Why would President Biden support a policy of coddling Iran, the most dangerous Near East enemy, while alienating Saudi Arabia, a US ally since Franklin Roosevelt?
Biden’s recent visit to Riyadh, in pursuit of his political priority of lowering gas prices ahead of November’s elections, was an unmitigated failure. The White House has accused Riyadh of interfering in US domestic politics, threatening unspecified “consequences” despite its own apparent political motives, and aligning Saudi Arabia’s “energy policy with Russia’s war”. He said he would “re-evaluate” US-Saudi relations because of the decision. ”
Congressional Democrats quickly revived proposals to block arms sales to Saudi Arabia because of Yemen’s civil war and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Despite the administration’s attempts to make it appear that way, today’s oil price tensions did not arise in isolation. In fact, Biden may have naively believed he agreed when he didn’t, and international affairs scholars Simon and Garfunkel once said, “People hear what they want to hear and ignore the rest.” I will remind you that I warned you that
And it is clear that Iran is Russia’s true Middle Eastern ally, as the supply of “Kamikaze” drones shows. Retaliation against Saudi Arabia now does lasting strategic damage to Washington and indeed increases Moscow’s influence in Riyadh.
Biden’s misguided Middle East policy has had predictable consequences. In 2020, he was rhetorically brutal to the Saudis, saying, “We make it very clear that we are not actually going to sell them any more weapons. We’re going to make them pay the price and actually make them outcasts.”
He stressed that “Saudi Arabia’s current government has little social redemption value” and promised to “end the sale of supplies to Saudis who are in and killing children.”
This was strike one from the Saudi perspective, but later as president, Biden approved the arms sale to Saudi Arabia.
Strike 2 was Biden’s overall campaign against the oil and gas industry. He described climate change as an “unprecedented existential threat” and advocated essentially putting Saudi Arabia and other oil-producing Arab countries out of business. Biden wants to reduce our dependence on carbon-based fuels through all possible means, even as industrialized societies are complexly dependent on them. While the merits of Biden’s views are controversial and its chances of success questionable, his open hostility to industry at home and abroad is notorious.
Speaking of existential threats, Strike 3 from Riyadh’s perspective was Biden’s obsession with rejoining the deeply flawed 2015 Iran nuclear deal. To a candidate who emphasized the importance of mending America’s international alliances, Biden paid little attention to the horrors of Israel and the Gulf Arab states. It is in that very light that it continues to support terrorists such as Hamas, Hezbollah and Yemen’s Houthi rebels. Biden’s ignorance of Iran’s multiple threats reminds him of President Obama, but they rightly fear that he reflects an upside-down view of the Middle East that endangers not only them but the United States.
For Saudis, those three strikes alone could have easily justified rejecting Biden’s recent pleas. Riyadh has said its subsequent decision to limit oil production was based on a non-political economic analysis of the United States, and it is unlikely that the disagreement will be resolved soon. , what Washington will do next. As Senators Menendez (DN.J.), Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and others have argued, presumably with White House backing, eliminating or limiting US arms sales to Saudi Arabia , is just the wrong approach.
Yemen’s tragic civil war continues because of Iran’s relentless efforts to interfere in the backyard of the Gulf Arabs. It is Iranian agents in Yemen who have targeted civilian sites in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, including airports and oil facilities, using weapons supplied from Tehran. Tehran seeks to perpetuate the Houthi threat and gain immense strategic advantage in besieging the Gulf monarchy through the continued Iranian military presence in Yemen.the arms transport should do it The ceasefire is from Iran to the Houthis, not a US sale to Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates. The civil war is likely to find at least a partial resolution shortly thereafter.
Moreover, a truly key strategic issue in the region now is that the ongoing demonstrations in Iran, caused by the murder of a young Kurdish woman, Mertha Amini, by Tehran’s “morality police,” have led to the regime’s legitimacy. It is whether or not it expands to the extent that it threatens sex and existence itself. After years of widespread opposition to the Ayatollah’s unfair management of the economy, these new nationwide demonstrations have come as the number of striking workers in the oil and gas and manufacturing sectors increases. Enhanced.
Western journalists rarely appear outside Tehran, but Persian-language coverage on social media, including cell phone photos and videos, shows that the resistance continues and is growing. There are rumors that the security forces are refusing orders to crush the resistance or fleeing confrontations with daring demonstrators.
Ground truth is hard to come by, but one should not underestimate the ferocity with which the ayatollah will cling to power. In fact, in just six weeks after Amini’s murder, their atrocities killed more than 200 civilians and injured thousands.
The White House is falling on deaf ears at the very moment domestic opposition to the Ayatollah has reached unseen levels since it took power in 1979, putting pressure on Saudi Arabia instead of Iran.Riyadh and other Arabs quietly and effectively support the Iranian resistance, especially the Arab and Sunni ethnic and religious minorities, as the resistance is organized, planned and grows into a real counter-revolutionary force. safe haven outside of Iran. If Ayatollah falls, his successor will likely not sell drones to Russia.
Even former President Obama admits he was wrong not to do more to help protesters against the outright rigging of the 2009 Iranian presidential election. . Biden said, “Don’t compare me to the Almighty. Compare me to the alternative. Applying the same logic to the Middle East should make the choice easier for the administration.”
Gasoline price hikes in the US are due to Biden’s own inflationary fiscal policy (and the Federal Reserve’s persistently low interest rates) and restrictions on domestic oil production. After his election, Biden should stop blaming Saudi Arabia and look in the mirror.
John Bolton was the National Security Advisor President Trump He served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations from 2018-2019 and from 2005-2006, and held senior positions in the State Department from 2001-2005 and from 1985-1989. His latest book is “the room where it happened”(2020).he is the founder of John Bolton Super PACis a political action committee that supports candidates who believe in strong US foreign policy.