By As’ad AbuKhalil – Wed, 2013-12-18
Never before has the Saudi government felt comfortable flaunting its alliance with Israel. This alliance is not new and has long historical precedences. But the Saudi royal family, in the age of the second generation of princes, has been changing tactics: Historically cautious and duplicitous, the Saudi regime is now open about its alliance with the United States and Israel (closer to Israel than the US as of late).
Before the Iraqi invasion of 1990, the Saudi government and its neighbors wanted a US military presence but always “over the horizon.” They were afraid of local and Arab public opinion had they invited US troops to their land. Those qualms and apprehensions were removed once the Saudi regime invited US forces into the kingdom, and other Gulf regimes followed suit and hosted various US military and intelligence bases (some of the military and CIA bases in the Gulf region are among the biggest in the world).
After September 11, the Saudi government calculated, for reasons related to winning over US Congress and media, that an alliance with Israel would remove all the resentment against Saudi Arabia for the complicity of the royal family (with the full support of successive US administrations) in the establishment of a global jihadi network. The Saudi calculation worked. Suddenly, criticism in the US Congress disappeared, and a legal case against the Saudi minister of defense was dismissed and the media started to, yet again, sing the praises of Saudi moderation and reasonableness. The Saudi government added its “peace plan” to prove its credentials as a state willing to walk in the footsteps of Anwar Sadat, and to make an ostensible break with its past grotesque rhetoric of anti-Semitism (not that this anti-Semitic rhetoric was eliminated or that this anti-Semitic rhetoric ever bothered Zionists, provided that services to Israel are rendered).
Saudi intelligence chief Prince Turki Al Faisal also is outraged the international community has let the war continue in Syria
But the meeting between Saudi Prince Turki and past and current Israeli officials in Monte Carlo may indicate that the Saudi government has gotten quite comfortable in its dealings with Israelis. The Saudi government is now showing its displeasure with the Obama administration by flaunting its agreement with the government that can wield the most influence in US Congress. But this policy carries risks for the royal family:
1) It is not clear what is left in terms of ideology for the royal family. Wahhabiyyah is now aligned with Zionism, and the clerics are made to make changes in interpretations of the religious doctrine in response to demands of US Congress.
2) There will come a contradiction. The Saudi government, while sponsoring jihadi and non-jihadi Salafis all over the region, is aligning itself with a state and an ideology that Salafis (of whatever stripe) have a hard time reconciling themselves to.
3) How far will the Saudi family go before it causes harm to its religious and Arab nationalist image – an image which it can only brandish with payments of large sums of money to Arab media and publishing houses.
4) After a period of time, the Saudi government will be seen as a partner in the Israeli occupation of Arab (and in the minds of many Muslim) lands.
5) The alliance with Israel can be used against certain Saudi princes by other Saudi princes, especially that the struggle for power is now in full swing.
6) The conflict between the various Gulf regimes seems to have increased, and this alliance will be used by the rivals of Saudi Arabia against it.
7) How will the Saudi government seek to gain popularity in the Arab world (always through sums of cash tossed at dictators) while maintaining its alliance with Israel?
8) What can Israel give to Saudi Arabia that it can’t get from the US? And what can Israel get from Saudi Arabia? The benefits from this relationship are at best tactical for both sides.
9) How can the Saudi regime use the argument of jihad in Syria while preserving an alliance with Israel, and refraining from any talk of a military solution to the Palestinian problem?
The Saudi royal family is facing a political crisis that coincides with the crisis of succession in the kingdom. The recent uncharacteristically bold moves by the kingdom in its foreign policy are signs of indecision and conflict at the level of leadership. This could only lead to strategically wrong moves by either the government as a whole or an individual prince who is too impatient to wait for the right time to seize the throne.
Filed under: Al Qaeda, Angry Arab, Arab Zionists, Bandar, GCC, ISIL, MUSLIM ZIONISTS, Saudia, Syria, Takfiris, Wahabism At Work, War on Syria, Wars for Israel, Zionist entity | Tagged: 9/11, Bandar | Comments Off on Complications of the Saudi Alliance With Israel