he press is trying to implicate Saudi Arabia as the fourth member of the “Axis of Evil,” but the kingdom is still the most strategically vital ally the U.S. has in the Middle East.
Above from National Review Online
Stepping Into Iraq
Saudi Arabia Will Protect Sunnis if the U.S. Leaves
By Nawaf Obaid
In February 2003, a month before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the Saudi foreign minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, warned President Bush that he would be “solving one problem and creating five more” if he removed Saddam Hussein by force. Had Bush heeded his advice, Iraq would not now be on the brink of full-blown civil war and disintegration.
One hopes he won’t make the same mistake again by ignoring the counsel of Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United States, Prince Turki al-Faisal, who said in a speech last month that “since America came into Iraq uninvited, it should not leave Iraq uninvited.” If it does, one of the first consequences will be massive Saudi intervention to stop Iranian-backed Shiite militias from butchering Iraqi Sunnis.
Arab and Muslim countries, have petitioned the Saudi leadership to provide Iraqi Sunnis with weapons and financial support.
Isn’t this happening already, with the weapons, men and money being used against US troops? This is disinformation to justify the already existing support for the insurgents against US troops? Also this explanation doesn’t work to explain why Saudi Arabia is supporting the Taliban in Afghanistan with money and weapons against our troops?
Moreover, domestic pressure to intervene is intense. Major Saudi tribal confederations, which have extremely close historical and communal ties with their counterparts in Iraq, are demanding action.
This pressure isn’t already arming the insurgents against US troops now? Isn’t this the same pressure that existed before 9-11 to support bin Laden, and after 9-11 to cover up and continue the support of bin Laden, the Taliban, and “radical” Islam?
They are supported by a new generation of Saudi royals in strategic government positions who are eager to see the kingdom play a more muscular role in the region.
That would be to continue the attacks on Americans they have supported since the 1990’s?
(and because it would be impossible to ensure that Saudi-funded militias wouldn’t attack U.S. troops), these requests have all been refused. They will, however, be heeded if American troops begin a phased withdrawal from Iraq. As the economic powerhouse of the Middle East, the birthplace of Islam and the de facto leader of the world’s Sunni community (which comprises 85 percent of all Muslims), Saudi Arabia has both the means and the religious responsibility to intervene.
the Saudi leadership is preparing to substantially revise its Iraq policy. Options now include providing Sunni military leaders (primarily ex-Baathist members of the former Iraqi officer corps, who make up the backbone of the insurgency) with the same types of assistance — funding, arms and logistical support — that Iran has been giving to Shiite armed groups for years.
Either this is true that Iran is supplying the Shiite armed groups, or he is lying. If he is lying, its to justify Saudi support of the insurgents. Either way, it shows Iran or the Saudis or both are supporting the insurgents.
The writer, an adviser to the Saudi government, is managing director of the Saudi National Security Assessment Project in Riyadh and an adjunct fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. The opinions expressed here are his own and do not reflect official Saudi policy.
Nawaf Obaid is an adjunct fellow with the Arleigh A. Burke Chair in Strategy at CSIS, as well as managing director of the Saudi National Security Assessment Project, a consultancy based in Riyadh. He is also the private security and energy adviser to HRH Prince Turki Al Faisal, the Saudi ambassador to the United States. He is the author of The Oil Kingdom at 100: Petroleum Policymaking in Saudi Arabia (Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 2000) and coauthor, with Anthony Cordesman, of National Security in Saudi Arabia: Threats, Responses, and Challenges (Praeger/CSIS, 2005). Mr. Obaid holds a B.S. from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, an M.A. in public policy from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, and has completed doctoral courses at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Security Studies Program.