InternationalMiddle East

Deployment of Greek Patriot systems in Saudi Arabia


Greece recently announced that Greece would send the Patriot missile air defense system and 120 of its personnel to Saudi Arabia on loan for an indefinite period of time.

The agreement to send Greek Patriot systems to Saudi Arabia was signed in April (April / May) and is a step forward in cooperation between Greece and the Arab countries of the Persian Gulf.

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias claims that “this is a great step for our country in terms of cooperation with the Arab countries of the Persian Gulf, and also contributes to the greater security of energy resources for the West.”

“Patriot systems are not offensive weapons; they are defense systems and are not directed against any country, but defend airspace,” the Greek foreign minister said in justifying Athens’ move.

The head of the Greek Joint Chiefs of Staff, Constantine Flores, also confirmed in a Twitter message that Patriot air defense systems had been sent to Saudi Arabia, and that he had sent pictures of the systems and the Greek forces to launch them in Saudi Arabia.

Without mentioning Saudi Arabia’s seven-year war against the oppressed people of Yemen, Florus claimed that “the mission of the system sent to Saudi Arabia is to maintain peace and stability, especially in the Middle East.”

This Greek move is the latest sign of increased cooperation between Athens and Riyadh; In March, the Saudi Air Force sent F-15 fighter jets to the Greek island of Crete to take part in the “Eye of Falcon 1” exercise over the Mediterranean Sea.

In addition to increasing military cooperation with Saudi Arabia, Greece also seeks to expand its cooperation with the United Arab Emirates; The UAE also deployed fighter jets to Crete in August 2020 amid rising tensions between Greece and Turkey over disputes over maritime borders and oil resources in the eastern Mediterranean.

A few days ago, the American “Wall Street Journal” published a report emphasizing that Washington’s concern about the missile and drone strikes of Yemeni forces on military structures and targets deep in the territory of Saudi Arabia is growing, so Washington intends To keep his forces safe, as well as the Patriot and Todd air defense systems, to get them out of Saudi Arabia (and practically out of the Yemeni war).

Noting that the United States was concerned about the lives of its troops in Saudi Arabia because of the attacks, the paper said that the United States had withdrawn its troops from Saudi Arabia under former (and belligerent) President Donald Trump. has started.

According to reports and statistics, there are about 20,000 US troops in various ranks in Saudi Arabia, which according to the new strategy of “Joe Biden”, these forces must leave the country.

Al-Bawaba Al-Akhbariya Al-Alamiyah news website also reported that what strengthens the possibility of the withdrawal of American troops from Saudi Arabia is the announcement of the dismantling of the US Patriot and Todd anti-missile systems; In addition, Washington’s political and diplomatic moves in the Arab Gulf states must be taken into account.

The Associated Press reported last Saturday that despite continued Ansar al-Yemeni airstrikes and missiles on Saudi Arabia (military and economic centers), the United States has deployed much of its missile defense system in recent weeks. Has taken out.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby confirmed to the Associated Press that “the US air defense system is moving out of Saudi Arabia,” but said the United States had a “broad and deep” commitment to its allies in the Middle East. .

“The Department of Defense continues to support the ‘United States’s interests and its regional partnerships, maintaining tens of thousands of strong forces and positions in the Middle East that represent some of our most advanced air and naval forces, but at the same time Kirby,” he said. US interests did not pay attention to the thousands of kilometers between West Asia and the United States!

With the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan after 20 years of occupation during the Biden era, and the subsequent decision to withdraw US troops from Saudi Arabia who fought alongside the Saudis and Emirati in the Yemeni war and the killing of Yemenis, it seems that Washington’s policy in the region has shifted from direct to indirect presence, which will be fully confirmed if US aggressors withdraw from Iraq and Syria.

During his campaign, US President Joe Biden announced that he intended to withdraw US troops from the West Asian region, which was partly due to the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan after 20 years of aggression and looting, but still a large part. These forces have not left the region and the possibility of the withdrawal of US aggressors from Syria and Iraq is unlikely, although it is not unlikely, but the important issue in between is the hasty and possible withdrawal of US troops from Saudi Arabia such as Afghanistan. , Will shock Al Saud, an action that has not yet begun, but has taken sleep and sleep from Saudi officials, as Riyadh officials, backed by the United States and countries such as the UAE, invaded Yemen and destroyed the country for more than seven years. اند.

Experts in the region believe that Greece, with US coordination, must have transferred Patriot systems to Saudi Arabia, as Athens could not do so without Washington’s permission, which would also reduce the staggering costs of a direct US presence in the region. And their human losses.

Certainly, the American Democrats, led by Joe Biden, like the American people, are tired of the bloody interventions of the US military in recent decades, especially in West Asia, and with the withdrawal of US troops from the target countries to replace Allied forces. They are themselves.

It remains to be seen whether the US invading forces will withdraw from Iraq and Syria, or whether the US president’s claims will remain mere words.

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