In these turbulent times, Democrats in the United States have made it clear that they intend to tighten the rules for the weapons that the US supplies to foreign countries. This comes in what appears to be an effort to counter the effects of the Trump administration’s controversial arms sales to Gulf countries, and as a means of supporting Israel in their disputes with regional rivals.
According to a recent bill proposed by the Democrats, the US State Department should have to provide a thorough fact-finding review process for any proposed weapons sale before the transfer is approved. This would include an examination of the proposed recipient’s record on human rights, their government’s stance on international arms control regimes, and a detailed assessment of the deal’s possible implications on regional security. The SecState would then have to make their findings available to the public, and to Congress which would provide a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ vote on the proposed sale.
Furthermore, the proposed bill would ensure that the weapons delivered to foreign countries are not in contradiction with US law or policy. It would also prevent the provisioning of weapons to governments regarded as “severe human rights violators” as well as nations deemed to be destabilizing the region.
The proposed bill also sets out a list of exceptions in which the requirements of the bill can be bypass. These exceptions include US military aid to Israel, and to other countries that have recently been identified as key partners in the global fight against terrorism.
Although the proposed bill is still in its early stages, the big statement it makes is clear – The US is willing to stand up and be counted when it comes to ensuring stability and peace in the region. It is about time that we step up and become accountable for the weapons we are supplying to foreign countries, particularly in light of the fact that these same weapons can be used for harm.
Regardless of the outcome of the proposed Bill, it’s a positive step forward to ensure that the weapons the US supplies to foreign countries are being used as intended by the governments in question, and for the good of our global security.