The USA and Saudi Arabia: a monstrous relationship

Published on Intrepid Report, by John Stanton, Sept 27, 2013.

According to Dave Ottoway, writing for the Foreign Policy Research Institute, “There is practically no civil society in Saudi Arabia. The country is run by the al-Saud royal family in partnership with a highly conservative religious establishment espousing a fundamentalist theology known as Wahhabism.  

“The alliance goes back to the mid-eighteenth century. Both the House of al-Saud and the Wahhabi religious leadership are against freedom of religion, democracy, a free press, and the public mixing of unmarried men and women. Wahhabi clerics are also against movie houses, public dancing, drinking, women’s sports centers, girls exercising in schools, and women driving. We could not have a conference like this in Saudi Arabia. The women would be in another room listening on a TV monitor or, if it was an international meeting, there might be a barrier down the center.

“Neither the royal family nor the Wahhabi religious establishment is interested in elections. Only the chambers of commerce are allowed to have elections—businessmen who are absolutely no threat to the establishment.”

“In short, Saudi Arabia’s rulers are more ruthless than those in North Korea or anywhere else on the planet. Why aren’t members of the US Congress championing sanctions against Saudi Arabia instead of Russia, Cuba and Iran? Why does the world’s most powerful nation bow down before the House of Saud even as it becomes less dependent on Persian Gulf and Saudi oil? Where and when did the special relationship with Saudi Arabia begin?”

The Saudi Kingdom’s leaders were not concerned with communism but reprisals by other tribes in the region. According to Ottoway “the primary concern . . . was an imminent attack by the forces of the Hashemite royal families ruling in Jordan and, at the time, also in Iraq. They had a grudge to settle after being driven out of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina by the al-Sauds in the 1920s. To deal with the Hashemite threat, the king wanted to enter a formal military alliance with the U.S. and obtain arms urgently on a grant basis” … //

… Saudis fund Hannibal Lector insurgent group: USA thrilled: … //

… Saudi and US intelligence: Making the world safe for dictatorships

The pattern is mercenary and capitalist. Those base values allow the two countries to find common ground. Since 1945 US and the Saudi Arabian government/intelligence organizations have worked together to skirt oversight in the USA and subsequently engage in bloodthirsty operations to maintain the status quo.

The status quo, in this instance, means the purchase of enormous amount of armaments from US defense contractors that are not needed for the internal defense of the Kingdom. At one point in the late 1990s the Saudi’s did not have enough qualified pilots to operate all the aircraft they were sold. It is a jobs agreement between the US and Saudis to keep US weapons manufacturing lines open. Such an arrangement was likely reached long ago. With the US providing a security umbrella for Saudi Arabia since 1945, such large weapons purchases are hardly necessary.

It means the USA keeping its mouth shut and not commenting too loudly on the wicked internal matters of Saudi Arabian life and the lives of foreign laborers there. It is turning a blind eye to suppression in Bahrain, the millions displaced in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria (thanks to US policies/interventions), and the destruction of Christian communities. This makes a mockery of the USA as a beacon of human rights.

It means the Cold War has not ended and the long term goal remains: weaken and destabilize Russia, Iran and China.

The status quo also means that democracy/socialist movements of today are viewed as the communism of yesteryear.

Iran is looking pretty good these days.
(full text).

(John Stanton is a Virginia based writer. Reach him here).

more links:

EU transfers to the Baltic countries (++) and Greece (–), on RWER Blog, by merijnknibbe, Sept 27, 2013;

The regressive politics of quantitative easing, on The Conversation, by Jeremy Green, Sept 25, 2013;

Quantitative easing QE: on en.wikipedia; on Bank of England; (Research Papers in Economics) is a collaborative effort of hundreds of volunteers in 78 countries to enhance the dissemination of research in Economics and related sciences. The heart of the project is a decentralized bibliographic database of working papers, journal articles, books, books chapters and software components, all maintained by volunteers. The collected data is then used in various services as described below.
So far, over 1500 archives from 77 countries have contributed about 1.4 million research pieces from 1,700 journals and 3,700 working paper series. Over 35,000 authors have registered and 70,000 email subscriptions are served every week. See below on how you can be part of this initiative …;

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