Friday :: Jul 27, 2007

Bush Upset with The Saudis

by soccerdad

In today's NY Times we are told that the Bush regime is not happy with the Saudis.

Now, Bush administration officials are voicing increasing anger at what they say has been Saudi Arabia’s counterproductive role in the Iraq war. They say that beyond regarding Mr. Maliki as an Iranian agent, the Saudis have offered financial support to Sunni groups in Iraq. Of an estimated 60 to 80 foreign fighters who enter Iraq each month, American military and intelligence officials say that nearly half are coming from Saudi Arabia and that the Saudis have not done enough to stem the flow.

One senior administration official says he has seen evidence that Saudi Arabia is providing financial support to opponents of Mr. Maliki. He declined to say whether that support was going to Sunni insurgents because, he said, “That would get into disagreements over who is an insurgent and who is not.”

Senior Bush administration officials said the American concerns would be raised next week when Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates make a rare joint visit to Jidda, Saudi Arabia.

Officials in Washington have long resisted blaming Saudi Arabia for the chaos and sectarian strife in Iraq, choosing instead to pin blame on Iran and Syria. Even now, military officials rarely talk publicly about the role of Saudi fighters among the insurgents in Iraq.

At least on the surface this seems like the usual manuevering before a diplomatic meeting. However, this article brings up some interesting points. The US seems upset at everyone who has some interest in Iraq. The US wants to be left alone to occupy Iraq and do things the way they want. But the Saudis most likely see the US screwing up in Iraq. Although the US can leave, the Saudis can't and will be left dealing with mess that Bush has made. The US has lost a lot of prestige and influence in the Middle East. And it has always seemed to me that the Saudis have played the US as much as the US has tried to play the Saudis. In the end its all about buisness and the more the US is bad for Saudi buisness the more they will distance themselves from the US.

The other aspect I have always found confusing, is that while the US rails against Iran, it supports a government in Iraq that is friendly to Iran. Meanwhile, the US has helped arm the Shite militia which then kill Sunnis who are supported by the Saudis our supposed ally.

Let's look at the above quote again. They claim that 60-80 foreign fighters enter Iraq every month. That's all?? From all the rhetoric from this administration I would have expected thousands. Obviously, this brings into question exactly how big and important al-Qaeda in Iraq is. So of course the US doesn't want to discuss exactly who is and isn't an insurgent. It would destroy the myth that the fighting is caused only by the civil war and foreign fighters. But's it obvious to all that a good portion of the fighting is directed at the occupiers by Iraqis, not foreign fighters.

soccerdad :: 3:01 AM :: Comments (15) :: Digg It!