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It Doesn’t Add Up

Only the US and China spend more on their military than Saudi Arabia’s $67.6 billion. Iran is a piker at $13.2 billion. Saudi Arabia has 5 E-3 AWACS aircraft with radars that can ‘see’ low-level targets, like terrain following cruise missiles, but they don’t seem to use them much. Despite claims about Iran being the major threat in the region, the Saudis say their air defenses were concentrated in the South.

The Houthi have already made a similar attack on a target more than 800 miles into Saudi territory, so these attacks are within their known skill set. The weapons used have guidance systems, so the direction of the final attack may have more to do with the terrain around the target than the launch point.

The Saudis have equipment but it isn’t clear that they know how to use it. If they knew how to use the tools they had purchased, they would have known where the attack had come from, even if they couldn’t have stopped it.

Iran and Iraq had a very nasty war that included gas attacks and suicide charges between 1980 to 1988, but neither attacked the other’s oil facilities. It makes no sense for Iran to do it now, as they would expect their facilities to be attacked in retaliation. The Saudis have been pounding the Houthi for years, and the Houthi have no major facilities left to lose.

2 comments

1 Shirt { 09.20.19 at 3:19 pm }

With the number of assets we got bobbing in the Persian Gulf we didn’t see them fly by? Really? If that was really true then those selfsame assets best skedaddle before they are targeted themselves. Using the old reliable Occam’s Bone Saw I’d suggest perhaps the Saudis themselves did it.

2 Bryan { 09.20.19 at 9:36 pm }

These are the sorts of threats our defensive systems are designed to protect against on our naval vessels. There is talk that we are going to send troops to Saudi Arabia. The last time we did that it an excuse to fly airliners into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon. The Saudis are not allies. We have no mutual defense treaty with them. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

I would also wonder why some of the parts on display have markings in the Latin alphabet instead of the Persian alphabet?