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US-Saudi Relationship: Beyond the Obvious

Biden's recent trip to Saudi Arabia by way of Israel highlights "progressive" delusions about the true nature of the collisions between the three government

An adage favored by Claud Cockburn as well as Otto von Bismarck advises "Never believe anything in politics until it has been officially denied."

Indeed, it should be a clear tenet of political analysis that stated goals are frequently not actual goals. US war planners used rhetorical concerns over non-existent Iraq WMDs as a pretext for invasion. Alleged human rights preoccupations were falsely heralded as the rationale for NATO bombings in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and Libya.

One reason it was clear in real time that the US establishment was putting forward false pretexts in those cases was the contrast with the US relationship with Saudi Arabia and Israel.

But stated goals are not always false.

The bulk of the discussion over Biden's visit to Saudi Arabia framed it as an attempt to get some relief for US consumers paying $100 to fill up their gas tanks.

Interestingly, that largely contradicted what Biden was actually saying: "The commitments from the Saudis don't relate to anything having to do with energy. ... And it has to do with national security for them -- for Israelis. ... It has to do with much larger issues than having to do with energy."

But that was frequently ignored in the media discussion. That is, on a rare occasion when a US politician was indicating that he was focusing on geopolitical goals rather than working for the benefit of US consumers, this very real possibility was remarkably marginalized.  

For example, Mehdi Hasan on MSNBC stated: "Whatever we're getting from this meeting [with Saudi leader MBS] maybe, maybe a slight fall in gas prices, is it really worth selling out the family of Jamal Khashoggi, the people of Yemen, and our own moral authority and values?"

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Aug 2nd, 2022 at 04:25:46 PM EST

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