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Posted: 2/7/2002 12:46:26 PM EDT
[size=4]Dump the Saudis[/size=4] [b]A peculiar, intolerant, and anti-Western monarchy.[/b] February 7, 2002 11:15 a.m. Is it just me, or are the Saudis not particularly charming even when they are on a charm offensive? Here was Crown Prince Abdullah in a New York Times interview the other day, trying — but apparently not that hard — to make nice: [b]"In the current environment, we find it very difficult to defend America, and so we keep our silence. Because, to be very frank with you, how can we defend America?"[/b] A day earlier, the head of Saudi intelligence unloosed this charming thought: "Some days you say you want to attack Iraq, some days Somalia, some days Lebanon, some days Syria. Who do you want to attack? All the Arab world? And you want us to support that? It's impossible. It's impossible." When the Saudis tell us that everything is alright with their relationship with the United States, what they really mean is that they want the status quo to go on forever, i.e. they want the U.S. to continue to ignore the Saudis' dangerous work creating a radical Islamic network around the world, while we provide security for the royal family. As I argue in the cover story in the new National Review, mutual strategic and mercenary interests between the U.S. and the Saudis have long submerged the significance of the peculiar, intolerant, and anti-Western beliefs at the core of the Saudi monarchy. After September 11, such considerations now pale against the cultural contradiction between the two countries. The U.S.-Saudi relationship should change fundamentally. And the key, as with so much in the Middle East at the moment, is Iraq. The brewing controversy over the U.S. presence in Saudi Arabia is part of a strategic shift in the region that is making old assumptions obsolete, and so making current U.S. policy a basket of contradictions. Foremost among them is the fact that U.S. troops are in Saudi Arabia to protect the House of Saud from an Iraqi threat the princes no longer really fear. With the Iraqi threat no longer so frightening, the Saudis probably won't let us use Saudi bases for the only task we need them for — toppling Saddam Hussein. This might be because the Saudis worry that the U.S. is not really serious about confronting Saddam. But things, in the long run, might actually be worse for the Saudis if we do finish the job in Iraq. Installing a functional, Western-oriented government in Baghdad would dramatically increase U.S. leverage in the region. A decent government in Iraq could become a model for the Arab world. It would provide a boost to reformers in Iran. And it might chasten Yasser Arafat, who typically moderates his behavior at times of Western assertion. It thus would serve to embarrass the Saudis — who, in comparison with a reformist government in Iraq, would look more backwards than ever — and possibly disrupt the Iranian-Palestinian radical axis on which the Saudis have increasingly looked favorably. Most importantly, a successful U.S. effort to topple Saddam and install a friendly regime in Baghdad would make the U.S.-Saudi alliance far less important. In many ways, Iraq seems a more natural candidate for friendship with the U.S. than does Saudi Arabia, despite the Saddam interlude. - continued -
Link Posted: 2/7/2002 12:47:27 PM EDT
Iraqis have traditionally been a sophisticated and commercial-oriented people, with few of the traditions of Islamic radicalism of the Saudis. Also, the Iraqis could withdraw from OPEC and begin fully pumping oil into the world market, thus reducing Saudi market power and one of the incentives for the U.S. to appease the regime. As for U.S. troops, it is yet another contradiction of the current situation that Osama bin Laden's prescription makes the most strategic sense in the long run: pulling out of Saudi Arabia. The Saudis wouldn't let us fly missions against the Taliban from Saudi territory, and are resistant to letting us fly bombing missions to enforce the no-fly zones in Iraq. What use are our bases? In a post-Saddam world, the U.S. could withdraw its security guarantee from the Saudis, fulfill its basing requirements elsewhere — Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, possibly even Iraq — and give the Saudis some time to think about the Bush doctrine: Supporting and tolerating terrorists makes you a terrorist. Maybe then, the next Saudi charm offensive might actually be a little charming. See article at:[url]http://www.nationalreview.com/lowry/lowry020702.shtml[/url] Eric The(Bases?WeDon'tNeedNoStinkingBases!)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 2/7/2002 1:44:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/7/2002 1:53:36 PM EDT by deadeye47]
Tell the U.N. to stick it up the arses.Cut off all humanitarian aid and money to all the members of the U.N.(thinning of the herds is a natural thing and we shouldn't mess with it!) use the money to take care of and to educate our own for a change and then nuke that whole country over there..like we should have done the last time we were over there! Take control of the oil as thats what all this crap is about anyway and make the country a new Disney attraction. ...Sorry Hun I'm off today and have been enjoying a few adult beverages. I do like your posts though.Keep up the good thought provoking work!
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