On Saturday, the Saudi Arabian government beheaded 47 people, one of whom was prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, a senior opposition figure. He and the others were all killed for their charges of “undermining the national security” of the kingdom.
Immediately following the beheadings, countries across the globe–except for the United States– denounced the barbaric move.
Rightfully outraged with the beheadings, Shiite Muslims in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon and Bahrain angrily condemned the executions, and Iranian protesters stormed the Saudi embassy in Tehran.
These inhumane acts of murder on the part of the Saudis have forced the hands of those who sell them weapons and on Monday, Germany became the first country to question their arms trade deal.
“We must now review whether in the future we should take a more critical stance” on selling arms to Saudi Arabia, German Vice Chancellor, Sigmar Gabriel said Monday.
While Germany has said they will review their decision, Belgium just took it a step further on Tuesday, by immediately declining Saudi Arabia’s request for military equipment supplies.
“We have rejected the request [for military equipment supplies to Saudi Arabia],” Geert Bourgeois told the Flemish Parliament, as quoted by the RTBF broadcaster. “If there is a possibility that the weapons may be used for internal repression, I refuse.”
The moves by Germany to advocate for a review, and Belgium to renounce the selling of weapons to such a repressive regime are heartening and should be a model for all those involved in arming a country who beheads more people than ISIS.
Of course, the US is not about to give up their largest weapons export contract, even if the weapons are used to oppress entire nations and murder their children.
Immediately after the beheadings, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce took to CNN to blame the Saudi’s executions on Iranians.
As Daniel McAdams reports for the Ron Paul Institute, Royce falsely claimed that the Iranian military invaded Yemen. But that is demonstrably untrue. It was the Saudis who invaded Yemen.
It seems that the Saudi influence over the United States is far and wide, even spreading to the presidential candidates, who all curtsey to “our Saudi ally” by pledging their blind support of the terrorist regime.
It’s no coincidence that President Obama was showered with $1.3 million in gifts from the Saudi King last year. Obama is responsible for forging the largest weapons sale in American history, all of which went to Saudi Arabia.
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