The Qatari regime is known of its excessive appetite for arms deals with Western governments and companies, to the extent that this has raised many questions mixed with ridicule about the feasibility of purchasing this quantity of weapons for an army that does not exceed the size of a football team, and its functions do not exceed these of a security center or a squad to protect the Emiri Palace and the symbols of the Qatari regime. On the other hand, it can be said that the Qatari regime, through its arm deals, has bought ten tanks, a plane, a warship, twenty pieces of machine guns, five artillery and thousands of bombs and launchers for each element of its army, while this army lacks the efficiency and ability to use these weapons.
Over the past ten years, the Qatari regime has held more than 20 large arms deals in public, while the activities of this regime as well as its security apparatuses confirm that Doha has held dozens of other secret and suspicious arms deals, which raised the concern of the international community and human rights organizations and that which fight terrorism, over the Qatari goals of these huge deals and the parties to which these weapons are being delivered and the beneficiaries of these deals except the arms manufacturers. In the past 10 years, Qatar’s purchase of arms has increased by about 300% compared to the period between 2000 and 2009, which is the period that terrorist activities in the region and the world have increased significantly, proving a link between the increase in the Qatari arms deals and the spread of terrorism.
During the above-mentioned period, Qatar has spent between $80 billion and $110 billion on arms deals according to reports supported by figures and documents, and not to mention the secret arms deals valued at more than $20 billion.
These huge numbers and arms deal when comparing with the Qatari army census, which combat units do not exceed five thousand elements, and with the area of Qatar, which is about 11000 km square, reveal many facts, especially those who received these weapons, particularly the light ones. It is estimated that only 10% of the light weapons have gone and stored in Qatar while the remaining 90% of these weapons have been delivered to terrorist groups, mainly ISIS, Al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood, Shiite organizations in Iraq, Houthis in Yemen, and other organizations in North Africa, particularly in Libya, and recently to Hezbollah in Lebanon and Syria.
What is more dangerous is the possibility of using the heavy weapons, aircrafts and missiles purchased by Qatar with tens of billions, by other countries, especially Iran and Turkey, considering the Qatari conspiracy against Arab interests especially with the deployment of Iranian and Turkish military and security forces and intelligence on the Qatari territory and territorial waters. This poses the greatest threat to Arab national security and regional and global security in general and prompts the international community and global and regional forces to put an end to these movements and Qatari activities as well as freeing Doha from the penetration of Iran and Turkey as well as from the grip of these terrorist regimes and organizations.
The objectives of the Qatari regime from these arm deals is indeed an integral part of Doha’s policy of seeking Western support by paying billions and making deals to win positions and loyalties. Hence, they are in fact political rather than military deals, as well as Qatar’s growing need for weapons recently to be sent to terrorist groups and organizations in more than one place with the aim of creating chaos and threatening the security and stability of the boycotting countries.
Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre
February 13, 2019