Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Deep State Worried About Al Saud

Another installment in The New York Times' irregular "Secrets of the Kingdom" series appears on the front page this morning.

"Saudi Royal Family Is Still Spending in an Age of Austerity," by Nicholas Kulish and Mark Mazzetti, focuses on "Al Saud Inc.," an "insider" name given to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) that attempts to capture the toxic mixture of Wahhabism, big oil (Saudi Aramco) and an extended, profligate royal family.

Al Saud is obviously in the cross hairs of "the newspaper of record," along with Russia, Fake News and Donald Trump. But in this case, by going after KSA, the Gray Lady is on the side of the angels.

Even within the Deep State, on behalf of which The New York Times speaks, there is a realization that the Kingdom, if left to its own devices, will destroy the neoliberal New World Order.

I think it is too late. The damage has been done. Europe, because of the refugee crisis unleashed by the House of Saud's adventures in Syria and Iraq, is going to find its own way. We'll see that this March.


  1. Huge migrations disrupt settled nations, and that's before the whipped up Wahhabism of the House of Saud's kingdom of mosques around the world is dished out to Europe. If the US and its EU servants wanted to create fear, they also created anger.

    Using the various iterations of the Muslim Brotherhood (Mujahadeen, al Qaeda, al Nusrah, al Sham, ISIS, whatever) to drive reactionary fascist formations around the world had a limited chance of success for a limited time. America's strategy has been directed against Russia (and to a lesser extent, China) and it is pretty obvious that what was and won't be the EU was used by the US to destroy Russia's petroleum industry. It didn't work. It just becomes more obvious that Europe's economic future is not under the heels of German and American bankers, but in commerce with the East. If nothing else, Exxon's dealings with Gazprom suggests that part of the Deep State were ready to move past the Cold War memes that stood in the way of them making money in the Arctic.

    Not only is Saudi Arabia a delicate mess that could collapse and end the US's Middle Eastern dominance, Netanyahu's Israel has piggybacked on the Saudis' game and may find itself like those little Christian principates that popped up in the region during the Crusades. It will either have to come to an understanding with its neighbors or eventually lose to demographics.

  2. Thanks for your comments, Bob. One of the interesting things in the guts of the article has to do with the royal family's demographic time bomb. Estimates right now peg the House of Saud at 15,000 royals and growing. Aramco can't maintain the perquisites for all of them indefinitely. But if King Salman begins paring back, there will be a regal rebellion.

    So in addition to the demographic time bomb of Saudi subjects -- too many young people, not enough jobs -- the royal time bomb makes predictions of a collapse of the Kingdom much more promising.

    Diplomats with experience in Riyadh say the royals eventually come together so as not to tip over the gravy train. But the reality with which they will have to reach an accommodation is likely something that they cannot accept. That's why another interesting aspect of the story is an alleged increase in royals moving capital out of the Kingdom.