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US Saudi relations according to russian newspaper Kommersant

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Let me suggest you reading a long interesting article from biggest russian bussiness newspapaper Kommersant about US Saudi relations

The article below discusses the current US-Saudi relationship over the years, the current crisis and its causes, which have been lying mainly for many years in Saudi Arabia's internal situation and future prospects. The author argues that despite a clear anti-American trend in some of the population and officials and aristocracy of Saudi Arabia, it is in Arabia's interest to continue this alliance and, in particular, to elect Donald Trump for the next term as a radical anti-Iranian candidate who is biggest opponent of Saudi Arabia. In this regard, Saudi Arabia will agree to a radical cut in oil production.
I will add from myself that Donald Trump, like most Republican candidates is strongly supported by  the oil lobby, especially in the situation of radical plans regarding the energy extraction sector on the part of the Democrats.
In this situation, probably Saudi Arabia but also Russia wants Donald Trump to win second term.

Its written in russian language so I translate it by Google Translator


Friendship is friendship, and petrodollars apart

How the American President and the Saudi King Disagreed

"Kommersant" from 04.04.2020, 17:02

The fall in world oil prices together with the coronavirus pandemic, which caused the situation of an ideal storm in the world economy, became the moment of truth in the relationship between the main world oil superpower Saudi Arabia and the leading world superpower of the USA. Saudi Arabia's demonstrative withdrawal from the OPEC + oil deal, which caused turmoil in world markets, was a real shock to U.S. President Donald Trump, who considered close relations with Riyadh to be one of his main foreign policy assets. However, the conflict of interest is programmed not only for today, but also for the complicated history of their relationship.

The OPEC + oil deal, which expired on March 31, and the collapse of the oil market, were seen by many as an all-in game started by the ambitious Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman. This week, Urals Russian oil dropped to $ 13 a barrel, reaching its lowest level in two decades, another piece of bad news amid a pandemic and the introduction of a self-isolation regime in Moscow.

However, among external players, not only Russia was among the main victims of the collapse in the oil market.

According to one version, the goal of the game of the actual Saudi ruler is to squeeze out ineffective players from the oil market, primarily American shale companies.

Recall that every day, all new US companies that produce and process shale oil declare bankruptcy: at a price of less than $ 30 per barrel of Brent crude oil, “shale” business becomes unprofitable.

When there is no agreement in the allies

Confirmation that the American economy actually received a blow under the breath, and at the most inopportune moment of the pandemic, was the alarmist statements made in Washington. In the U.S., they are increasingly saying that America has become a victim of the Russian-Saudi oil war, while opponents of U.S. President Donald Trump accuse him of unjustified support for the Saudi Crown Prince, whose actions largely caused the collapse of the oil market.

Against the backdrop of the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the second destabilizing factor in the world remains the oil market situation, caused by the failure of negotiations with Russia to extend the OPEC + agreement and the sharp increase in oil production by Saudi Arabia.

Thus, producing less than 10 million barrels per day, the kingdom is going to increase production to 12.3 million barrels per day, starting from April 1, after the OPEC + deal is officially closed and the production restrictions connected with it, including 300 thousand barrels, as expected will be put to market from storage.

In a situation of a double blow to the global economy by the coronavirus epidemic and the cheap Saudi oil that flooded the world market, a group of influential American senators called on the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia to take urgent measures to reverse the negative trend threatening U.S. national interests. The appeal of 13 Republican senators was part of Washington’s diplomatic efforts, convincing a key ally in the Persian Gulf to abandon oil production growth and urging Riyadh to become a guarantor of hydrocarbon market stability, as it was before.

x-Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Saudi Arabia Andrei Baklanov - on ways to stabilize the global oil market

“While the United States and the rest of the world, including Saudi Arabia, are struggling with a pandemic, the situation in global energy markets is becoming an additional undesirable factor. The United States has always been a strong and reliable partner of the Saudi kingdom for decades. Given this, our deep concern is the decision of the Ministry of Energy of Saudi Arabia to lower crude oil prices and increase production. In a situation where financial markets were already hit hard, the fall in oil prices caused the maximum destabilization of the global economy, ”the statement says.

“Senior Saudi politicians have repeatedly told US officials, including us, that Saudi Arabia is a stabilizing force in global markets. However, the recent actions of Saudi Arabia make one doubt this. In this regard, we urge the kingdom to show its constructive leadership to stabilize the global economy and calm the situation in the oil and gas industry, when countries around the world are struggling with a pandemic, ”the US senators summarize.

Earlier, Republican Senator Kevin Kramer wrote a letter to U.S. President Donald Trump, expressing bewilderment at his too mild approach to the Saudi prince and calling for pressure on Riyadh. The actions of “our close strategic partner” of Saudi Arabia are of particular concern, said Mr. Kramer.

“The letter from US senators needs to be seen in the context of the general economic recession in the US, which is undergoing a recession.

The predictions are disappointing: to date, American exchanges have lost all the growth that they have done during the presidency of Trump, which he was very proud of. Already by May, unemployment growth could reach 7–8%, ”Anton Fedyashin, professor at the American University in Washington, explained to Kommersant. “During the Great Recession of 2008-2009, US unemployment reached 10%.

Today, tourism, the automotive industry, and the aviation and hotel business claim that they will require financial support from the state. However, collapsed oil prices threaten to finish off the US energy market. It is very symbolic that the senators who signed the appeal represent the states where the energy resources are extracted: Oklahoma, Alaska, Texas, Louisiana. Consequently, American politicians are doing everything possible to absorb the financial and economic upheavals caused by the actions of Riyadh, ”the expert continues, noting that in seven months the country will have presidential and congressional elections. “For America, the Saudis started the game with oil prices at the wrong time. This game hits hard on medium and small energy producers who are on the verge of bankruptcy. The worst thing during the economic downturn is the banking crisis.

“The appeal of 13 US senators to the Crown Prince reflects the US’s extreme concern about the negative impact of the oil showdown on the entire economy. Now we are talking not only about the fate of the oil shale industry in the USA, but about the possible collapse of the entire system of financial and trade relations, a new world crisis, the consequences of which will affect everyone, ”continues the ex-ambassador of the Russian Federation to Saudi Arabia, deputy chairman of the Association of Russian Diplomats Andrey Baklanov.

In addition to American Republican senators, President Trump himself turned to the Saudi crown prince, discussing the same sensitive issue with him.

Politico, citing its sources, reports on a March 9 telephone conversation between President Trump and the Saudi Crown Prince, during which the head of the White House tried to explain that a collapse in oil prices would not lead to anything good.

According to a Politico source, the conversation was difficult and, at the end, Trump stated literally the following: "I still want to make sure that we are on the same wavelength in this matter."

And one more detail: if you believe the leaks, urging the Saudi kingdom not to lower oil prices, Donald Trump recalled the support that the U.S. provided to Riyadh during a high-profile international scandal that erupted after the murder of journalist Jamal Hashokji in the Saudi diplomatic mission in Turkey.

However, Saudi Arabia is in no hurry to fulfill the requirements of its main ally.

The question arises, what is happening today in the relations of the main world oil superpower and the leading world superpower - a temporary disagreement, a system failure or a change of milestones. The answer lies in the difficult ups and downs of the history of the old allies, which knew its ups and downs and was much more controversial and ambiguous than it might seem at first glance.

The Saudi kingdom has served America faithfully for more than a decade. From the first days of the existence of the state of Saudi Arabia, created in 1932, its founder Abdel Aziz ibn Saud skillfully maneuvered between the West and Islamic radicals, using all possible means - money, diplomacy, intrigue and direct violence.

Successive Saudi monarchs have for decades been the backbone of the United States in a strategically important region. Of course, at the same time, the Saudi kingdom from time to time showed its ability to become a troublemaker.

So, in 1985, Saudi Arabia announced that it was no longer ready to limit oil production, and sharply increased production, flooding the markets with cheap raw materials.

During 1986, a three-fold increase in production led to a six-fold drop in world prices, triggering a wave of total dumping among oil racing participants.

It is generally accepted that then the USSR lost primarily from these actions, the economy of which went into a deep crisis and never came out of it. While the United States and its Western allies won. However, the fact remains: in the 80s, falling US oil prices led to a sharp decline in exploration and a local recession in oil-producing regions.

In general, despite all the reservations, Washington and Riyadh never crossed the red line in their relations and did not allow disagreements to spill over into conflict. In Washington they understood: while the ruling dynasty is in power in Riyadh, the United States by and large has nothing to worry about: the country-leader of OPEC will not put the bandwagon on the American economy.

The trial of bin Laden

However, a truly serious rift in relations between Washington and Riyadh arose two decades ago, at the end of the era of King Fahd, who died in 2005, having been on the throne for almost a quarter of a century.

The September 11 attacks, which were led by the international terrorist organization Al Qaeda, led by Saudi citizen Osama bin Laden, changed a lot. Moreover, a diplomatic earthquake following the attacks in Washington and New York, ironically, occurred at a time when Prince Bandar was the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States - perhaps the most pro-Western and pro-American Saudi politician of that time.

Recall that his personal close friends were George W. Bush and Barbara Bush, while working in Washington, he maintained close personal relations with the administration of George W. Bush.

A few hours after the attacks, a senior CIA official called (according to some information, then CIA director George Tenet) Bandar: “Do you know that 16 out of 19 hijackers are Saudis?” He indignantly.

“I felt like the towers of the World Trade Center had collapsed on my head,” Bandar recalled. At the very beginning of the US operation in Afghanistan, Prince Bandar was giving interviews to the American media and was pleased to take part in talk shows, emphasizing that Riyadh had severed relations with the Taliban.

However, then Bandar suddenly disappeared from the pages of newspapers and television screens and, as if with water, got into his mouth.

According to leading American media, in informal conversations he began to complain that the Allies underestimated the specifics of the situation in the kingdom, where the Islamists enjoy widespread support for the Arab street. And therefore, impose unrealistic demands on the royal dynasty, pushing it to confront the influential opposition.

Meanwhile, other voices sounded from Riyadh, increasingly critical of the United States and the West. One of them, the foreign policy adviser to the royal family, Adele al-Jubair, arrived in Washington, complaining that the administration of George W. Bush did not understand the specifics of the Saudi situation. The meaning of his annoyed speech was as follows: the fact that the attacks in the United States were committed by the Saudis does not mean anything. It is not necessary to demand from us the fight against terrorism, as it is understood in Washington.

We do not intend to tighten the screws even further, succumbing to American pressure. You want too much from us, broadcast Adele al-Jubair.

The statements of the Saudi leaders have also noticeably changed. At that time, Crown Prince Abdullah, who, under the conditions of King Fahd’s illness, actually ruled the country, dared to declare that "in a number of Arab countries there is growing indignation over the fact that the United States is turning a blind eye to the casualties among Palestinian civilians."

And the head of the Saudi Arabian Interior Ministry, Naif ibn Abdel Aziz, even demanded that the United States extradite Riyadh to his subjects captured in Afghanistan and based at the US Navy in Guantanamo Bay. Saudi citizens "must be returned to their homeland, where they will be brought to their own court," said Abdel Aziz.

In the old days, the Saudis did not allow themselves to speak so harshly, but now, obviously, they were forced to make concessions to the radicals within the country.

When the throne staggers

What happened? The explanation lies in the domestic political situation that developed in Saudi Arabia in the early 2000s. At the end of the King Fahd era, the ruling dynasty in the Saudi kingdom was going through hard times. The elderly and seriously ill king went abroad for treatment, while Riyadh lived with the tense expectation of a regime change.

Then no one had any doubt that if the ruling dynasty did not stand, then the Islamic regime, who hate the West, would lead the new regime. And in this case, all the victories of the Americans, which they have already achieved or will still achieve in the Middle East, will turn into a serious defeat - the loss of Saudi Arabia.

There were more indications that the Saudi throne was staggering and the influence of Islamic radicals was rapidly increasing in the kingdom. The unusually corrupt regime of the ruling clan of Sudairi, steeped in luxury, caused an increasing rejection among the inhabitants of the kingdom.

The country's population was growing rapidly (in 1975 it amounted to 7.3 million people, and by 2000 reached 20 million). However, the regime was not particularly concerned about the creation of new sectors of the economy and, accordingly, additional jobs - what to worry about when there is oil?

Meanwhile, unemployment has reached, according to some, 30%. The bulk of the unemployed were young people, many of whom received a decent education: annually 200 thousand people received diplomas of higher educational institutions, but only a small part of them managed to find a job.

Such people were greatly impressed by the stories about how some prince happily lives in a palace of 55 rooms with 26 gilded toilets. Religious radicals easily found grateful listeners and loyal followers among these people.

In the south-west of the country, the province of Asir, from which hijackers of planes that destroyed the World Trade Center on September 11, came from, arranged demonstrations of solidarity with the kamikaze and helped their families.

All condemned the royal family for corruption and complete dependence on the West. Authorities responded with arrests.

When a terrorist kamikaze blew up a shop in the eastern city of Al Khobar that foreigners liked to shop, local residents expressed admiration for this terrorist act. Saudi jihad veterans in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Chechnya turned into a powerful independent force - there were more than 25 thousand of them in the country. And almost everyone considered the king and courtiers to be traitors to the cause of Islam because of friendship with America. Their relationship with the authorities continued to deteriorate - hundreds of veterans were arrested. And those who remained free recruited volunteers for a new jihad. No one could guarantee that thousands of experienced and well-armed militants would not start fighting outside the kingdom.

Information about the global anti-terrorism campaign and the Palestinian-Israeli confrontation, coming through satellite TV channels, served as a strong irritant. It was perceived as a total Western attack on Muslims.

In the eyes of religious authorities and a large part of the public, the royal family looked like a friend of America and, therefore, a traitor to the cause of Islam.

Relations with the royal family and religious authorities deteriorated. Saudi Sheikh Mahmoud bin Oklaal-Shaubi, who was once the religious mentor of the Saudi Minister of Justice, was arrested in the early 2000s for subversive activities. When asked during the interrogation of the sheikh whether it was true that he had issued a fatwa calling for the royal family to be excommunicated from Islam, the theologian replied: “He who supports the infidels in the struggle against Muslims becomes himself an infidel.”

After that, the blind sheikh went to jail, but other influential sheikhs unanimously declared that al-Shaubi was absolutely right in his assessment.

The Islamists also found themselves in the hands of a religious education system. And in religious schools, it is imperative to study the Wahhabi manifesto, calling for the fight against infidels and those who support them, "by hand, language or money." In this situation, it was simply impossible to imagine that the Saudi oil treasures would also work for American power if someone like the Afghan Taliban or the Iranian mullahs came to power.

When the number one terrorist, Osama bin Laden, once banished from Saudi Arabia, ordered kamikaze pilots to ram the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon headquarters, he aimed not only at America. The second target of bin Laden and his followers was King Fahd's regime, which he hated. Planning the attacks in New York and Washington, they hoped that the blast wave would reach Riyadh - the inevitable radicalization of the Islamic world would undermine the Fahd regime and accelerate its decline, leading supporters of global jihad to power in Saudi Arabia.

After that, the "warriors of Allah" fighting the infidels will receive the only truly formidable weapon with which to effectively confront the United States - oil.

At one time, few people paid attention to the economic manifesto of Osama bin Laden, which explains a lot. Bin Laden blamed the United States for using its military presence in Saudi Arabia and its influence on the royal family for many years to keep world oil prices artificially low.

And thereby committed the “largest theft in history”, robbing the Saudis, and at the same time the entire Muslim world. The number one terrorist even managed to somehow calculate and name the amount that the United States stole - $ 36 trillion, in connection with which the American debt to each Muslim is about $ 30 thousand.

To bring America to its knees, it is necessary to make oil cost not $ 17 or $ 27, but $ 144 per barrel, Osama bin Laden calculated. The decisive role in the implementation of these plans, according to his plan, was to play Saudi Arabia.

After the physical liquidation of Osama bin Laden during the reign of Washington to succeed George W. Bush Barack Obama, many of the 5,000 Saudi princes who kept a total of about $ 600 billion abroad, continued to some extent sympathize with Islamic radicals . They were ready to finance their struggle, believing that the mountain of money on which they were sitting did not melt. Analysts in the West in this regard asked themselves the question: why did the Saudi elite, educated at Harvard or Cambridge and tasted the values of liberal democracy, secretly support those who want to return the Middle East to the Middle Ages? Perhaps leading a lifestyle that did not meet strict Islamic standards, the Saudi princes knew that they could always try to buy the location of those

And in this way to get rid of sins.

Looking at the uncontrolled Saudi billions, creating the conditions for the emergence of dozens of new terrorists, Washington pondered that the colossal efforts spent on eliminating the terrorist number one and al-Qaeda are greatly depreciating.

If at all do not lose their meaning.

As a result, at the end of the King Fahd era, at a secret meeting in the Pentagon, Saudi Arabia was first named the enemy of the United States.

The Saudi authorities were accused of the most active support for international terrorism at all levels: financing, training and ideological cover. Pentagon experts have strongly recommended that the Bush administration put an ultimatum to King Fahd’s regime: stop producing new bin Laden, otherwise you will lose the main thing you have — cooperation with America.

Cracking Syria and Iran of contention

The history of US-Saudi relations in the 21st century moves on the principle of a pendulum. Moreover, each decade has its own systemic crisis.

Under the administration of George W. Bush, Osama bin Laden quarreled between the two countries on September 11, and under his successor Barack Obama, the parties took different approaches to the war in Syria and relations with the main geopolitical rival of the Saudi kingdom - Iran.

A new phase entered the acute phase in the fall of 2013, when the same Prince Bandar came to the forefront, announcing that Riyadh had scaled down its cooperation with the United States in protest against their policies in the Middle East.

The main dissatisfaction was caused by President Obama's refusal from the operation in Syria and a reset of relations with Iran.

The severity of the conflict is evidenced by the fact that the Saudis then went on an unprecedented demarche: they refused their first place in the UN Security Council.

A sensational statement that Saudi Arabia will radically redefine its relations with the United States, Prince Bandar made in the port of Jeddah, where he invited a group of European diplomats. The content of the statements of the head of Saudi intelligence and one of the most influential politicians in the kingdom was stated by a diplomatic source in Riyadh. “We have a decisive turn from the USA. The Saudis no longer want to be in a dependent position, ”said Prince Bandar, recall that before that he had worked as an ambassador in Washington for 22 years and earned a reputation as one of the West’s friendliest Saudi politicians.

The departure from the United States implied a reorientation towards regional allies and France, which took a tougher position on the Syrian issue than Washington.

Explaining the meaning of the decision to abandon the seat in the UN Security Council, where Saudi Arabia was elected for the first time, Prince Bandar then said: "This is not the UN signal, but the United States."

Confirmation that the prince’s remarks were not improvisation, which was not coordinated with the country's top leadership, was harsh remarks about the United States from the lips of other influential Saudi politicians.

“All this clowning with international control over Assad’s chemical arsenal would be ridiculous if it weren’t for such an outright betrayal. Its meaning is not only to allow Mr. Obama to reverse, but also to give Assad the opportunity to kill his people, ”said Prince Turki al-Faisal.

The topic of an unprecedented US altercation with a leading ally in the Persian Gulf became one of the main news of 2013 and significantly affected the activities of the “Friends of Syria” conference, an international coalition created to support the Syrian opposition.

In this situation, the Barack Obama administration tried to get away from the aggravation with Riyadh. "We understand: Saudi Arabia is disappointed that there has not been a military operation in Syria, but we hope for continued cooperation," said Secretary of State John Kerry. "I am confident that the United States and Saudi Arabia will remain friends and allies."

However, it seemed that the paths of Washington and Riyadh diverged further and further. In Saudi Arabia, the influence of radical Islamists continued to increase, with the position of which the ruling dynasty could not ignore. The Saudi monarch maneuvering between the West and Islamic fundamentalists was forced to look more and more at the latter.

Confirmation of this was the radical position of Riyadh in Syria, proceeding from the need to overthrow the secular regime of Bashar al-Assad there.

The quarrel with Saudi Arabia could well become a serious geopolitical defeat for the White House. After all, Saudi Arabia not only hosts the largest US Air Force base in the Gulf “Prince Sultan”, but also has a key role to play in ensuring America’s energy security by preventing the collapse of world oil prices.

In Washington, they again were forced to think about the fact that Saudi Arabia is the leader of OPEC, which accounts for 25% of the world's oil reserves and 10% of the oil supplied to the American market.

In addition, most of the Saudi assets, amounting to an astronomical amount of $ 690 billion, are invested in American securities.

Realizing the price of the issue, Republicans accused President Obama of surrendering the interests of a strategic ally. “I fully understand what Saudi Arabia is doing,” said John McCain, one of the Republican leaders and rival Barack Obama in the 2008 election. According to him, the actions of Riyadh were the result of "American weakness."

In 2016, a few months before leaving the White House, Barack Obama paid a farewell visit to Saudi Arabia, trying to relieve tension in relations between strategic allies. Meeting with the leadership of the kingdom, the outgoing head of the White House wanted to convince regional allies that the US policy in the Middle East that had been pursued over eight years of his reign was not a failure.

However, despite official assurances that the meeting between King Salman and President Obama “cleared the air” in the relations between the two countries, the differences between Washington and Riyadh became increasingly apparent, touching on a wide range of issues - from Iran, Syria and Libya to the attitude to the attacks 11 September and human rights.

Savior Trump

It would seem that the successor to Barack Obama Donald Trump, who made the Saudi kingdom a truly royal gift, should have corrected the situation.

Going to break the nuclear agreement with Tehran, which the previous administration in Washington was so proud of, Trump did everything possible to weaken the position of the main regional rival of the Saudi monarchy.

Having visited Riyadh on a “historical visit” in May 2017, Donald Trump expressed “high confidence” to King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who, according to him, “know exactly what they are doing.”

During Donald Trump’s first overseas tour following his election as president, Washington and Riyadh signed a series of agreements worth $ 280 billion, including the largest defense contract in US history, amounting to almost $ 110 billion. In addition, joint investment projects were approved for the development of technology, infrastructure and housing, as well as the petrochemical industry of the kingdom. And the Saudi state oil company Saudi Aramco signed agreements with American partners totaling $ 50 billion. The final document of the Saudi-American summit in Riyadh was a declaration of long-term partnership. “The United States and Saudi Arabia will devote all efforts to strengthen strategic partnership in the 21st century, charting a new path to a peaceful Middle East, where economic development,

The declaration also outlines the intention of the countries to confront joint challenges, especially extremism, which “threatens stability and security in the Middle East.” Riyadh and Washington reaffirm their common desire "to embark on a new initiative to develop defense cooperation, counter extremist ideology and prevent the financing of terrorist groups."

Prince Reformer

Soon after this visit, large-scale internal reforms began in the Saudi kingdom. Their initiator was the king’s son, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who proclaimed the Vision 2030 program. The main directions of the new strategy, designed to strengthen the regional leadership of Riyadh, were to restore the authority of the authorities, open the country to the outside world and reduce dependence on oil.

The changes in Saudi Arabia promised to radically change the face of the world oil superpower and the leading monarchy of the Persian Gulf, which not only remained a key US ally in the region, but continued to be considered one of the mainstays of Wahhabism, which has the status of an official religion in the kingdom. “This is not just another stage in the struggle for power, but also a clear signal that modernization will continue, despite attempts by certain elements in the government to prevent it and maintain the existing status quo,” an expert on Middle East University explained to Kommersant Oxford Justin Dargin. According to Kommersant’s interlocutor, “in the current situation it is impossible to separate the fight against corruption from the policy of structural changes in the economy, designed to make a conservative religious“ gas station state ”

Even before the proclamation of the Vision 2030 program, Prince Mohammed bin Salman made a sensational statement that already in 2020, Saudi Arabia “could live without oil.”

The Vision-2030 strategic program provides for the large-scale privatization of state-owned companies, such as Saudi Aramco (market value in mid-December 2019 reached $ 2 trillion), a sharp increase in investment policy, and the development of the tourism industry.

According to Saudi reformers led by Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in the long run, such a policy should reduce the kingdom's dependence on oil exports.

Grigory Kosach, professor of the faculty of world politics at Moscow State University, on the reasons for the tightening of Riyadh's oil policy

The first sign of structural changes requiring personnel reshuffles was the resignation of oil minister Ali al-Naimi in May 2016, with the participation of which the agreement on reducing world oil production was disrupted in the negotiations of the OPEC countries in Doha in April of that year. It is noteworthy that the OPEC + agreement to reduce production was reached later, after the removal of Ali al-Naimi, who has been the head of the key Saudi department since 1995.

With his departure, the Ministry of Oil also ceased to exist, instead of which the Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources was supervised by the oil industry.

“Speaking of historical parallels, many of Muhammad bin Salman’s reforms, including economic transformations, weakening of religious orders and arrests of corrupt officials, resemble the reign of the English king Henry VIII, who was also a reformer and pragmatist of his time, breaking down the competing institutions of power and remaking them under himself, said Roslyn Fuller, professor of the Solonian Democracy Institute, who is now in Dublin. Kommersant explained. for the new institutions, which will occupy the niche vacated in the course of its reforms. "

What's next

Thus, the current reluctance of the Saudi crown prince to make concessions to Donald Trump on the issue of regulating world oil prices is not just a manifestation of obstinacy or ambition of the young Saudi leader.

Rather, it is a desire to rid the country of the traditional image of the US global gas station, motivated by the determination to transfer it to the top geopolitical league.

Will the Crown Prince satisfy Donald Trump's request?

“It seems to me that this will be done. Regardless of the US-Saudi disagreements related primarily to the development of events in the Middle East geopolitical space, deep economic and military relations between the two countries were and remain the basis of their interaction, explained Grigory Kosach, professor at the Moscow State University faculty of world politics.

“Saudi Arabia always emphasizes that the formation of this interaction was determined by economic, not political, reasons. In other words, bilateral economic ties arose earlier than the establishment of diplomatic relations. And the appeal of the American senators about this is not mentioned at all between the lines, ”the expert continues.

It is noteworthy that in Saudi Arabia today they are already discussing Trump’s victory in the upcoming US presidential election as an almost undeniable fact and the desirability of this victory for Riyadh.

“The support of the one who is seen as the future head of the American state in Saudi Arabia is likely to be in the interests of the actual ruler of the kingdom, with an enviable stubbornness smashing his potential enemies. Mohammed bin Salman never forgets for a moment that Iran is an adversary of his country, and Trump is a fierce champion of confrontation with Tehran. To help the American republican ruling class in a specific political and economic situation, for the Saudi leader will mean helping himself, ”the expert summarizes.


Sergey Strokan






Edited by Tomasz
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