CAIRO – 19 December 2017: “Qatar is dependent on foreign support including mercenaries,” Washington-based website revealed on Sunday, following several arms deals signed by Doha recently.
On Sunday, Qatar signed a deal with Britain to export 24 Typhoon fighter jets, after two consecutive deals with the U.S. to purchase 36 Boeing F-15QA fighters. France also had its share, signing a deal for 24 Dassault Rafale fighter jets on the opening day of the Doha International Maritime Defense Exhibition and Conference, Defense News magazine reported.
The American magazine mocked Qatar for its lack of armed forces personnel, which will lead to the recruitment of militants in order to compensate for staffing shortage among its military personnel, estimated to be around “27,500 men, including 2,500 from the air force.”
“For decades, GCC states have concluded massive arms deals with the U.S. and other leading Western countries as a form of premium insurance; the GCC helps keep western defense industry jobs, and in return, the West protects the GCC states from external threats,” said Yezid Sayegh, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Middle East Center think tank.
During his visit to Doha on December 7, French President Emmanuel Macron said he agreed on some $14.13 billion deals with Qatar, AP reported.
A French navy Rafale Marine aircraft launches from USS Carl Vinson – Official U.S. Navy Page/Flickr
Qatar also agreed to purchase 490 VBCI armored vehicles from French Nexter.
The U.S. Department of Defense said in a press release that Raytheon, U.S. defense contractor, will install and maintain ‘Patriot’ air defense systems for the armed forces of Qatar, Sputnik reported on December 2.
Raytheon, the world’s largest producer of guided missiles, was awarded a more than $150-million foreign military sales contract to carry out the process.
In an interview with Sky News, former Egyptian Ambassador to Qatar Mohammed al-Menessy said that he found the reason behind Qatar’s keenness to construct Al-Udeid Air Base.
According to Menessy, former Qatari Foreign Minister Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber told him that the real danger for Qatar comes from its Gulf neighbors, especially Saudi Arabia.
An aerial overhead view of “Ops Town” – Al-Udeid Air Base/U.S. Air Force
The Al-Udeid Air Base is a military base established in 1996 in the southwest of Doha. The base hosts more than 11,000 U.S. and coalition service members, and more than 100 aircrafts, according to media reports.
Last October, Somali Garowe Online revealed that the Qatari regime recruited 6,000 Somali soldiers to increase its defense force in addition to hiring Sudanese mercenaries in order to defend and protect Qatar’s Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad in Doha.
On June 5, 2017 Egypt and Saudi, along with several Arab allies, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar in a move that sent shockwaves throughout the Middle East and beyond, including Somalia.
Doha is working on plans to increase its army and eyeing the unemployed youths in poor countries, including Somalia, where it is recruiting low paid soldiers to strengthen its military capability.