Saturday, November 11, 2017

The new Saudi Crown Prince, the Iranian threat – and the drumbeats of war...

Inside Saudi Arabia, the agenda set out by Mohammed bin Salman, the young Crown Prince, is in motion. After last weekend's sensational purge of princes and government officials, his power seems unchallenged, bolstering his credentials as the man who would modernize a patriarchal society and a sclerotic economy overly dependent on oil.

Outside Saudi Arabia, it's a different story. Saudi Arabia and its arch-nemesis, Iran, are engaged in proxy battles that are marking parts of the Middle East map with bloodstains. In the past week, the tension between the two countries, which had been intensifying for years, turned potentially explosive. The trigger came when the Saudis shot down a ballistic missile they said had been fired by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen. Iran was behind the "act of war," the Saudis declared.

Prince Mohammed seems especially eager to restore his country's influence in the Middle East. His war in Yemen, his blockade of Qatar and the surprise resignation a week ago of Lebanon's prime minister and Saudi ally, Saad al-Hariri, indicate that the Prince is prepared to become highly aggressive in his offensive against burgeoning Iranian power. It is believed the Saudis forced Mr. Hariri's resignation, which was made in Riyadh, not Beirut, because his coalition government has provided cover for the Iranian-backed Shia political party and militant group Hezbollah, which is part of his coalition. Full story...

Related posts:
  1. Saudi Arabia. Arrest the usual princes!
  2. The Saudi purge: the Middle East on the verge of a new war...

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