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Saudi Arabia on Offensive With Attack-Minded Military Splurge

  • Mideast states favor precision weapons, fighter-refueling gear
  • Defense budgets rebound as perceived Iranian threat increases

Saudi Arabia and other Western-backed Mideast states have switched the focus of their military spending to more-offensive programs as tensions with Iran ratchet up, according to a study by IHS Jane’s.

Purchases of items intended to boost the attacking capabilities of warplanes, such as precision air-to-ground missiles, advanced guidance systems and air-to-air refueling gear that extends the duration of flights, are leading an increase in defense outlay, with budgets set to swell by up to 3 percent annually from 2018, the defense and security specialist said.