Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Saudi Arabia: Review the Bidding Now (Atlantic Council)

Link
Reports that the CIA has concluded Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi add weight and urgency to something recommended by this writer weeks ago: The United States should undertake a comprehensive, bottom-up national security review of the bilateral relationship with the Saudi Kingdom and its impact on American interests in the Middle East.  Such a review is long-overdue in any event.  The alleged murder of a resident of the United States by order of the de facto Saudi chief-of-state would seem to make it mandatory.  It should be mandatory.
Recall my stating in this post? : Deposing Saudi Arabia's Prince- More Then One Way to Skin A Cat

"Rest assured if the CIA/Central Intelligence Agency states that MBS is guilty and a tyrant... this is the foundation for which all future plans concerning Saudi Arabia will built upon."

 The building upwards on the CIA foundational assessment has begun...


"Much of the media coverage of the CIA’s reported conclusion focuses on the tricky position in which President Trump now finds himself.  His difficulties seem to boil down to two elements.  First is the contradiction between his commentary to date on the Khashoggi matter and the facts that seem to be emerging.  Second – and much more serious in terms of national security – is the presumed tension between demanding justice and securing American interests.
It is this presumed tension that should be the focus of a no-holds-barred review of the bilateral relationship and the Kingdom’s impact on American interests.  One may, after all, accept the reported CIA conclusion and still believe that Mohammed bin Salman – like it or not - will be ruling Saudi Arabia for the next three or four decades.  Does this uncomfortable pairing dictate that the United States swallow deeply and resign itself to business-as-usual with the Kingdom?  Perhaps it does.  But should this conclusion be based on a hunch or a thorough national security review that challenges deep-seated assumptions and gives the president some practical policy options?"

Presumed: to suppose to be true without proof : imply
"This writer has no preconceived idea on the overall conclusions such a review would produce.  Long and bitter experience with the Syrian crisis has led to the personal view that Saudi support of armed sectarian rebels helped Bashar al-Assad pollute and divide the Syrian opposition (that’s some serious spin)  while encouraging Iran to export – with superior force - its own brand of toxic sectarianism to Syria.  Riyadh was far from alone in inadvertently advancing Assad’s survival strategy by elevating support for sect over Syrian nationalism.  (Riyadh was far from alone and it should be said that they operated in partnership with the US) In competing for influence in Syria it and other anti-Assad parties permitted their opposition to Assad to be neutralized by their addiction to sectarianism, their desire for employees, and their disrespect for Syria and Syrians.  Iran has been the beneficiary.  And now it is Washington left to ponder how best to deal with Iranian-commanded Shi’a militias in Syria whose presence compromises America’s ability to seal an eventual military victory over violent Sunni Islamists."
Is America trying to have a military victory over violent Sunni Islamists? Like their Sunni extremists PKK pals? I don't think so.
"Yemen, like Syria, is a humanitarian abomination and a policy catastrophe.  It appears that the Trump administration is now fully cognizant of the scope of a disaster which its predecessor carelessly failed to preempt.  Set aside the human costs of this malignant operation.  Who benefits from the mindless destruction of an already fragile and disunited state on the Arabian Peninsula?  (Israel and their Kurdish allies- Yinon) Who has gently stirred the pot from afar, enabling and encouraging the Saudi Kingdom to do its absolute worst? (The answer for this author is Iran. As if Iran, alone, somehow responsible for the Syrian situation, what has occurred with Khashoggi etc.,?) Could Iran have done better in Yemen (or in Syria) if it had provided a script for its enemies to follow?  Tehran has been lucky with its enemies.
A comprehensive national security review would, however, go much farther than Syria and Yemen.  Does Saudi petroleum wealth still mandate American protection and Washington equating Saudi stability with the royal family?  Does Saudi opposition to the widely held view of Arab youth that Arab governance should reflect the consent of the governed serve or subvert American national security interests in the Arab world?  ( Some sort of colour revolution being planned?) Can the Kingdom, under current management, contribute positively to Arab-Israeli peace? (Is an Arab-Israeli peace plan really about peace? If so, for who?) Is the Kingdom really – in the words of President Trump – an ally of the United States?
Even if such a review were to reach the most negative conclusions about the state of the relationship and the impact of the Kingdom on the region, it need not (and should not) dictate an absolute break.  The United States maintains diplomatic relations with unattractive regimes all around the world.  And the posting of an ambassador to Riyadh is painfully overdueGetting General John Abizaid to the Kingdom as quickly as possible should be a high priority for the US Senate, even if it proves inappropriate to permit the Kingdom’s Washington ambassador to continue his service here in light of his reported role in the Khashoggi matter.
There is a strong and understandable inclination in the administration not to let this crisis go to waste; to try to exact some behavioral and policy adjustments of the Kingdom.  This is understandable and fully in keeping with longstanding foreign policy practice.  But it will be insufficient unless buttressed by a thorough review of the bidding with respect to Saudi Arabia: The bilateral relationship and the impact of Saudi actions on American interests in the region and beyond.  This writer would not object to a thoughtful, well-documented review concluding, in effect, “swallow deep, push-back on specific objectional behavior, but seek to preserve the essence of a relationship first established in 1945.”  But American taxpayers deserve from their government deep thought and careful deliberation about a relationship that was not working well even before the murder of a United States resident.  The murder was an affront to the United States.  It requires a response that is both thoughtful and carefully measured"
Yes, concern for American taxpayers is what motivates the elite class.......
American taxpayers are first and foremost in the minds of the banker/war maker class all the time.


Related : Foregone Conclusion: CIA says MBS Ordered Khashoggi Assassination & Another Wife Appears.

From earlier

Yesterday:

19 comments:

  1. Pentagon loses track of $500 million in weapons, equipment given to Yemen 2015

    Exclusive: U.S. withdraws staff from Saudi Arabia dedicated to Yemen 2016

    Saudi Threat to Sell U.S. Assets Could Hurt, but Mostly the Saudis 2016

    US and UK could face Afghanistan war crimes investigation 2017

    John Bolton threatens war crimes court with sanctions in virulent attack 2018

    Viral video
    9Sep18: Saudi king's brother 'considers exile' after Yemen war criticism
    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/09/saudi-king-brother-considers-exile-yemen-war-criticism-180909062258728.html

    Saudi oil vs. shale
    https://finviz.com/futures_charts.ashx?t=CL&p=m1


    Russia dumped 84% of its American debt. What that means
    https://money.cnn.com/2018/07/30/investing/russia-us-debt-treasury/index.html

    10,000,000 BPD lot of petrodollars
    Saudi Arabia wants to kill the petrodollar - economist
    https://www.rt.com/business/410056-saudi-arabia-petrodollar-economist/



    Larry Fink (https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-11-07/blackrocks-larry-fink-dollars-days-global-reserve-currency-are-numbered)

    The problem is we are living with a deficit that is very large. We are fighting with our creditors right now worldwide," Fink said.

    "Generally, when you fight with your banker, it’s not a good outcome," he said.

    "I wouldn’t recommend you fight with your lenders, and we’re fighting with our lenders. Forty percent of the U.S. deficit is funded by external factors. No other country has that."



    ReplyDelete
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    1. I'll check the links, thanks
      and is anyone else having difficulty with the comment section?
      It's like google is making it super difficult to leave comments- been like that the past few days here
      out of my control, sorry :(

      Delete
  2. MEE
    https://twitter.com/MiddleEastEye/status/1037043869295300609?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1037043869295300609&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.middleeasteye.net%2Fnews%2Fexclusive-saudi-kings-brother-considering-self-exile-841116473

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    1. I covered the return of this fellow to Saudi Arabia- apparently he came back with some guarantees from Britain- whatever that may mean?

      http://pennyforyourthoughts2.blogspot.com/2018/11/wheels-in-motion-for-western-friendly.html

      Delete
  3. By default, I do not accept at face value what any bunch of spooks says about anything. If Western, Turkish and Saudi spooks are arguing over the sequence of events in a mainstream-broadcast event, then what is there to believe? The spooks? The mainstream media? Yet I see altmedia sites that I trust pushing the Khashoggi assassination story.

    I assume the answer behind the third door is that neither royalist-spooks nor dissident-spooks killed Khashoggi. He was a spy himself and he is involved in another spooky setup fake. Perhaps the end goal is to discredit Trump but no doubt the purpose is to manipulate public opinion and discredit some opponent, as usual

    I think I'm resigned to the fact that most people will never countenance that many mainstream events and talking heads are fake. I am disappointed that SyrianPerspective is heavily pushing the mainstream narrative, i.e. the CIA said Khashoggi was murdered by Saudi Arabia.

    Ludicrous doesn't begin to describe such a stance.

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    1. Hello Anonymous:

      " Yet I see altmedia sites that I trust pushing the Khashoggi assassination story."

      Which should inform us all about the reality of the so called alt media. For a long time now I've noticed they are not so alternative at all.

      "Khashoggi. He was a spy himself and he is involved in another spooky setup fake. Perhaps the end goal is to discredit Trump but no doubt the purpose is to manipulate public opinion and discredit some opponent, as usual"

      He was definitely an operative. I've postulated it's possible his time was up and a spook organization killed two birds with one stone. Ridding themselves of Khashoggi and framing MBS- Or perhaps, Khashoggi is still alive- who knows?

      "I think I'm resigned to the fact that most people will never countenance that many mainstream events and talking heads are fake."

      As fake as could be- I agree

      Too bad about SyrianPerspective :(
      I always liked Ziad, but, most of the commenters are trolls/the rest repeaters and only a few are willing to really think about anything from a realistic, logical sort of stance. Those few are the only reason I ever stop by there- however rare that is.

      "Ludicrous doesn't begin to describe such a stance"

      agreed

      Delete
    2. You're right. Logic flies out the window when you hit cognitive dissonance or wishful thinking. For example, logic stares me directly in the face when I see a map of Syria -- it looks partitioned to me. Perhaps not permanently and, yes, maybe a diplomatic and proxy fight will restore all of Syria back to the Syrians. But it still looks awfully like the Syria I see in the New Middle East maps.

      If the country stays like this, split right down the middle, then logic dictates that this was always the goal and Russia helped manage the conflict. I hate contemplating this (I think I snapped at you once or twice for countenancing it) but I have to follow the logical possibilities.

      You dare not think out loud like this at SyrianPerspective; I found myself engaging in self-censorship for goodness sake. Anyway, thanks for letting me air my logical sins! I'll not moan about SyrPer again -- I've got over the disappointment.

      Delete
    3. Yes, at the moment Syria does look partitioned.
      Will it always be this way?
      Right now, I would say yes.
      But that could change.

      Is it the Usrael desired change/outcome?- No
      The Kurds need their Mediterranean connection
      As of now they don't have it
      This was blocked by Russia and Turkey.
      That doesn't mean either state Russia or Turkey is going to help Syria reclaim all her territory-

      One thing I'm sure of the Syrian situation/machnation is not over.


      Delete
  4. Yes, this Atlantic Council article is BS.
    Only after reading Pepe Escobar's article "ERDOGAN, MBS, ISLAMIC LEADERSHIP AND THE PRICE OF SILENCE" ( http://thesaker.is/erdogan-mbs-islamic-leadership-and-the-price-of-silence/ ) do I understand that it is Turkey (Erdogan) who will "skin the cat" MBS.

    Only now do I understand that there is a mighty fight going on before our eyes, about what nation is the 'leading Islam nation'.
    It is a fight between Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
    And only now I understand that very aggressive measures that Saudi policy took against Qatar (on the side of Turkey) some months ago.

    Neither this Atlantic Council article nor Washington's foreign policy understands that the Middle East is much more dominated by the Turkey-Saudi Arabia rivalry then by the Saudi Arabia - Iran rivalry.
    So it's not MbS and the murder of Khashoggi that matters (it's only a vehicle being used by Turkey). What matters is that the whole state of Saudi Arabia is going to be kicked out of the power game in Middle East.

    So never mind if MbS stays or has to go - with Saudi Arabia Washington and Tel Aviv have bet on a wrong or dead horse.

    So the Turkish-Iranian, not 'alliance', but 'cohabitation' will dominate the Middle East (with Qatar, Kuwait). And Saudi-Arabia (with Abu Dhabi and other Emirates) will be on the loosing streak. Soon the US and Israeli Middle East policy will have no footing any more.
    This means that Trump's war (together with Saudi Arabia and their allies) against Iran is highly improbable.
    This means that Turkey, Russia, Iran, and - may be soon - Syria again will dominate the Middle East and that with Saudi Arabia also the US & Israel are more or less kicked out of the game there. With this also the US occupation (this is it more or less) of Iraq will be massively destabilised. This is also very bad news for Kurdish rebels in Syria and Iraq,

    Worth being read is also this article, mentioned by Pepe Escobar: "THE IRANIAN ALBATROSS THE US HAS HUNG AROUND ITS OWN NECK" - http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/50630.htm .

    J

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  5. J :"I understand that very aggressive measures that Saudi policy took against Qatar (on the side of Turkey) some months ago."

    Did you get this idea from Pepe's article?
    I haven't read it as of yet, but, can tell you that is incorrect.

    Turkey stood by Qatar. As did Iran.
    In fact I would state that Saudi Arabia targeted Qatar because of it's alliance with Turkey and Iran, both.

    I have posts on this subject here at the blog. I'll find them and relink them here later.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. "In fact I would state that Saudi Arabia targeted Qatar because of it's alliance with Turkey and Iran, both."

      I thought and still think so, too. But until yesterday I had another perspective: Then I thought the Saudis attacked Qatar because of Iran. That is: If Turkey hadn't existed the Saudis would have attacked Qatar nonetheless because of Qatar having good relation to Iran.

      Now I think the Saudis attacked Qatar because of Turkey. That is: If Iran hadn't existed the Saudis would have attacked Qatar nonetheless because of Qatar having good relation to Turkey.

      Then I always wondered why Riyadh had such a hate against Tehran. I mean: The Sunni-Shia split is about 1300 years ago.
      But now I even think that the hate against Iran has it's roots in the Saudi's rivalry to Turkey. That is: The Saudi's hate Iran because of their good relation to Turkey. Yes, the Iranians are Shia people. But in a fight between Sunni-Turks and Sunni-Saudis they would side with the Turks.

      The Saudis are afraid to loose the privilege of being 'protector' of the holy towns of Mecca and Medina. And the Saudis have any reason to fear this. Because Neo-Ottoman-Muslim-Brother Erdogan would love nothing more than to put Mecca and Medina under Turkish-Muslim-Brother 'protection' to make Turkey the motherly protector of all Sunnis on the planet.

      J

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  6. A Pepe. I used to like him. He was always on Cross Talk...ah Peter, I used to like him as-well. Ah Sleboda...nah I never fully trusted him. Sigh. Is everyone a gatekeeper ;)

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    1. Sleboda... not trustworthy
      Cross talk- not a fan

      Pepe: I'm still ok with (cautiously) - I read the link-
      I do notice he's pushing this competition between two aspects of Islam- which is of course the same meme pushed by the anglo zionist crowd
      though they could be coming at it from different angles entirely- but what ever?


      Delete
  7. Hi J; I see Pepe didn't write anything along those lines, perhaps you read that concept elsewhere?
    Not here though.

    direct quote below

    "No one can possibly advance the endgame. But that carries the strong possibility of a dominant, Erdogan-led Turkey all across the lands of Islam, allied with Qatar and also with Iran.

    Plus all of the above enjoying very close geopolitical and economic relations with Russia. Expect major fireworks ahead.

    I would agree with that. That is what Saudi Arabia doesn't want to see- Iran, Qatar and Turkey- allied. As they already have been- this is what people miss- These three have been cooperating for years now.


    That concept also jibes with why Saudi Arabia targeted Qatar in the manner they did- allied with Iran and Turkey.

    That would be a remarkable allegiance if it held true.

    Then throw it into the alliance with Russia... and OMG were talking geo political shift that the US does not want to occur.

    This may explain why the GCC nations sans Qatar are trying to make nice with Syria at the moment...

    I'm hoping Syria doesn't get sucked into this game

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  8. Hi, Penny!
    "Hi J; I see Pepe didn't write anything along those lines, perhaps you read that concept elsewhere?"
    I am not sure I understand which "concept" You mean, Penny. I believe I only put forward Escobar's cognition that Turkey (ambitious MB Erdogan) and Saudi Arabia have fierce fight about who is the leading Sunni nation and the 'protector' and 'motherland' of all Sunnis.

    "Then throw it into the alliance with Russia... and OMG were talking geo political shift that the US does not want to occur."
    Yes, Washington (and Israel) has a huge problem. And I believe Trump, Bolton, Pence and so on don't even see that.
    Add to this the possibility that the EU countries might want to be no more the vassals of the US. Also Japan is suddenly turning friendly towards Russia. Also Pakistan moves away from the US. Also the US puppets in Kabul are loosing the country to the Taliban.

    Washington's policy of threatening, blackmailing, bombing doesn't work no more. Only in Latin America the US policy of liquidating unwanted governments still works.

    J

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi J
    this concept/idea

    J :"I understand that very aggressive measures that Saudi policy took against Qatar (on the side of Turkey) some months ago."

    which was why I replied

    "Turkey stood by Qatar. As did Iran.
    In fact I would state that Saudi Arabia targeted Qatar because of it's alliance with Turkey and Iran, both"



    I'm having difficulties with the comments. They aren't showing up as they should-
    It reads as if you were suggesting SA took actions against qatar, on the same side as Turkey.
    Looks as if you've clarified you do see them as competitors- which they are on some levels..

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Hi. Penny!
      You misunderstood my sentence:
      "I understand that very aggressive measures that Saudi policy took against Qatar (on the side of Turkey) some months ago."
      I'm a bit confused now, because it was directly behind the word "Qatar" that I put this bracket-expression "(on the side of Turkey)". So to me it expresses that Qatar(!) was/is on the side of Turkey. I didn't put this "(on the side of Turkey)" behind the word "Saudi" or the words "Saudi policy". If I had, then I would understand You interpretation of my sentence.
      Also only one sentence before I wrote "It is a fight between Turkey and Saudi Arabia". So I would have bet it was clear what I wanted to express.

      But then again until this day sadly my English is really poor - as You, Penny, probably notice with every of my comments.
      I feel a bit like this guy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Va2FR_gMUhA

      J

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    2. Hi J
      Yes, I did mis understand your sentence- you cleared up the confusion- but don't apologize for your english, please.


      As me how good any of my other 'languages' are?
      Terrible, will be my response.
      You have the ability to speak well in more then one language? I don't.

      IMO you're doing ok.






      Delete
    3. Penny, You are a very dangeous charmer!
      Isn't there this English saying, something like "to put lipstick on a pig" (and yes. the "pig" would be me)?
      J

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