In 2010, the Obama administration approved a covert arms deal between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, a U.N. Security Council member.
The $1.9 billion deal, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, would be a $10 billion deal between the U.K.-based Kingdom Arms Group, a major U.A.E. arms manufacturer, and Saudi Arabia’s Al-Udeid Air Base.
The Saudi deal would allow Saudi Arabia to supply U.Y.V. missiles and fighter jets to U.AE.
The U.D.A.-led Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) had secretly been tasked with building up the Saudi air force.
Saudi Arabia, which has ties to al-Qaeda and is a U to A state sponsor of terrorism, was also expected to provide the UAE with anti-tank weapons.
JSOC, led by Gen. Paul Selva, is the largest U.R.S.-led Special Operations military coalition in the world, having deployed more than 6,400 troops to the region and counting, according to Pentagon officials.
The deal was approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a senior U.M.S., and the U/A.A., a Saudi intelligence-sharing group.
It was not clear how much of the deal’s financing was covert.
“There’s a lot of money involved,” said former JSOC commander Col. Peter Newsham, who retired in 2011.
“I don’t think you can have a single element in the Pentagon with the power to decide what’s covert and what’s not.”
But as the Trump administration ramps up its campaign to combat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the UAE deal could be a key piece of a potential strategy.
“The Saudis are in a position to make a major contribution to the counter-ISIS coalition,” said Paul Cruickshank, the senior fellow at the Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution.
“This would be part of a larger effort to secure the U./A.
Gulf region, and to provide some kind of support for that effort.”
Newshamp, who served as a military intelligence officer in the URS in the 1980s, said the Saudis have had an outsized role in the fight against ISIS.
“We have the largest and most powerful military in the region, with the largest number of troops in the entire world,” he said.
“If you want to get in their pocket, they’re the ones who are going to get you there.”
He said the Uruzgan government was “very supportive of the UyV” alliance, which he called a “fiercely loyal” ally.
“It’s like they’ve been fighting for the Saudis in the Gulf for years,” he added.
The Washington Post reported that the UYV and the UAE “are the biggest arms buyers in the Middle East.”
A senior official with the Saudi Ministry of Defense told the newspaper that the Saudis had been “in regular contact” with U.U.A./A., and that the two sides were “in frequent contact with each other.”
The official said the deal “was approved in accordance with our security needs.”
The UYVs, however, were not the only Saudi-U.S./A partners that have made significant military and intelligence contributions to the UARs war against ISIS in the Persian Gulf.
“Saudi Arabia has been involved in many different conflicts,” Newshan said.
The Kingdom Arms deal, he said, was a “small but significant” part of the total Saudi involvement in the war in the country.
The State Department told the AP that it “did not have any information regarding a Uruzan connection to the Saudi-A.EA Saudi program.”
Newham also said that the UAE was not involved in the deal.
“They haven’t been involved at all in U.
Saudi Arabia,” he noted.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Trump has said that his administration is pursuing a new policy to fight ISIS and that he wants Saudi Arabia involved in its military operations.
“No matter how big the military effort is, it’s not going to be successful without the help of the United States, and we’re going to have to be willing to do that,” Trump told Fox News.
“And we’re not going anywhere without them.”
The Trump administration has also taken aim at the UAE’s role in supporting U.B.C.A.’s support of the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
Last week, the administration accused the UAE of “supporting ISIL by facilitating its use of the Kingdom Arms contract to sell sophisticated weaponry and training.”
“The UAE has been a significant arms supplier to ISIL, providing arms, training, financial support, and weapons to ISIL