Do We Arm Dictatorial Regimes To Kill Protesters?

I have always been pretty skeptical about the Arab Spring in the Middle East. The way the US pretended that we had allies in Libya who wanted “freedom” against Gaddafi was especially implausible. We basically armed terrorists; perhaps even with the same weapons they used to kill our ambassador.

Gaddafi was not a good guy, but taking sides between him and terrorists makes no sense. It makes even less sense that he had been received by the West because he responded to our calls to renounce weapons of mass destruction. He did what we asked and then we killed him at a time when we are allegedly trying to get another nation to give up their plans to develop WMD.

But as much as I think it was evil to support armed jihadists against the secular dictator, I think it would have been just as evil to sell arms to the dictator while he was persecuting his own people with soldiers and weapons. But that is exactly what we have been doing in Bahrain. The only real difference is that, rather than a secular ruling regime, the royal government of Bahrain is Sunni Muslim oppressing a majority of Sunni that the rule.

When Bahrain experienced some “Arab Spring,” we sold them some “lawnmowers” so the regime could mow them down. ProPublica reports:

“Despite Bahrain’s bloody crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, the U.S. has continued to provide weapons and maintenance to the small Mideast nation. Defense Department documents released to ProPublica give the fullest picture yet of the arms sales: The list includes ammunition, combat vehicle parts, communications equipment, Blackhawk helicopters, and an unidentified missile system.”

This was stuff was sold through the Pentagon at a time not to different when we were instituting regime change in Libya because Gaddafi was attacking “his own people.” Throwing our weight behind dynastic ruling regime is an odd way of supporting democracy. Perhaps we’d be more credible if we could at least pretend to have a single standard of behavior.

Since the ruling dynasty of Bahrain is Sunni, our support for that government is pretty much the same as our support for Saudi Arabia. Does our state department think that, when we claim to support democracy in the Middle East, other people are unaware of our hypocrisy?

The State Department claims to have denied a few toys to Bahrain, and the Pentagon insists that all its gear is designed for fighting external threats, not the Shiites chafing under Sunni royalty. But there is reason to doubt that the Bahrain government or their US supporters would admit the truth if they did help Bahrain crack down on protestors.

“There have been reports that Bahrain used American-made helicopters to fire on protesters in the most intense period of the crackdown. Time magazine reported in mid-March 2011 that Cobra helicopters had conducted “live ammunition air strikes” on protesters. The new Defense Department list of arms sales has two entries related to “AH-1F Cobra Helicopters” in March and April 2011. Neither the exact equipment or services being sold nor the delivery timetable are specified.”

So maybe that is just a coincidence. But it still seems strange that we must offer an unelected, authoritarian regime support of any kind,







Comments

comments

Mark Horne was born in Melbourne, Florida, but has also lived in Liberia, West Africa, and Kwajalein, Marshall Islands before graduating from high school. He is an experienced editor and freelance writer, working with Gary DeMar, George Grant, Chuck Colson, and many others. He earned a Master of Divinity from Covenant Theological Seminary and has pastored in Washington State, Oklahoma, and St. Louis, Missouri. Mark is a prolific writer and the author of a layperson's commentary on the Gospel of Mark, a tract on baptism, and a biography of J.R. R. Tolkien. He currently resides in the St. Louis area.

Posted in Corruption, Islam, Middle East, Military, National Security Tagged with: , , , , ,
  • DockyWocky

    Its the same old same old. The buddy buddy network.

    It is amazing to see how deeply islam has insinuated itself into our defense systems. Amazing, and frightening.

  • Bobseeks

    I would not spend a lot of time crying about “oppression” in muslim countries because all muslim groups are oppressors or wannabe oppressors. That is the nature of islam.

    • Mudpuppy

      Amen. There is not now, nor has there ever been, nor will there ever be freedom in any country where Islam rules. The two are diametrically opposed and are incompatible. Let them oppress and kill each other. There is nothing we can (or should) do about it anyway. Only when they throw off that evil death cult will they have the ability to be free. If that ever happens. That’s why Afghanistan and Iraq are lost causes.

  • CP5thgrp

    We don’t but, Congress does

    • Mike6

      Obama bombed Libya without Congressional approval. Ghadaffi was a dictator, a pragmatist, and an American friend. Ghadaffi would have NEVER allowed four brave Americans to be trapped and murdered in Bengazi. Only someone as stupid and incompetent as Hillary and Obama would have allowed such a disaster. Obama bombed Libya, betrayed an old friend, and got four American murdered, and he SHOULD BE IMPEACHED.

  • obhfwb

    obama and islam are like a vacuum cleaner, they both suck.

  • The Old Man

    If they get all our guns, they can do that to us too…. they have started today.

  • Carl Stevenson

    Our own authoritarian, totalitarian regieme’s supports others … What’s so surprising about that?

  • http://www.survivingurbancrisis.com/ Silas Longshot

    Obama, being a muzlim himself, has said he would and is ‘siding with izlam’.
    http://theobamafile.com/

  • martianpoet

    already labeled as a conspiracy theorist by the socialists power grabbers and democracy killers in Washington, DC, I offer a conclusion based on the “facts” available — our ambassador’s death appears to have been a convenient way of avoiding his forced testimony in a Congressional hearing about Libya and Syria and the US Government arming of Al Queda and other muslim terrorists without Congressional approval, which violations of Law could end up with impeachment or charges of treason. As the old Texan used to say “You play with snakes long enough you’re gonna get bit”

  • Mudpuppy

    I could care less if Shiites are “chafing” under Sunni rule. Both are worthless scum. However, we should not be supporting anyone over there. It’s a lose-lose proposition. Anyone who thought the “Arab Spring” was about democracy is deluding themselves. It never was. It’s about replacing “secular” regimes with Islamic terrorist (redundant) ones. I’m all for leaving them alone to slaughter each other. I have no problem with that.

  • Progressive Republican

    Do We Arm Dictatorial Regimes To Kill Protesters?

    Seriously? Under what rock has this author been hiding? This has been part and parcel for American foreign policy since shortly after WWII. Liberals and progressives have complained bitterly against these policies to no little avail.

    Nice to see the “right” catching up. Only sixty years or so behind.

  • James E. Huddlestun

    Obama’s job is to further world domination by radical islamist. Bankrupt, disarm destroy.