Ron Paul: US Should Welcome Saudi “Shift”

Last week it was reported that Saudi Arabia decided to make a “major shift” away from its 80 years of close cooperation with the United States. The Saudi leadership is angry that the Obama administration did not attack Syria last month, and that it has not delivered heavy weapons to…

Last week it was reported that Saudi Arabia decided to make a “major shift” away from its 80 years of close cooperation with the United States. The Saudi leadership is angry that the Obama administration did not attack Syria last month, and that it has not delivered heavy weapons to the Syrian rebels fighting to overthrow the Assad government. Saudi Arabia is heavily invested in the overthrow of the Assad government in Syria, sending money and weapons to the rebels.

However, it was the recent diplomatic opening between the United States and Iran that most infuriated the Saudis. Saudi Arabia is strongly opposed to the Iranian government and has vigorously lobbied the US Congress to maintain sanctions and other pressure on Iran. Like Israel, the Saudis are fearful of any U.S. diplomacy with Iran.

This additional strain in U.S./Saudi relations came at the 40 year anniversary of the Arab oil embargo of the U.S. over its support of Israel in the 1973 Yom Kippur war. At the time, the embargo caused quite a bit of trouble for Americans, including gas shortages and long lines at the filling stations. A repeat of this move, however, would not have the same effect on the U.S. economy. Though it would not be desired, these are not the 1970s and oil is now a more fungible commodity no longer solely in Arab hands.

Why does Saudi Arabia insist that the United States fight its battles? The Saudis are strongly opposed to the governments in Syria and Iran so they expect the U.S. to attack. It is their neighborhood, why don’t they fight their own wars? Israel shares the same position in the region as Saudi Arabia: it has been fighting to overthrow Assad in Syria for years, and Israeli leadership constantly pushes the U.S. toward war on Iran. They are both working on the same side of these issues but why do they keep trying to draw us in?

We have unwritten agreements to defend Saudi Arabia and Israel, which keeps us heavily involved militarily in the Middle East. But when the U.S. becomes so involved, we are the real losers — especially the American taxpayers, who are forced to finance this global military empire. Plus, our security guarantee to Saudi Arabia and Israel creates a kind of moral hazard: there is little incentive for these two countries to push for more peaceful solutions in the region because the U.S. military underwrites their reckless behavior. It is an unhealthy relationship that should come to an end.

If Saudi Arabia and Israel are so determined to extend their influence in the region and share such similar goals, why don’t they work together to stabilize the region without calling on the US for back-up? It might be healthy for them to cooperate and leave us out of it.

One of Osama bin Laden’s stated goals was to bankrupt the U.S. by drawing it into endless battles in the Middle East and south Asia. Unfortunately, even from beyond the grave he continues to successfully implement his policy. But should we really be helping him do so? If Saudi Arabia wants to pull back from its deep and unhealthy relationship with the United States we should welcome such a move. Then we might return to peace and commerce rather than sink under entangling alliances.

ron paul

Ron Paul is a former U.S. Congressman from Texas and the leader of the pro-liberty, pro-free market movement in the United States. His weekly column – reprinted with permission – can be found here.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein October 27, 2013 at 4:02 pm

Always important to distinguish between the views of the people of a country and those of their government. While the Saudi government has been pro-US forever, the Saudi people (think Osama and the 911 hijackers) have become more and more anti- American. The opposite is true in Iran.

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 8:58 am

“Saudi people (think Osama and the 911 hijackers) have become more and more anti- American. The opposite is true in Iran.” Interesting isn’t it…If ol”RonBo had any clue what he was talking about he wouldn’t have written this one.

Freeway1996 October 28, 2013 at 1:41 pm

Iran’s human rights record looks like Switzerland compared to Saudi Arabia. The Saudis own huge chunks of US media corporations to keep the focus on Iran and not them. The Wahhabi terror machine is bankrolled by Saudi Arabia. The so called war on terror can end this year if you overthrow the al Saud regime.

? October 28, 2013 at 10:48 pm

I have a really hard time conceiving how those in the US administration could not see the short term strategic importance of maintaining the petro dollar and as such placating Saudi Arabia.

I mean sure, I’d like the trade to come crashing down in order to end the hegemony squashing not just us, but the world…but I think the Saudi’s are all bluff & bluster.

I don’t think they are ready for a post dollar world just yet.

Wake me up of the Saudi’s start negotiating with the BRIC’s to establish a Yuan based oil trade…until then I think this is much ado about nothing.

Frankly, if the Saudi’s ever actually did just that, I think it could kick off WW3…although I’d hope for a relatively peaceful US economic death, similar to the USSR.

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 2:44 am

And the streak comes crashing to a halt…

Ron you ignorant slut, do you really believe that “…Saudi Arabia and Israel…[would ever]…work together to stabilize the region without calling on the US for back-up?” If you do then you’re “religo-geo-politically” dumber than the already low standard I hold you to. If you don’t then you’ve demonstrated your guilt in what I refer to as your “goofy ideas” – why even suggest something that you have to know is a non-starter; the “House of Saud” would be overthrown in weeks if they were to ever “…work together…” with the descendents of “The House of David”.

USAFVetDan October 28, 2013 at 10:38 am

The scary thing is that you are allowed to tote a lethal weapon. Consider the main point. We suck when it comes to keeping peace and fostering stability in foreign lands. I point to Iraq as a current example. We should stop going broke pissing off most of the world for the sake of the multi-national corporations and bankers… and at the expense of the lives of our soldiers. Signed, USAFVetDan

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 1:00 pm

No doubt that “…we suck when it comes to keeping peace and fostering stability…” Oh wait, maybe not – there’s that highly productive nation known as South Korea where we’ve kept the peace and fostered stability and Japan and Germany and a bunch of other places. The problem isn’t our capabilities, it’s the inability of our Political establishment to mind their own freaking business. Afghanistan was never peaceful or stable and Iraq was that way relatively, only because the people had Sadam’s boot on their throat.
After 9/11, If I’d been the boss, we’d have flattened all of the terror training camps in Afghanistan along with the capitol and called it a day.

shifty henry October 28, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Somewhere in my stash of books saved for my golden years is one written by a British officer who served in Northern India about 1934-1939. He wrote about the problems with Afghanistan, their unreliability, cruelty, and tribal treacheries. Three-quarters of a century later NOTHING HAS CHANGED! Apparently no one in the US Military ever read or studied this book prior to sending our troops there. I’ll post the info for you when I find it (although you may already know about it).

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 4:30 pm

There have been any number of books written about the “problem of Afghanistan” and a lot of us have read them. I’m not sure which book you’re talking about but among my favorites are”:

The Bear Went Over the Mountains about the former Soviet Union’s experience there

Tournament of Shadows: The Great Game and the Race for Empire in Central Asia about the conflict between Great Britain and Russia for the region

Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan, and bin Laden from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 about our own pre 9?11 involvement in Afghanistan
Every single one of them points out the completely unreliable nature of Afghans as allies. Afghanistan is not a contiguous group of peoples, instead its borders were arbitrarily drawn by an Englishman and include Pashtuns and Tajiks who are nothing alike and have no love lost for each other and then ten or twelve other ethnic groups who are all at war with each other. Afghans have been ruled by everyone from Alexander to America – no one has yet to do it well or for very long. Smart munitions and dumb gravity bombs would have been a lot better response to this Hell whole than what we wound up doing

BlueCheeseSquirrel October 28, 2013 at 6:59 pm

I concur. It’s none of our business whether the Saudis and Israelis work together or hate each other’s guts. As you say, our young people are not dying for freedom anyway, they are dying for Corporate Interests. Let the Middle-East be stable or unstable, I don’t care. Treaties made in the past have guaranteed the death of our young in the future. George Washington warned us about entangling alliances.

8 year USAF vet. SSgt.

Jimmy Jordan October 28, 2013 at 11:45 am

Awww someones upset we didnt start WW3 in Syria.

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 1:08 pm

You must not come here often – I have clearly stated on a number of occasions that we have no compelling national interest in Syria and need to stay the Hell out. I’ve been in Jordan twice in the last couple of months. There ain’t a damn thing north of the Jordanian Border worth losing a single soldier over. If the Syrians get froggy and fire a missile into one of our regional allies – we simply return the favor in spades but we have no business putting a boot on the ground in that cesspit.

Craig Williams October 28, 2013 at 4:52 pm

That isn’t ignorant at all; it pragmatic. If you want to see all hell break lose in both Israel and Saudi Arabia, watch as the US dollar loses its position as The World’s Reserve Currency. Israel and Saudi Arabia both have every reason to not want to see that happen. Should that happen, Saudi Arabia and Israel will both be on their own overnight and both countries will be faced with internal dissent the US won’t be able to protect them from it as that has otherwise always been the case for both countries. Religion doesn’t have a damn thing to do with why it is either one of those countries is in the geopolitical position they both now occupy but instead they hang in the balance of a fiat currency which remains a reserve currency as a result of ongoing coercion. It is why the Emir of Kuwait was returned to the throne, why Iraq was attacked a second time after Saddam started selling oil for something other than petrodollars which is why Libya was attacked and why Syria’s and Iran’s economies have sanctions on them. It’s all about the all mighty dollar which isn’t all that mighty anymore. There will be a transition from it eventually because the US is running out of countries with economies it can prevent from trading oil for means other than dollars which will bring about the fall of the dollar as World’s Reserve Currency. The US can not control the economies of Russia or China by force and make them continue to play the currency game which then allows the US to write fractional loans based upon the collateral of dollars held in the coffers of third parties….It’s over. It was a hell of a run the last 40 years but it’s done. What is truly ignorant is to think Saudi Arabia and Israel haven’t already been working together since at least 1973.

The Colonel October 28, 2013 at 5:11 pm

Please cite some examples of Saudi – Israeli cooperation that did not involve a third party.

rain October 30, 2013 at 7:39 pm

When Russia and Iran attack Israel, i don’t think Saudi Arabia will join the attack. I’m relying on the bible.

Smirks October 28, 2013 at 8:48 am

Let the Saudis piss away their fortunes on interventionism if they want to, but if they want to get butthurt over us backing off, fuck ’em.

rain October 30, 2013 at 7:36 pm

A smaller US is a better US. I hope when the existing contracts are met, Saudi Arabia reconsiders its sales to the US. India needs the fuel more than the US. That says it all.

Craig Williams October 28, 2013 at 12:11 pm

First off, let’s separate propaganda
from reality. Let us put aside everything we were told as
schoolchildren and still yet cling to in hoping to not face what we
would rather not be burdened to otherwise understand. Wars, even the
ones we have been led to feel good about, have never at any time nor
most likely will they ever be, actually fought over their ‘stated’
purpose. No, it is wars are fought for only one reason and that is
over the power to manipulate wealth. Despite explanations given to
motivate the hapless to participate in war, it never has been that
ideology or religion or the well being of a citizenry is what really
causes for war. War is always about keeping the powerful in power or
to make the powerful more so powerful so they might further
manipulate more wealth. Any other righteous explanation is simply
stuff and nonsense.

Those with a vested financial position
in the US dollar’s status as World’s Reserve Currency and whom
because of that powerful position, are able to wield great special
interest influence on our government, and use our government to protect
the status of their franchise. The relationship is symbiotic.

Also symbiotic is the relationship
between those same interests with franchise to manipulate the World’s
Reserve Currency and prick, non-democratic human rights-violating
monarchies whom in exchange for absolute protection of their
generational sovereignty against both foreign aggression as well as
internal dissent, agree to only introduce new capitol to the world
market in such a way so as to preserve the dollar’s ability to
maintain its monopoly on energy exchanges and thus that of newly
introduce capitol.

In the 21st century colonial
dynamic, more wealth can be extracted from currency itself than that
which comes from newly introduced capital resources. No
‘Rainbow-Unicorn’ explanations of world peace or an intolerance to
genocidal chemical gassing or babies being thrown from incubators or
denominational differences of religion caused for the Emir of Kuwait
to be shown to the rest of the Arab Monarchies as being returned to
his throne; the Emir of Kuwait was returned to his throne because he
sells oil for nothing other than dollars just like the rest of the
monarchies who are protected for the very same reason by the
neo-colonial empire of the west. Conversely, countries such as Iraq,
Iran, Syria, or Libya which choose to bring new capital to market by
different means, thus challenging the currency monopoly, have their
economies utterly destroyed so as to prevent any such distribution of
new capitol by any means alternate to that which is produced by those
with the franchise to control the fiat dollar.

The House of Saud wants the economies
of Syria and Iran to only release new capital to market for dollars
or else see those economies otherwise utterly decimated because
should it be the US dollar loses its position as World’s Reserve
Currency which allows for exponential fractional lending, there no
longer will be any reason for the western neo-colonial empire to
protect the sovereignty of the House of Saud.

Mohamed October 28, 2013 at 2:00 pm

Right on. Can we talk about bringing justice for the Palestinian people?

Craig Williams October 28, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Sure we can talk about it, but unless and until American schoolchildren are no longer being lied to about how it is the formation of the United States somehow put an end to colonialism and that colonialism no longer exists in the world due to the fairy tale of ‘American Exceptionalism’, I seriously doubt that what is happening in Palestine will ever be seen for what it really is and most Americans will go on believing that what is happening in Palestine instead be best explained by something that has got to do with religious differences.

Not to say that I do not have empathy for the brazen human rights violations and economic sanctions unjustly being forced upon the Palestinian people, but I would be happy enough with American people coming to an understanding that the same types of transgressions are in fact coming to themselves. My own people are clueless that their own rights and well-being are also being threatened under the same nonsensical excuse which simply would not exist in the absence of a tyranny they are presently welcoming. At least it is the Palestinians aren’t welcoming their own oppression in exchange for a safety from something which hardly exists and wouldn’t at all exist if not for those who have convinced them that they are being protected when in fact we are being put at greater risk.

rain October 30, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Justice? They never wanted that.

rain October 30, 2013 at 7:24 pm

I am glad the US is experiencing diminished diplomatic influence


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