Middle East Tactical Report

 
IL Serge Pod #20.09.2001 08:18
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Serge Pod

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Middle East Tactical Report
17 September 2001
Jordan

Following his recent visit to Moscow, Russian military sources say King Abdullah is seriously envisaging buying Russian weapons. According to these sources, the King had expressed a desire to buy light weapons, police equipment and MU-4 and MU-7 helicopters, which Washington would not oppose. Yet the sources ruled out the possibility of seeing Jordan as a buyer of advanced weapons such as S-300 air defence systems or anti-tank Kornet missiles.

Libya

Egyptian diplomatic sources say Libya intends to sell most of its Russian-made helicopters such as Mi-6, Mi-14 and Mi-24. Libya is believed to be holding talks in this regard with a number of Africa countries, while concurrently holding talks with Russia for the purchase of advanced helicopters such as K-5, Mi-28 and Mi-35.

Syria/Armenia

Syria and Armenia signed on 27/08/01 a military cooperation agreement at the end of a visit by Armenian Defence Minister Serge Sarkisyan to Damascus. The agreement is thought to have to do with Armenian assistance to upgrade some of Syria's tanks, particularly the T-62 MBTs.

Special Issue – the US terrorist attacks and the Middle East

"The biggest US intelligence failure since Pearl Harbour", "America's greatest humiliation since its defeat in Vietnam", "the international Islamists movement's most spectacular piece of 'propaganda by the act' since the overthrow of the Shah" – Tuesday's terror attacks against the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon seem to be describable only with superlatives. As the shock waves spread out from New York and Washington, new ramifications become apparent by the day. Tactical reporT has decided to devote an entire Weekly Brief to reviewing the implications for the Middle East. Subscribers to the Weekly Brief may also like to know that the current Tactical Report Monthly Supplement is devoted to an appraisal of the recent clandestine congress of Lebanon's Hizbullah, at which the party's military organisation appears to have begun to reorient towards preparing suicide attacks in Israel/Palestine. Single issues of the Monthly Supplement may be ordered by e-mail from Middle East Tactical Studies (METS@tacticalstudies.com).

News Briefs

Afghanistan:

Plans for GSM network scuppered

Algeria:

President, Oil Minister cancel trip to US

Jordan:

King cancels trip to US to ask for drones

Kuwait:

Defence Minister hopes to maintain visits to US, France, UK

Libya:

Qaddafi promises intelligence sharing with US, son postpones Paris trip

Oman:

UK-Omani manoeuvres to be maintained – for the time being

UAE:

Fears for relationship with US

Insight

The Saudi connection

Riyadh's very low-key reaction to the terror attacks against its main ally points to a gathering crisis in US-Saudi relations, and sheds new light on the dismissal of intelligence chief Prince Turki Al-Faysal.

Focus

Mid-East perspectives

In so far as radical Islamists are held responsible, the attacks on New York and Washington are likely to have important consequences for Washington's Mid-East alliances and may push the entire region closer to a generalised conflict.

REF XQQMA XQQIE


In knowledge we trust!  
IL Serge Pod #01.10.2001 08:18
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Serge Pod

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Middle East Tactical Report
25 September 2001
LIBYA: Col. Qaddafi's public expression of "condolences to the US people" and his call on Libyans to "think about how to channel aid to those who were harmed … whatever the political disputes and struggles with the United States" have received extensive international coverage. Usually well informed Libyan sources suggest that Qaddafi has issued instructions to the effect that no effort is to be spared – up to and including the sharing of intelligence – in attempting to use the occasion to win US good will and advance towards normalisation. Meanwhile, the Leader's son Sayfulislam Qaddafi has postponed a visit to Paris, scheduled for 20/09, in order to focus on efforts back home to gather aid and blood for the US victims. Although his planned trip to France was ostensibly concerned with cultural affairs, Sayfulislam is also believed to have sought meetings with Thomson-CSF, Alcatel and a branch of EADS.

UAE: Despite the slump in the US civil aviation industry following last week's terror attacks in the US, there have so far been no major cancellations by participants in this November's Dubai 2001 air show. On the contrary, there has reportedly been a significant increase in interest from firms in the aviation security field and from Russian manufacturers. With American firms believed to have booked some 25% of available floor space at Dubai 2001, there are fears that new State Department travel warning might disrupt the event, but so far most US participants have been keen to show that it is 'business as usual' in the Gulf.

KUWAIT: In light of the US government's commitment to helping its aviation industry overcome the severe downturn provoked by last week's terror attacks, Kuwait is expected to come under irresistible pressure from Washington to place an order for Boeing's AH-64 Apache helicopter. This, in turn, may leave the door open to British and French suppliers for future orders of VIP and transport helicopters. There are also indications that Washington will seize the opportunity to push the Kuwaitis to buy American when it comes to awarding contracts for the planned new C4I system.


Kuwait

Emir Jaber Al-Ahmed Al Sabah of Kuwait suffered a brain haemorrhage earlier today (21/09) and will be flown to Britain for treatment, according to an official palace statement carried by Kuwaiti TV. According to the statement, the Emir was "fully conscious and not in intensive care", but at the age of 73 Sheikh Jaber's health has been visibly declining of late. With Sheikh Jaber's nominal successor, Crown Prince Sa'd Al-Abdullah, himself increasingly sidelined due to worsening health problems, the succession process could prove complicated should the Emir die or be lastingly incapacitated. Several senior ministers and ruling family members are reported to be returning home from visits abroad.

GCC:

New prospects for Dolphin as Qatar and Bahrain pencil gas pipe agreement

Kuwait:

Intense US pressure expected on helicopters and C4I

Libya:

Arms-for-oil deal with Ukraine possible following E. Europe visits

Oman:

Sultan orders follow up of military-industrial cooperation with Pakistan

Saudi Arabia:

Army chief discusses politics, electronic warfare in low-profile trip to France

UAE:

Dubai air show bookings hold up, new interest from aviation security sector Interior Ministry hi-tech ID card programme to be accelerated

Insight

Libya: NOC restructures, purge mooted. As details emerge of the government's plans to restructure the National Oil Company before the end of this year, there are signs that a purge of NOC cadres may take place.

Kuwait: Defence Minister visits Europe. After much hesitation, Defence Minister Sheikh Jaber began a trip to France and the UK this week which has as much to do with politics as with procurement.

Focus

pSaudi Arabia: America's mistrusted ally. On the eve of Bush's anti-terrorist 'war', a serious crisis is brewing in US-Saudi relations. Crown Prince Abdullah mistrusts US intentions – and the feeling is mutual.


REF XQQMA XQQIE
DSD
In knowledge we trust!  
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israel

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★★
и как Армения может помоч в модернизации сирийских танков?
Помните, что война с арабами - это война ловушек, засад и убийств из-за угла. (с) Атос, граф де ла Фер ( с помощью А. Дюма)  
IL Serge Pod #17.10.2001 08:36
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Serge Pod

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Middle East Tactical Report
16 October 2001
Saudi Arabia

According to Saudi diplomatic sources, Riyadh has put plans to purchase light weapons from Italy on hold following Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi's much publicised comments on the 'inferiority' of Islam. Usually well informed sources add that all Italian projects are likely to be affected and may be cancelled outright, with even the largest (the construction of three hospitals for the National Guard) in jeopardy.

Libya

Director of Civil Aviation Kamal Marqan has been removed from his post and placed under house arrest. Last June at the Le Bourget air show in Paris, Marqan is accused of negotiating a preliminary agreement for the purchase of Airbus aircraft for Libyan Arab Airways without having been mandated to do so by Tripoli. He is also said to have negotiated for himself a 5% commission on all future LAA orders.

Dubai Air Show – ISTAR conference extended

The regional fallout from last month's terror attacks in the US does not seem to have deterred exhibitors and speakers from attending the Middle East Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition & Reconnaissance (ISTAR) conference during the Dubai 2001 international aerospace exhibition. Indeed, the increased topicality of and interest in the subject has prompted the organisers to expand the conference programme to include two afternoon sessions and a workshop from the UK MoD Air Defence Advisory Team. The latter – made up of serving RAF officers specialising in C3I systems, fighter operations, air surveillance radar, Electronic Warfare, Ground Based Air Defence, internal security and ground defences – aims to provide assistance on AD systems and operations to friendly foreign countries through all stages of the development of AD structures, organisation and procurement. Scheduled for 03/11, the ISTAR conference's keynote speaker is UAE Air Force Commander Brig. Khaled Abdullah Al-Bu'aynayn.

Also in Tactical Report Vol.8, N°36, Friday, October 12, 2001

News Briefs

Kuwait: - French regional procurement chief dissatisfied with visit
Libya: - NOC 'purge' – latest developments
Iraq: - Vice President to lose authority over oil deals?
Saudi Arabia: - Riyadh said to have renewed calls for extradition of UK-based dissident
UAE: - UOG reviewing circumstances of award of desalination plant contract

Insight

Saudi Arabia: Crown Prince's bкte noire. Intelligence sharing with the US seems to be working at last, but mistrust persists at the highest levels. And it's personal.

Libya: cooperation with US and UK. Following contacts between Libya's intelligence chief and the CIA and MI6, Libyan-British relations are blossoming.

Focus

Middle East: Bush's Balfour Declaration. Although timed to serve short-term goals, the Bush Administration's announcement that it supports Palestinian statehood will be of major long-term significance.


REF XQQMA XQQIE
In knowledge we trust!  
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IL Serge Pod #08.01.2002 07:44
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Serge Pod

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Middle East Tactical Report
7 January 2002
IRAN: Having admitted publicly for the first time that its Air Force is using the Mirage F-1s that Iraq rushed across the border for 'safekeeping' during Operation Desert Storm ten years ago, Tehran is now understood to be seeking technical assistance from the aircraft's French makers. One Mirage F-1 was lost in a crash in November, and the Iranians are reported to have begun putting out feelers to the French with a view to a possible retrofit for the remaining ex-Iraqi aircraft.

KUWAIT: The parliamentary public finance committee is on the warpath over the MoD's $11.5m contract with Sofresa of France for 12 Naja patrol boats, which are reported by concordant sources to have serious and potentially dangerous design faults. According to the committee's chairman, Mubarak Al-Duwayla, members of parliament are currently examining the possibility of submitting the case to the public prosecutor for further investigation and, ultimately, a trial before the Kuwaiti courts.

SAUDI ARABIA: Following on from reports in May that the MoDA and NASA were involved in talks on building a Saudi satellite (see Tactical Report 8/21), Saudi diplomatic sources suggest that NASA has suspended its consultative services in this domain. According to the same sources, Defence Minister Prince Sultan Ben Abdulaziz, who had earlier been quoted as saying that 2002 would be a turning point in the Saudi space industry, was shocked by NASA's change of heart.

SYRIA: Damascus is understood to have begun receiving its first Su-27 SK fighters and launch platforms for S-300 missiles under the terms of a defence package first signed by the late President Hafez Assad in July 1999 and revived when Defence Minister Mustafa Tlass visited Moscow in May (see Tactical Report 8/23). Damascus is also believed to be keen to acquire a significant number of T-90S MBTs within the framework of the same agreement, but given its shortage of hard currency it is rumoured to be is be exploring potentially highly sensitive sources of external funding for such a deal.

Also in TACTICAL REPORT Vol.9, No 01 (Friday, January 4, 2002):

News Briefs

Algeria: Visiting Gulf VIPs in dispute over hunting rights
GCC: Japan promotes water, land reclamation schemes to boost oil companies' chances
Kuwait: Navy team to visit European shipyards
Libya: Partial details only in first ever public defence budget
Turkey: C-in-C 'lifts embargo' on French arms purchases
UAE: Defence Minister plays up national character of federal armed forces

Insight

GCC: world's biggest defence spenders. As a new report details the consequences of defence and security spending by Arab Gulf states, free-marketeers in the region are hoping for a change in policy.

Iraq: Qusay puts out feelers. With the battle still raging in Washington over what to do about Saddam Hussein, his son Qusay has reportedly been putting out feelers in the hope of fending off a US attack.

Focus

GCC: wag the dog. As GCC leaders resolve to move toward monetary union and an integrated defence structure, contacts between Riyadh and Abu Dhabi show that the UAE enjoys surprising leverage over the usually dominant Saudis.


REF XQQMA XQQIE
DSD
In knowledge we trust!  

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