A powerful weapons manufacturer, a Washington newspaper and a repressive Gulf regime.
They all come together in today's important piece from Salon, which uncovers the story behind a fawning Op-Ed on Bahrain’s ruling sheikh in the right-leaning Washington Times on Nov. 30, 2011:
A top executive at Lockheed Martin recently worked with lobbyists for Bahrain to place an Op-Ed defending the nation’s embattled regime in the Washington Times — but the newspaper did not reveal the role of the regime’s lobbyists to its readers.
The episode shows, the piece continues:
… how Lockheed gave an assist to a major client — Bahrain has bought hundreds of millions of dollars of weapons from the company over the years – as it faces widespread criticism for human rights abuses against pro-democracy protesters.
Late last year, the US put the brakes on a $53 million arms deal with the Bahrain government following international pressure to halt the deal until Bahrain showed concrete steps toward reform.
At least 30 people were killed in a violent crackdown on popular protests that began last February.