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Senate Narrowly Defeats a Resolution that Would Have Blocked U.S. Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia

June 13, 2017 (EIRNS)—The Senate voted 53 to 47, today, against a resolution of disapproval that would have blocked the sale of $500 million worth of air-dropped munitions to Saudi Arabia. The resolution, which was co-sponsored by Senators Rand Paul (R-Ky.) Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), and Al Franken (D-Minn.), specifically addressed the proposed sale of GPS guidance kits for air-dropped bombs, fuses for those bombs, and laser-guided bombs.

A similar resolution, last Fall, garnered only 27 votes. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer’s announcement yesterday, that he would support the resolution, undoubtedly helped to lift the vote in its favor.

Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) argued that the guidance kits were necessary so that the Saudi Air Force could bomb targets more accurately in Yemen and not kill civilians. Sen. Paul rejected that argument, pointing out that the Saudi bombing of a funeral observance in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa, last October, was no accident. That bombing killed 125 people and wounded over 500 others and was clearly aimed at the Houthi leadership that was present at the gathering. "This was no mistake," Paul said. "This was no error." Furthermore, the Saudis put protestors in jail, they behead and crucify them, they supported ISIS, and, "They are the greatest purveyors of hatred of Christianity and Judaism," Paul said. "We don’t have to encourage their behavior by selling them weapons."