Saudi Arabia, US in Talks on Billions in Arms Sales

Trump Wants to Finalize Deals Before Visit to Saudi Kingdom

Reports from US officials familiar with the situation say that the Trump Administration is working to push through billions of dollars in arms sales to Saudi Arabia in the next week or two, with an eye toward having the pacts finalized before Trump’s visit to Riyadh later this month.

Massive civilian death tolls in the Saudi war in Yemen have led some in Congress, as well as a number of human rights groups, to push the US and Saudi Arabia’s other arms dealers to cut back on certain sales related to the war for fear they involve the commission of war crimes.

President Obama had willingly limited the sales a little bit at the very end of his administration, though President Trump has since moved to reverse that, insisting that it would “repair” the relationship damaged by the extremely limited moves by his predecessor to limit the Saudis’ slaughter in Yemen.

With the Saudis looking to spend ever more on war, and the Pentagon looking to join in on the Yemen attack, the Trump Administration appears all too eager to look the other way of the matter of a few thousand civilians killed here or there, particularly if it means he can brag up billions in new sales during his upcoming visit.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.