Saudi and Gulf Forces Intervene in Bahrain

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The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have moved in to action today by sending their forces in to Bahrain. The action represents a unified move from the Gulf countries to restore the out of sync balance of power in Middle East.

Bahrain’s largest Shiite opposition group Wefaq came out against the GCC intervention:

“We consider the entry of any soldier or military machinery into the Kingdom of Bahrain’s air, sea or land territories a blatant occupation,” Wefaq said in a statement.

According to media reports, about 1,000 Saudi troops and 150 armored personal carriers are involved, while UAE is planning to send forces in the coming days.

The following precursory developments have taken place in the region, leading to the GCC action today:

  • Over the weekend, Arab League lent its support for establishing a No-Fly zone over Libya.
  • GCC meeting in Saudi Arabia on March 10 led to the announcement of $20 billion aid package for Bahrain and Oman. A GCC statement noted Qaddafi regime in Libya as illegitimate.
  • US Defense Secretary Robert Gates visited Bahrain on March 11 and called for speedy reforms there.
  • Media reports on March 13 indicated Syria has sent arms, ammunition, and equipment to Qaddafi regime to crush the uprising there.

It would be important to see the American and Iranian response to the Saudi maneuvered military intervention in Bahrain. In coming articles, PoliTact will be examining the rapidly changing geopolitical situation of Middle East.