The weaponized Gulf riyal politik(s) and shifting dynamics of the global arms trade

Emma Soubrier

Abstract


This article considers the politics and economics of arms trade in the Persian Gulf from the perspective of the importers, rather than the usual focus on the exporters. It analyses the purposes that weapons purchases have served over the last three decades for three of the most important Middle Eastern arms importers—the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. This shows an increasingly blurred divide between the political, economic and strategic dimensions of the arms trade. It suggests an important shift in the relations between the arms client/importing states, supplier/exporting states, and defense industrial companies.


Keywords


Middle East; Persian Gulf; Arabian Peninsula; defense; arms; international relations; political economy; power dynamics; foreign policy

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15355/epsj.15.1.49

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