The Saudis seem to have some hidden influence over American affairs, but I am not sure why. From time to time, I see Saudi Arabia mentioned as a moderating force in the global oil cartel. And I have read articles that suggest the Bush family had a close relationship with the Saudi royal family over the years (see photo above). I believe it was partly to protect Saudi Arabia that the elder Bush blocked Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait.
Then there was that puzzling business about the Saudi royals being allowed to fly home from Tampa after 9/11 although the US airspace was supposedly closed.
Now, I see that they’re mad at the US because Americans aren’t being sent to die in that toxic Syrian uprising and because President Obama talked on the telephone with the new Iranian president. Some “prince” who is head of the Saudi intelligence operation is warning that his kingdom will make a “major shift” in relations with the United States.
He is quoted as saying his regime “plans to limit interaction with the US.”
As far as I can determine from this far away, the Saudi royal family is awful. From what I’ve read and seen on TV, the princes – some of them, anyway -are self-indulgent, arrogant despots. And I can’t find words ugly enough to describe the way Saudi Arabians treat their women.
Do we need their oil so badly that we have to kowtow to these creeps?
I would imagine recent shale oil and natural gas developments in America and Canada would significantly reduce Uncle Sam’s reliance on their oil. And I hope future American Congresses will have enough sense to pursue an aggressive “green energy” policy.
So, I don’t think we are going to need Saudi Arabia and its princes as much as we used to.
Of course, they have money, lots and lots of it. And I bet they have huge investments in US government bonds. They might even own US real estate and chunks of US corporations. The way global finance works, it’s hard to tell who really owns what.
But, from what I know of them, the Saudis’ money is not very desirable. I would be almost as uneasy about accepting their investments as the government is about “laundering” the loot from organized crime.
Of course, what do I know?
I only know what I hear on TV and read in the newspapers and on the internet.
I could be misled. In reality, Saudi Arabia could be a veritable Utopia and its princes could be a bunch of benign patriarchs with hearts of gold.
But I doubt it.