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Prince Turki Wants America To Believe It "Needs" Saudi Arabia
A few comments:
1) No favors need be done Saudi Arabia -- none. Saudi Arabia sells oil to whomever pays the market price. End of story. There is no more need to do any favors for Saudi Arabia, or for the Al-Saud family, than there would be to offer the man who owns the gas station down the street all kinds of special favors -- babysitting, cleaning his house, working on his oldest child's college application -- because as long as you pay for the gas, you get the gas.
2) Saudi Arabia is, despite the trillions it has taken in since 1973 alone, economically weak and helplessly dependent on oil revenues. It is also dependnent on continued access to Western education, Western medical care, Western technology, Western everything. The West, on the other hand, and the advanced East, are dependent on nothing that Saudi Arabia has to offer except for the oil that it must sell. And ideally, the Western world will start to impose much higher taxes on gasoline and oil, prompted in the main by legitimate worries over global warming, and recognizing the need to make the price of oil and gasoline reflect the real cost of that oil and gasoline (which should include, at a minimum, the several trillion dollars spent in Iraq and surrounding Middle Eastern countries).
3) If Americans were banned from working or visiting Saudi Arabia, if all Westerners were so banned, if all non-Arabs or even all non-Saudis were so banned, no one would be hurt except the Saudis.
4) Since 1973 various groups of Western hirelings -- beginning with former ambassadors and intelligence agents stationed in Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf Arab states, and ending with academics, journalists, businessmen of every kind - have been promoting two ideas, both of them wrong and easily shown to be wrong.
The first is that Saudi Arabia is our "staunch ally" when it is Saudi Arabia that has financed not only Al Qaeda, but a dozen other terrorist groups, and that through its support for mosques and madrasas world-wide, in Dar al-Harb, and for Wahhabi imams in formerly less extreme mosques, in such places as West and North Africa (why, just the other day an article in the Algerian El Watan deplored the distribution by the Saudis, in Algeria, of French-language Qur'ans with the text accompained by Wahhabi-flavored commentaries). Saudi Arabia is the most dangerous of all Muslim countries, paying for campaigns of Da'wa, and Muslim missionary activities all over the world.
The second is the notion that the Saudis do us favors either by keeping the "price of oil down" or by investing in the Western world. The Saudi pricing in OPEC -- and by and large the Saudis are no longer able to move prices very much, because their own production is less easily ratcheted up or down -- is determined only by the calcuylation of what given price, at a certain given time, will maximize current revenues and the value of the oil reserves. This requires a constant recalculation of how elastic demand for oil is, the political climate in the oil-producing nations that might make them more, or less likely, to impose their own taxes on the use of oil, and if so, by how much, and so on. Saudi Arabia does not now, and never has, done the Western world any favors through its attempt to control prices. It has always had one goal: to maximize its own rofits.
And what about the Saudi hioldings in U.S. dollars? That too is not based on any desire to help the American economy, but only to maximize the value of Saudi holdings in dollars. Too precipitous a letting go of such assets would cause problems with all dollar-denominated assets (and the oil contracts are in dollars).
Saudi Arabia is the most dangerous enemy the Western world has. Prince Al-Turki is one of those who is attempting - with whatever group of Western speechwriters he has working for him -- to fool the unwary.
But every day, the ranks of the unwary diminish.
It's late in the day for "Saudi" Arabia.