Government Watch / National Security / Opinion / Politics

Stronger US-Saudi Alliance – This is the Time

Saudi

President Biden will visit longtime American ally Saudi Arabia next month. The trip is overdue, reasons obvious, differences over human rights, progress toward democracy, and regional conflict secondary – to firming up the security alliance.

Ironic is one word for how Biden behaves. As Vice President, he helped his family ink millions in shadowy deals with human rights offender Communist China, plus Ukraine. He denied ever discussing the issue with his son, while flying him to both locations on Air Force Two.

When a Ukrainian prosecutor began investigating the company his son was part of, Biden – then Vice President – threatened the prosecutor, demanded that he be removed, and was proud of both.

As Senator, he met with war criminals, including Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic, for several hours. He then called President Bush’s meeting with the Israeli Knesset “bulls**t.”

Biden pushed for close relations with Communist Cuba, responsible for the death of countless innocents and suppression of millions, summarily reversing President Trump’s anti-communist sanctions. Biden offered Putin a “minor incursion” in Ukraine, which produced a massive war.

After President Trump flew to Riyadh and inspired 80 Arab and Israeli leaders to focus on peace, then created a new paradigm for Mideast security, trade ,and peace with the Abraham Accords, Biden scoffed.

Bob Gates, former Defense Secretary and CIA head, wrote Biden got just about every foreign policy decision he ever made wrong. He doubled down in 2021. Not to disappoint, Biden has kept on going – cowering to the Taliban, leaving 100,000 allies to whom the US military and State Department promised safety, behind to die in Afghanistan.

Biden has repeatedly covered his ignorance, failed planning, and dissembling with flippancy, anger, misstatements, and pretend principle, only to reverse course – when he sees fibbing does not sell.

So, here we are again. The United States has had a strong relationship with Saudi Arabia for more than half a century. They were pivotal to early US advantage – beginning all the way back in 1945, when US President Franklin D. Roosevelt met with then-Saudi King Abdul Aziz Ibn Saud. The meeting was pathbreaking, vital on everything from oil and wartime support to post-war geopolitical cooperation. It set in motion the next three-quarters of a century – and, decades later, helped guide the two nations to closeness through the Cold War.

In time, the relationship grew stronger, with the US benefiting from Saudi oil and anti-communist positions, the US enhancing trade, providing arms for regional security, and eventually helping Israel remain secure within the region. In time, King Saud came to power in 1953, and following FDR’s example, President John F. Kennedy met with him in 1962.

With Nixon as President, arms sales to Saudi jumped from $16 million to $312 million, a reflection of trust and stability not a regional war. Under King Faisal, 1973 was rough when the Saudis joined an oil embargo of the West, but this passed.

In 1974, the US signed another security pact, and by 1975, arms sold topped $2 billion, including fighters. By 1979, security, protection of oil markets, and anti-communist sentiment were solid. Jimmy Carter sent F-15s to the Saudis. 

Later, Ronald Reagan provided AWACs and other arms. Interestingly, in a quiet passing along of sentiment, Ronald Reagan had Donald Trump at a White House in 1985 with the Saudi king.

When Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990, the US sent half a million soldiers to Saudi, in part to protect the Kingdom, as well as to free Kuwait. This was under President George HW Bush. More than 5000 troops stayed, although 9/11 set relations back again. Trump helped recover them.

Having heard Saudi gratitude in person after the first Gulf War, spent time on security oversight for Congress in Dhahran, met with Saudi leadership on diplomatic missions, even before serving as Assistant Secretary of State for Colin Powell, the alliance was and is important.

All this brings us to, now.  The key now is that history matters, and the Abraham Peace accords started by Trump are alive – despite Biden’s efforts to minimize, even sideline them. While other issues will need to be discussed, including the future of Palestinians of all religions, they offer the best step forward to a wider regional peace.

This should be – although it may not be – a point of discussion as President Biden sets off for Saudi next month. Also, on the agenda must be how to create a regional security pact that deters, and if necessary, responds to a nuclear Iran.

A nuclear Iran is a boulder that would swamp the region, creating a mad dash among Sunni countries to prepare for a potential nuclear engagement with Iran, or to deter such an event. Wider peace, synchronized with this kind of security accord, would be valuable beyond words.

In the near term, the same Biden who glibly met with murderous Communist Chinese leaders, who met with war criminals in Bosnia, who sang the praises of Communist Cuba, and has been silent on ravages of communists and autocrats globally, should get down off his high horse on Saudi.

Yes, human rights are important and need to be raised, driven home as a US priority. Yes, trade in Saudi oil – which Biden desperately needs now that he shut down much of the US energy sector – is important. Yes, arms sales, as well as a more democratic or liberalizing Saudi are important – and should be acknowledged, encouraged, and advanced. 

But the biggest point Biden should make, is that the two countries – as they have for more than 70 years – have a great deal in common and need each other’s support. They are a buttress against chaos and calamity, as well as Chinese and Russian overreach into the Middle East, and nuclear war. 

The time has come to make real the pledges that have stood the test of decades, and to restart what was recently stopped, in favor of advancing world peace, trade, energy, conventional, and nuclear security. If not now, when?


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Gloria
1 month ago

If Biden didn’t pre Communist China over the United States, he never would have hut down our over-flowing oil well, burned up food processing plants, mandated everyone get the bioweapon shot and over and over and over.

Casey C Matt
1 month ago

I hope the Saudis kick Brandon out of the country and perhaps then force his brain dead husk to open the Keystone Pipeline and free up drilling and fracking in our own country.
Or Brandon could just do us all a favor and………..croak

Max
1 month ago
Reply to  Casey C Matt

“Brandon” will not reverse any executive order that he has issued since it will go against his climate policies. His strings are being controlled by more evil authority.

Jerry
1 month ago

This is scary. there is no telling what a screwup is possible with Crazy Sleepy Joe over there. He probably bowed down to the Saudis like Obummer did.

Doris Anderson
1 month ago

I did enjoy this article, the history in it. Helps to understand today. I will lift up my prayers for a successful outcome of the meeting to come. Thank you.

Bob L.
1 month ago

Saudi Arabia – A very questionable ally at best, a sheep in wolf’s clothing most likely.

Mecca, the “holy” seat of all Islam is in Saudi Arabia.

15 of the 911 hijackers were Saudi citizens.

Osama bin Laden and his family are intimately connected to the Saudi royal family.

Remember the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamil Khashoggi IN the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in 2018? He wrote columns critical of the Saudi government and crown prince bin Salman which were not appreciated by the royal family. After he was murdered, his body was cut up and smuggled out of the consulate and disposed of by some Turkish co-conspirators.

anna hubert
1 month ago

He shut down our energy sector and now comes with hat in the hand to Arabs .Have we fallen through the rabbit hole? is this real or are we in a twilight zone

Gloria
1 month ago
Reply to  anna hubert

We are living in Obama/Biden zone of totalitarianism, by mean of destruction.

CoNMTX
1 month ago

I can’t wait to see what Joey’s visit will cost America. I’m sure he will give away millions of dollars in cash and equipment. I hope Joey will take his cheat notes so he doesn’t forget what country he’s in and to whom he is talking.

Philip Hammersley
1 month ago

Joey insults the Saudis and the crown prince and then goes hat-in-hand to BEG for more oil! Does he think that is going to work? Whoever ordered the death of the FAKE journalist, it was the Saudis’ business, not ours! He was in league with the terrorists in Yemen.
Will we be able to survive until 2025?

CoNMTX
1 month ago

To me, it’s an insult to any country to deal with the leader of another country that is as loopy as Joe. His very presence is an insult. Let me talk with a qualified, mentally capable person who knows how to sit at a table without notes.

PaulE
1 month ago

RBC,

Rule one of negotiating is to always deal from a position of strength, if you expect to succeed in obtaining your goals. Biden and his handlers have put the United States in a position of weakness, when in comes to negotiating with just about any foreign country at this point. Especially so with any oil producing country like Saudi Arabia, now that Biden has destroyed America’s energy independence and made us, once again, completely dependent on OPEC for our crucial energy needs. So there is little to no real incentive for the Saudis, at this point, to give Biden anything he wants from them as he is forced to grovel before them hat in hand. What a stark contrast between Biden and Trump.

Point two, the Saudis are NOT stupid. They see Biden and his administration EXACTLY for what they are and the Saudis have apparently made the decision that the United States, under such leadership, would NOT be a reliable strategic partner. The debacle of Biden’s botched handling of Afghanistan sent a clear message to the entire world that this administration is completely feckless. That is being charitable by the way. As such, the Saudis have been working much more closely with the Chinese for many months now as Iran nears its goal of attaining nuclear weapons to threaten or actually use against its enemies. One of which is Saudi Arabia, as it would threaten Iran’s dominance in the region. All while the United States continues to bend over backwards to Iran, so Biden can have a diplomatic win hopefully before the midterms.

So tell me RBC, if you were Saudi Arabia or any country in the Middle East outside of Iran, why would you be so inclined as to grant Biden anything he asked for? Biden and his administration have made it very plain they have NO INTEREST in changing course on anything, so where is the incentive on the part of the Saudis to accommodate Biden and a weakened United States under his leadership?

Doris Anderson
1 month ago
Reply to  PaulE

Your last paragraph makes a good point and is thought provoking.

Max
1 month ago
Reply to  PaulE

It will be another “dog and pony show” where Biden will end up with egg on his face and continue to spell out how great he is while blaming the common American citizen for the country’s woes.

Jerry
1 month ago
Reply to  Max

He will have to go by his “to do” list.

Jerry
1 month ago
Reply to  PaulE

That dumba$$ will probably GIVE our oil to them, just like hiLIARy stuffed her wallet with Russian cash when she sold 20% of our uranium to them. They are trying to force the “Green New Deal” on us by getting rid of our fossil and nuclear fuels.

John D. Beach
1 month ago

Fundamentally, our differences are religious, thus, moral and ethical. If and since the tension in the Middle East is due to these differences, the same should be (and, practically, is) true of our domestic situation. The concept of economic compromise for security reasons is hypocritical, in contrast. Environmental concerns do not justify the hypocrisy and it is an unacceptable weakness, worthy of disdain by Muslims, who may overlook it, for economic reasons. Biden appears to not even recognize these blatant facts and continues to look very weak, a tragedy for leadership.

Boz
1 month ago

Don’t trust the Saudi’s one millimeter.

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