Home Netanyahu Netanyahu has made MBS Central to His West Asian Structure – The...

Netanyahu has made MBS Central to His West Asian Structure – The Citizen


Who would have imagined that the homicide of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria on the Latin Bridge in Sarajevo in June, 1914 would sign the start of the First World Warfare. The conflicting empires and the stability of energy had been so precariously positioned that an assassination triggered the conflict.

Right this moment Syria, Gaza, Iran, Jordan, Yemen, Israel, US, Russia, UK, France, Turkey, Qatar, Russia, US – all are on edge, any ignition can flare up. There’s a temptation to magnify the aftermath of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s macabre dismemberment with bone saws and eventual liquefaction in acid within the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

But, a believable situation could be constructed that highly effective pursuits, decided to guard the embattled Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman will go to any lengths to save lots of him. Any diversionary journey will do. This diversion won’t be simple now although that the US Congress is deeply concerned and is already reacting to Trump’s insensitivity. Most unexpectedly, there may be egg on MBS’s face in Argentina the place he has turned up ostensibly to attend the G20 summit.

Ostensibly, as a result of his goal is to plead with leaders and soften Turkish President, Tayyip Erdogan who has, drip by drip, been leaking embarrassing intelligence particulars implicating MBS with the homicide.

An Argentinian Prosecutor has taken up the case in opposition to MBS for alleged crimes in opposition to humanity, conflict in Yemen and the Khashoggi homicide. Advocacy group Human Rights watch had petitioned Argentinian authorities to proceed in opposition to MBS when he turns up for the summit. It’s horrible publicity.

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made MBS the central column in his West Asian structure and can go to any lengths to guard him. In the direction of this finish he may embark on dangerous, diversionary expeditions. Netanyahu was the primary one to warn President Trump.

He utterly glossed over the Khashoggi homicide. It was immaterial to him whether or not MBS was responsible or not. The cardinal level for him was that the Crown Prince is an indispensable “strategic ally”. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo might nicely have taken the cue from him. Pompeo wrote within the Wall Road Journal:

“The Trump administration’s efforts to rebuild US-Saudi partnership isn’t standard within the salons of Washington, the place politicians of each events have lengthy used the Kingdom’s human-rights file to name for the alliance’s downgrading. The October homicide of Saudi nationwide Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey has heightened the Capitol Hill caterwauling and media pile on.” It’s a crafty draft, implying that the Washington elite was at all times averse to the Saudis and that the Khashoggi episode has solely supplied some grist to the mill. The thrust of the article is easy: a malignant energy, Iran, must be neutralized with MBS’s assist – homicide or no homicide.

A lot of the wordage is directed in opposition to Iran which in response to Kissinger (quoted by Pompeo) is a “trigger, not a nation”. To impede the advance of this “trigger”, MBS was an important requirement.

The tone of the defence will not be that Saudi-US relations should be preserved in any respect value. The unspoken emphasis is that MBS must be protected inside Saudi Arabia vis a vis different attainable aspirants.

It was to snuff out this narrative that Saudi International Minister Abdel al-Jubeir invited BBC’s Lyse Doucet to spell out the Kingdom’s pink line. “Any hypothesis on the Keeper of the Holy Shrines King Salman and the Crown Prince won’t be tolerated.”

To avoid wasting MBS, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi personally pleaded with Trump. It should in fact be remembered {that a} panic stricken MBS had personally turned up in Cairo to plead his case.

All method of speculations are rife however one risk stands out starkly: ought to the world’s energy centres permit Saudi impunity to cross, the subsequent part in West Asia can be scary, as a result of tracks must be swiftly lined. Khashoggi forgotten ideally within the din of some army motion. Already, US Defence Secretary Gen. James Mattis has met chiefs of GCC Armed Forces in Kuwait and Bahrain. These are two GCC nations with substantial Shia populations. Sports activities exchanges have been reported between Israel and Oman – and different GCC nations.

Lately Arab diplomats in Europe have been overtly discussing such topics as: does the Arab League serve a goal? GCC got here into being quickly after the Iranian revolution of 1979. Can it’s wound up. What’s being proposed is a tidy division of the Arab World into Sunni versus Shia. The venture is as previous because the hills. The final I heard Henry Kissinger and the late Zbigniew Brzezinski publicly speak in regards to the concept was on the Nobel Peace Prize Discussion board in Oslo in December 2016. The good benefit in giving primacy to the Shia-Sunni faultline is meant to be that it’s going to subsume the Palestinian story.

How naïve this line of pondering is has been burdened by, amongst a number of others, one of many extra skilled princes in Saudi public life: Prince Turki al Faisal. He was Intelligence Chief, Ambassador to US and UK. He has repeatedly warned the authors of Shia-Sunni faultline that the thesis was self-defeating: there are sizeable and influential Shia populations in most GCC nations. Practically 70% of Bahrain, 40% of Kuwait and 15% of Saudi Arabia are Shia. Certainly Saudi Shias are concentrated within the oil wealthy Japanese Province, linked to Shia majority Bahrain by a 37 kms causeway. Iran, Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen are all Shia majority states.

There’s a form of amnesia in opposition to all the Shia Fatimid dynasty which dominated most of North Africa and based the town of Cairo within the 10th century. The title of the ousted ruler of Tunisia, Zine El Abidin Ben Ali is of Fatimid extraction. No Saudi will ever preserve that title.

Palermo, the capital of Sicily, was as soon as the seat of Ismaili Shia energy, the place Muharram processions had been widespread from the 10th to 12th century. Tariq Ali’s novel “A Sultan in Palermo” covers this era.

Over 20 years in the past, in his elegant salon on the Nile, Sid Ahmad, distinguished author and public mental, confused me all of the extra on the query of Shia and Sunni in Cairo. He mentioned, “Many on this metropolis observe the dictum: Sunna bil deen; Shia bil hawa” (Sunni by religion and Shia by tradition).