Saudi Arabia’s Influence

Here’s an analysis of the US-Saudi relationship, courtesy of [Fake] Grim.

This is the third page.

The Saudis also discreetly work Washington with the help of a few trusted “gatekeeper” organizations, a term used by Gwenn Okruhlik of the University of Arkansas in a 1997 article in Middle East Report. Among the key gatekeepers–DC think tanks, consultants and nonprofit foundations that the Saudis rely on as intermediaries–is the National Council on US-Arab Relations. NCUSAR puts out a variety of publications and sends Congressional delegations, military officials and academics to Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East. The council did not respond to requests for information about its funding, but its website describes NCUSAR’s supporters as “primarily individuals and institutions in the United States and the Arab world.” The council also sponsors a Corporate Cooperation Committee, which seeks to “inform American leaders and the public…about the shared interests and common concerns” of the United States and the six members of the Gulf Cooperation Council: Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. The group is chaired by Boeing, and the vice chairs are Lockheed Martin and Parsons Corporation, the latter a construction and engineering firm for the oil and gas industries.

When the Saudis need help on a particular matter in Washington, the kingdom’s US allies normally man the frontlines. Following the Gulf War, arms makers established an ad hoc organization called the Middle East Working Group to lobby for weapons deals to the Saudis. It retained as consultants a number of national security veterans including Dov Zakheim, a former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense under Reagan and the new Pentagon comptroller; Sandra Charles, who served on the National Security Council as director of Middle East affairs during the Bush Sr. years; and retired Lieut. Gen. Howard Fish, who once headed the Pentagon agency that handles foreign weapons sales.

Business support for the Saudis has extended into other areas as well. In 1998 corporations, mustered in a vehicle called USA*ENGAGE, mobilized to gut a bill that would have imposed sanctions on countries that persecute religious minorities. The bill was ultimately passed, but only after a preamble was struck that had called for an immediate investigation of Saudi Arabia and several other countries that were deemed guilty of widespread religious persecution. The bill also gave the President the right to waive sanctions if he determined that it was in the national interest. “Earlier versions of the bill were more extreme and lacked the loopholes that were included in the new version to minimize diplomatic tensions,” said a relieved account in The Oil Daily.

This more readily links events like Dick Clark’s action of allowing Saudis to fly out of the US after 9/11 without Bush’s authorization, with certain propaganda concerning Bush and Saudi Oil.

Like any web of lies, it is hard to disentangle what is true from what is false. Certainly we know that the State Department has been in league with Saudi Arabia and their perks for awhile now. Also, Saudi Arabia is trying to do the triangulation strategy of also working with Iran by calling Iraq a disaster of some such. They see their interests in a very peculiar light, and that light will most often not be in accordance with US interests and lives. SA buys off both Iran and Al Qaeda, as they do the US diplomats. It seems to be their modus operandi; using oil wealth to buy stability and protection. This is akin to the Romans using gladiatorial games and festivals to quiet the masses.

The State Department also tries to undermine the Bush policy of liberation in Iraq; and even if you assume they are not, their lack of motivation to help slows down the progress regardless. Yet if Bush were in league with the Saudis, he would also have to be in league with the State Department guys, so why would the State Department guys attack Bush if Bush was going according to the Saudi plan? You don’t see State and CIA leaking Saudi Arabian secrets, do you.

My current position is that Bush is relatively clean of Saudi Arabian influence, at least compared to his Leftist opponents in both the bureacratic sectors of government and the elected houses of Congress.

Explore posts in the same categories: Politics, War

2 Comments on “Saudi Arabia’s Influence”

  1. Grim Says:

    Well, no, this was from the troll pretending to be various regulars at BlackFive.

  2. ymarsakar Says:

    At first I thought it was that, since you don’t usually provide links or when you do, you quote them. But the article seemed sensible enough.

    You’re Grim of course, cause I traced the ip through wordpress.

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