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Viewing cable 10MANAMA57, BAHRAIN'S KING HAMAD APPROVES USG REQUESTS FOR USE

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
10MANAMA57 2010-02-01 13:01 2011-02-18 21:09 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Manama
VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMK #0057 0321358
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 011358Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY MANAMA
TO RHMFISS/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL PRIORITY
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9184
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO PRIORITY 0067
INFO RUEHZM/GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBUL/AMEMBASSY KABUL PRIORITY 0129
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHBVAKS/COMUSNAVCENT  PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L MANAMA 000057 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR NEA/ARP, EUR/RPM 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/01/2020 
TAGS: PREL ENRG MARR NATO BA
SUBJECT: BAHRAIN'S KING HAMAD APPROVES USG REQUESTS FOR USE 
OF ISA AIR BASE 
 
REF: A. MANAMA 025 
    ΒΆB. MANAMA 026 C. 1/27/10 DAALDER-ERELI EMAIL D. 1/31/10 GORTNEY-PETRAEUS EMAIL Classified By: Ambassador Adam Ereli for reasons 1.4(b) and (d).

1.(C) Bahrain's head of state, King Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa, received the Ambassador and NAVCENT/Fifth Fleet Commander Vice Admiral William Gortney on January 31 to review USG requests for the use of Isa Air Base. Based on reftels, Ambassador informed the King that our priorities were trans-shipment of mine-resistant all-terrain vehicles (M-ATV's) and stationing of U.S. Navy P-3 and NATO AWACS aircraft. VADM Gortney outlined a notional timeline that could accommodate these deployments.

2.(C) King Hamad reiterated Bahrain's commitment to its partnership with the United States and to supporting the coalition in Afghanistan. He said that he would speak the same evening with the Commander of the Bahrain Defense Forces, General Khalifa bin Ahmed al Khalifa, and instruct him to work out logistical details with the Embassy and NAVCENT.

3.(C) The King also said that he had instructed Bahrain's Minister of Oil and Gas to study the economic and technical feasibility of offering long-term contracts for fuel at fixed prices to the U.S. Navy. The idea offered strategic and economic advantages, the King said. It would provide a guaranteed and reliable fuel supply to those defending the security of the Gulf, and it would offer a steady revenue stream for the Kingdom. Ambassador replied that he would review the idea with the Minister of Oil and VADM Gortney undertook to bring it to the attention of the Defense Energy Support Center (DESC).

4.(C) Comment: Once again, King Hamad has come through for us with his customary good will and graciousness. This generosity should not be taken for granted, however. While it's hard to imagine Bahrain saying no to a vital request from the U.S., we need to be careful, deliberate and inclusive of them in planning our future deployments. And, as indicated in Ref B, Bahrain needs USG senior-level political engagement to complement the high-level military attention it gets from us. End comment. ERELI