LEADER OF THE FREE WORLD” DISSED IN RIYADH
We wrote yesterday how U.S. president Barack Obama was kowtowing to Saudi Arabia – our “partners in peace” – in an effort to kill legislation that could help hold the country responsible for its role in the September 11 terrorist attacks.
Naturally the Saudis welcomed Obama to Riyadh with open arms, right?
Um … not so much.
From CNN …
When Obama touched down in Riyadh shortly after 1 p.m. local time, there were no kisses with the kingdom’s ruler as President George W. Bush once exchanged. The Saudi government dispatched the governor of Riyadh rather than a senior-level royal to shake Obama’s hand, a departure from the scene at the airport earlier in the day when King Salman was shown on state television greeting the leaders of other Gulf nations on the tarmac.
Social media users quickly termed the reception, which was not carried live on state TV, a snub and a sign that a relationship long lubricated by barrels of oil is now facing deep questions on both sides.
What? No kisses? A lack of lubrication?
Why all the hate? Saudi Arabia is mad at Obama for reaching a nuclear deal with Iran – one that should have easily been blocked by the “Republican-controlled” U.S. Senate (but wasn’t thanks to U.S. Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee).
The kingdom is also irate at former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for her role in supporting the overthrow of former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.
Saudi Arabia’s leaders also upset that America’s costly intervention in Iraq led to the establishment of a Shia Muslim government (the Saudis are Sunni Muslims). In fact there is some speculation that the kingdom has been supporting the efforts of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in response to this development.
And of course who can forget the Saudis role in the Syrian conflict …
Ah yes, our “partners in peace.”
Bow down, Barack. Bow down …