Hmmm….15 Saudis attack us on 9/11. The Saudi government kills a US journalist. A Saudi pilot in training kills 3 of our soldiers. Can anyone spot the common thread? My take: It’s way past time to quit arming and training the Saudis!”
He is correct. We don’t need to open our gates or fly in the Saudi military to engage in training. In fact, it’s a valid argument that they have plenty of hands-on-training accumulated over the decades. It’s 2019. We have the technology to engage in face-to-face training without being in the same nation, let alone the same base or even the same room.
With speculation floating around that alleged terrorist Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani did not act alone, it calls for our policies regarding arming and training Saudis to be thoroughly reviewed at the very least. We’ve given them many chances to help us fight the war on terror, and while they are active partners, their people continuously pop up as wolves in sheep’s clothing.
A temporary hold is not enough. It’s time to end our one-sided military relationship with Saudi Arabia indefinitely. We can help them if they’re attacked and expect the same from them, but let’s keep them at arm’s length.
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