Saudi Arabia


A regional power, Saudi Arabia, led by the al Saud dynasty, was founded in 1932. Sitting atop the world’s largest proven oil reserves, the Kingdom is often described as a crucial ally for the United States. However, the Saudis have long exported their radical Wahhabi ideology abroad, fomenting extremism among Muslim communities across the globe. In 1990, after Iraq invaded Kuwait, Saudi Arabia allowed foreign troops to deploy to its territory, prompting an outcry from Saudi radicals, including the late al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Saudi Arabia continues to struggle with its extremist threat, with failed attempts to re-educate terrorists who very often return to the battlefield.  Internally, the country also has unresolved problems with its repressed Shia minority in the Eastern Province, who have erupted in protest sporadically during the Arab Spring. Some are believed to be inspired by Iran, which harbors a longstanding animosity for their Sunni regional rivals.  Saudi Arabia has the largest defense budget in the Middle East and became the world’s largest arms importer in 2014.

  • GDP
    $727.3 Billion
  • Military EXHD
    9.1% of GDP
  • Fit for Service
  • Population

Raytheon Awarded $79 Million to Provide AIM-9X Missile Sustainment to Israel, Kuwait, Others

Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, Arizona, is being awarded $78,723,292 for modification P00022 to a previously awarded indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract (N00019-15-D-0028).  This modification provides for support and sustainment of the AIM-9X Sidewinder Block II tactical missiles in support of the Navy,  Air Force and the governments of Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Israel, Japan, Korea, Kuwait, Oman, Malaysia, […]


US to Increase Support for Saudi-led Coalition in Yemen to Resist ‘Iran’s Mischief’

The United States is looking to increase support for the Saudi-led coalition battling Houthi rebels in Yemen with intelligence-sharing and logistical support but it will not send American troops to combat the Iranian-backed fighters, U.S. officials said Wednesday. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis during a visit to Saudi Arabia accused Iran of playing a destabilizing role […]


Raytheon Awarded $17 Million to Provide JSOW Logistics and Training to Saudi Arabia

Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, Arizona, is being awarded a $16,871,813 cost-plus-fixed-fee task order (4769) against a previously issued basic ordering agreement (N00019-15-G-0003) for initial integrated logistics support and training for the Joint Standoff Weapon for the government of Saudi Arabia under the Foreign Military Sales program.  Work will be performed in Tuscon, Arizona (50 percent); […]


U.S. Lawmakers Raise Doubts on Sale of Smart Bombs to Saudi Arabia

A group of U.S. lawmakers said on Monday they had requested more information from President Donald Trump’s administration about the potential sale of precision-guided munitions to Saudi Arabia, expressing concern about civilian casualties in Riyadh’s campaign in Yemen that delayed the deal last year. Thirty mostly Democratic lawmakers signed the letter to U.S. Secretary of […]


Critical Solutions International Wins $132 Million to Produce Husky Mine Detectors for Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia

Critical Solutions International Inc.,* Charleston, South Carolina, was awarded a $131,946,942 firm-fixed-price, foreign military sales (Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia) contract for the production of commercial Husky second generation system, new production sub-systems, spare parts, storage, tools and diagnostic equipment, field service representatives, and training for current special defense acquisition funds requirements and projected country […]


Raytheon Awarded $23 Million to Provide Patriot Missile Support to Israel, Qatar, Kuwait, Others

Raytheon Co., Andover, Massachusetts, was awarded a $23,044,183 cost-plus-fixed-fee, foreign military sales (Israel, Qatar, Kuwait, Japan, Korea, Republic of Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, Luxembourg and Saudi Arabia) contract for support necessary to execute PATRIOT Field Surveillance program to include missile assessments, testing, recertification, and repair activities. Bids were solicited via the Internet with one received. […]


Woodward FST Awarded $7 Million to Overhaul Engine Manifolds for Saudi F-15s

Woodward FST Inc., Zeeland, Michigan, has been awarded a $7,313,497 firm-fixed-price requirements contract for overhaul of F100-PW-220/220E Augmenter Spraying Manifold. Work will be performed at Zeeland, Michigan, and is expected to be complete by March 28, 2020. This contract is 100 percent foreign military sales to Saudi Arabia. This award is the result of a […]


The Saudi-led Coalition Is Not Ready to Fight the Islamic State

President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter visited Saudi Arabia last week hoping to reassure nervous Gulf allies that American security commitments remain in force in the wake of last year’s Iran nuclear deal. In exchange, the White House was hoping to encourage the Gulf states to play a more active role in the […]


The Mideast’s Precision Guided Arms Race

Precision guided munitions (PGMs) encompass a growing range of bombs and missiles designed to destroy targets on land, at sea, or in the air. While platforms like fighters, armored vehicles, and warships often receive more attention, their lethality is almost negligible if not bolstered by advanced munitions. With minor updates, today’s PGMs allow even older […]


The Saudis’ New Warships Are Missing Something

The U.S. State Department approved an $11.25-billion sale last month of four Lockheed Martin “Multi-Mission Surface Combatants,” or MMSCs, for the Royal Saudi Navy. While the announcement is only for a “possible” purchase, the deal is likely to move forward given Saudi Arabia’s need to update its aging Persian Gulf fleet. The sale comes as […]


Containment: The Gulf States’ Game Plan for Yemen

The Saudi-led international coalition operating in Yemen announced late last month it had ended the first phase of its nearly month-long campaign in the country. Though the coalition fell short of its stated goal of returning Yemen’s internationally recognized government to power, it insists that in removing the threat of spillover to Yemen’s neighbors, it […]


IDEX 2015: Middle East Arms Market Remains Strong

With the rise of the Islamic State (ISIS) and an increasingly aggressive Iran, Gulf Arab states are spending billions to improve their defenses and better protect their energy infrastructure. Nowhere has this been more evident than last month’s International Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) in Abu Dhabi. The region’s largest defense exhibition attracted officials from […]


An Edge in the Desert

Weapons are pouring into the Middle East at an unprecedented rate. The Pentagon recently announced that it would sell six tilt-rotor Osprey aircraft to Israel for $1.3 billion, American hardware (including Apache helicopters) is being rushed to the Iraqi government to help in its battle against al Qaeda, and Washington has also restored military aid to Egypt after a brief hiatus. But Uncle […]

Category Name

Active Armaments
On Order
Air Defense Systems 1,696* (0)

Aircraft 737* (427)

Artillery 750 (136)

Ground Vehicles 7,122* (1,516*)

Guided Munitions 25,533* (24,959*)

Personnel 233,500 (0)

Ships 34* (103*)