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Author Topic: Saudi Arabia & the Arabian Peninsula  (Read 20952 times)
G M
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« Reply #100 on: April 20, 2016, 10:01:22 PM »

Actually, if we were to seriously produce oil like we have the potential to do, their usefulness is seriously reduced.


Asked and answered:

Frankly I am not so clear as to why we need to kiss up to the Saudis. ...

... Though we would all prefer them to Iran. [and ISIS and al Qaida and Boko Haram etc.]

Take it one step further, some of the 'moderate' Arab states will soon be allies of Israel, because Israel never was a threat to them and the common enemies Iran, ISIS etc. are.

The Kingdom is a strange place but they are our strategic ally.

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #101 on: April 28, 2016, 10:23:39 AM »

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/saudi-arabia-brink-vikram-mansharamani?trk=eml-b2_content_ecosystem_digest-hero-14-null&midToken=AQEM_FYkB3NwIQ&fromEmail=fromEmail&ut=1uDiFxsOzlN7c1
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DougMacG
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« Reply #102 on: May 03, 2016, 12:15:35 PM »

My former customer, Saudi builder Binladin, reportedly cuts 50,000 jobs.

Construction company Saudi Binladin Group has laid off 50,000 staff, a newspaper reported on Friday, as pressure on the industry rises amid government spending cuts to survive an era of cheap oil.

http://www.cnbc.com/2016/04/30/saudi-builder-binladin-reportedly-cuts-50000-jobs-as-government-cuts-bite.html

(Can't really say no relation to the famous al Qaida leader.)

It's not only North Dakota feeling the squeeze.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #103 on: May 20, 2016, 11:28:07 AM »

Forecast

    Although Islamic State-related attacks in Saudi Arabia have increased over the past year, strikes against hard targets still appear to be out of reach.
    For al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the end of a more than one-year unofficial truce with the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen puts Saudi targets back in the crosshairs.
    Saudi authorities may struggle to maintain control of the jihadist threat as Islamic State fighters return from Syria and Iraq with more advanced skills.

Analysis

Jihadism has deep roots in Saudi Arabia, the second-largest source of foreign militants in Iraq and Syria since the Syrian civil war began in 2011. Since the mid-2000s, Saudi security forces have contained the jihadist threat in the kingdom, aware of the economic and security dangers it could pose if left unchecked. But in the past year, Islamic State activity in Saudi Arabia — and a recent series of raids against alleged militants — has raised fears that the threat may be growing beyond authorities' control.

Saudi Jihadism: A Chronology

The jihadist threat in Saudi Arabia is nothing new. In mid-2002, al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia launched a campaign of attacks in the country against both foreigners and the Saudi government. Saudi authorities eventually dismantled the group, forcing its members to flee the country. Many relocated to Yemen, where they helped to found al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

Aside from a failed 2006 assault on the Abqaiq oil collection and processing facility, an amateurish attack in 2007 that killed three French citizens, and a foiled assassination attempt against Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Nayef in 2009, Saudi Arabia has been eerily quiet. But the calm was shattered in 2015 when militants associated with the Islamic State began bombing mosques in Saudi Arabia's restive Eastern Province in an effort to inflame sectarian tensions in the kingdom.

Before long, the attacks spread beyond Eastern Province and Shiite targets. After a series of raids in Taif in early July 2015, Saudi officials stopped a man wearing a suicide vest at a roadblock in Riyadh on July 16. To avoid capture, the man detonated his device, setting off a government crackdown that led to the arrest of over 400 alleged Islamic State supporters within two days.

The following month, a suicide bomber detonated explosives inside a mosque in Abha, a city in western Saudi Arabia. The attack killed 15 worshippers, including 10 members of a special Saudi state security unit, and wounded many others. Since then, three other attacks against Shiite mosques in Eastern Province have occurred, along with a handful of small bombings in Riyadh and several assassinations of police and security officers. In addition, a number of raids against Islamic State members have been conducted in Riyadh, Dammam and Asir.

A raid outside Mecca on May 5 sparked a firefight that left four Islamic State fighters dead. Saudi security forces fatally shot two of them — one of whom had been named a suspect in the Abha mosque bombing — and the remaining two detonated suicide bombs to avoid capture. The same day, two other Islamic State members were allegedly arrested in Jeddah. Three days later, two gunmen killed a security officer who thwarted their attempted attack on a police station outside Taif.
A New Generation

These attacks differ from al Qaeda's operations in the early 2000s, which targeted foreigners and employed large vehicle bombs. Al Qaeda's Saudi branch understood the importance of expatriates to the Saudi economy and sought to cripple it by driving them and their families out of the country. Al Qaeda's campaign included assassinations, armed assaults on expatriate housing compounds and even an attack on the U.S. Consulate in Jeddah. In April 2004, the U.S. Department of State issued a travel warning, advising U.S. citizens to defer travel to the country, and ordered all nonessential diplomatic and consular staff to leave Saudi Arabia.

The threat environment could change even more as Islamic State fighters return from Iraq and Syria, bringing with them experience gained on the battlefield. Like the previous generation of al Qaeda operatives in the kingdom, the Islamic State fighters could use their honed skills to conduct more complex and strategic attacks. Both groups have a history of attacking tourist attractions in Egypt and Tunisia to undermine those nations' economies. A more sophisticated Islamic State campaign might echo previous al Qaeda initiatives, targeting expatriates to impair the Saudi economy.

Don't Forget al Qaeda

In addition to the growing Islamic State menace, Saudi Arabia faces a renewed threat from AQAP. Following the March 2015 Saudi-led intervention in Yemen's civil war, al Qaeda and the Saudi coalition reached an unofficial truce: The Saudi coalition would refrain from attacking the group in exchange for the jihadists' cooperation in fighting Houthi forces and former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh. AQAP benefited greatly from this arrangement, seizing the opportunity afforded by the chaos to snatch up large quantities of money, weapons and manpower while it controlled Mukalla. Despite losing several key leaders to U.S. airstrikes, the group is now arguably stronger in terms of men and resources than it has ever been.

But the truce fell apart on April 25. Coalition forces entered Mukalla after AQAP withdrew to avoid heavy casualties. As a result, the group will likely begin to attack coalition forces. Furthermore, it could draw on its increased might to relaunch efforts to export terrorism to Saudi Arabia. Since Saudis have always constituted an important component of AQAP, the group could try to use its ties in the kingdom to facilitate new attacks.

Despite the surge in jihadist activity in Saudi Arabia over the past year, there is currently no sign that Saudi authorities will lose control of the threat. Nonetheless, potential targets in the kingdom must practice heightened awareness as they look for signs of change in the jihadist threat, such as attacks on oil infrastructure or expatriates, the use of larger and more sophisticated explosive devices, or increased surveillance on possible attack sites.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #104 on: May 20, 2016, 07:49:42 PM »

second post


18WednesdayMAY 2016

POSTED BY MISHGEA | May 18, 2016 11:33:21 | ECONOMICS
≈ 28 COMMENTS

Liquidity Crunch or Worse

Saudi Arabia burnt through its reserves faster than anyone thought.

In signs of a huge liquidity crunch, at best, the country has delayed paying contractors and now considers paying them in IOUs and tradable bonds.
In retrospect, the Saudi threat to dump US assets looks more ridiculous than ever.

Please consider Saudi Arabia Considers Paying Contractors With IOUs.

Saudi Arabia has told banks in the country that it is considering giving contractors IOUs to settle some outstanding bills, according to people with knowledge of the discussions.  A projected budget deficit this year is prompting the government to weigh alternatives to limit spending. Contractors would receive bond-like instruments to cover the amount they are owed by the state which they could hold until maturity or sell on to banks, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Contractors have received some payments from the government in cash and the rest could come in “I-owe-you” notes, the people said.
The government started delaying payments last year to prevent the budget deficit from exceeding $100 billion after the oil slump.

Beyond a Liquidity Crisis

Deficits don’t shrink if you delay paying the bills. Deficits arose because more money was spent than collected.  On May 17, the Senate Passed a Bill Allowing 911 Victims to Sue Saudi Arabia.  Obama threatens a veto. Meanwhile, Saudi threatens to dump $750 billion in U.S. securities and other American assets if the bill becomes law.

Does Saudi Arabia even have $750 billion. Color me skeptical.

Saudi Arabia’s bluff that it would sell US assets if the Obama signed the bill seems more ridiculous than ever.

For discussion of Saudi involvement in 911 and the alleged dumping threat please see Understanding the Saudi, Chinese “Economic Nuclear War” Threat; Saudi 911 Round-Up.

For discussion of Saudi Treasury holdings, please see Treasury Department Finally Discloses Saudi Treasury Holdings – Incorrectly?

There is no “nuclear” economic threat by Saudi Arabia or China as some have proclaimed.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
 
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ccp
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« Reply #105 on: September 22, 2016, 06:39:26 PM »

I don't at this point, agree.  This opens up a whole can of worms. This could very well come back to bite us.   Sounds like a big money grab to me.

 My mind could be changed possibly:

https://www.conservativereview.com/commentary/2016/09/obama-is-defending-the-saudi-government-agains-911-families

And families were already compensated from donations:

http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/06/news/economy/911_compensation_fund/
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #106 on: September 22, 2016, 09:01:27 PM »

Please post in the Legal Issues in the War on Islamic Fascism thread as well.

FWIW, at present, I lean towards opposing this bill.
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ccp
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« Reply #107 on: September 28, 2016, 08:27:21 PM »

One would think this strategy comes from the LEFT.  Instead this time it is driven by the Right in an ass backwards way to spite Obama.  I dunno .

Apart that this sets a precedent that will be used against us Saudi Arabia will retaliate:

http://www.breitbart.com/national-security/2016/09/28/saudis-allies-warn-us-retaliation-911-bill/
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #108 on: October 20, 2016, 12:20:22 PM »

Good morning. As it contemplates an initial public offering of its state-run oil company, Saudi Arabia launched the sale of $17.5 billion of debt Wednesday, people familiar with the situation told the Journal, in what would mark the largest emerging-market bond issue ever. It is the kingdom’s first international bond sale, a bid to support a sweeping effort to keep its economy afloat as oil income dwindles.
The sale is the latest example of a Persian Gulf state turning to international markets to offset declining oil revenues. Other oil exporters from the Gulf region raised $20 billion in total through international bond issues earlier this year. The issue would exceed Argentina’s $16.5 billion debt sale as the biggest from an emerging-market economy. For better or worse, there are $67 billion in orders for the debt, which seems to indicate a certain comfort level at nearly four times oversubscribed. The global plunge in oil prices has cast doubt about investor demand for shares in Saudi Arabian Oil Co., the world’s largest player.

 
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #109 on: February 17, 2017, 12:19:03 AM »

http://www.dailywire.com/news/13535/islamophobic-saudi-arabia-deports-40000-muslim-michael-qazvini?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_content=102516-podcast&utm_campaign=beingconservative
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #110 on: May 19, 2017, 08:36:56 AM »


By Karen Elliott House
May 18, 2017 7:10 p.m. ET
12 COMMENTS

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

President Trump will receive an effusive welcome here from his royal hosts determined to underscore that once again Saudi Arabia and the U.S. are close allies. Barack Obama favored Iran, but that’s over. King Salman, 81, is gathering 50 Islamic leaders to meet Mr. Trump. This unprecedented assembly is intended to show not only that Saudi Arabia is the leader of the Islamic world but that Muslim leaders support the U.S. against Islamic State terrorists.

While the elderly monarch is host, the indisputable power behind the throne is his young son, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, 31. He is orchestrating a two-day summit spectacular that will star Donald Trump and the new face of Saudi Arabia—a country now enjoying once-forbidden entertainment and a much larger role for women, who may be allowed to drive as early as this summer. Conservatives seethe but can’t block change.

The young prince and the president have much in common. Both are outsiders, brash, unorthodox and new to politics. Each faces strong opposition at home. Both seek to spur economic growth by reducing the role of government. And each is fighting orthodoxy: MBS, as the prince is known, wants to curb the role of religion and tradition, which inhibit modernization, while Mr. Trump battles leftist orthodoxy and political correctness. Both are smart marketers.

Mr. Trump’s presence is an opportunity for the prince to show off his modernization effort. An extravaganza featuring something for everyone—the Harlem Globetrotters taking on a Saudi basketball team, car races, country singer Toby Keith —is intended to convince Americans there is a new, open Saudi Arabia and Saudis that mixing cultures and sexes isn’t evil.

How can the son of a king be an outsider? In a culture that reveres age, especially among the royal family’s thousands of princes, the appointment last year of a young man who isn’t a senior prince, nor even his father’s eldest son, came as a shock. Like Mr. Trump, Mohammed bin Salman faces a “resistance” in the form of determined opponents among his royal relatives. Social media has created a “virtual opposition” by enabling disgruntled citizens to express their views.

So both the prince and the president seek success to bolster their leadership, easier to achieve in diplomacy than domestic affairs. Given the badly frayed state of U.S.-Saudi relations, Mr. Trump is guaranteed a win, at least with Saudis, because he isn’t Barack Obama. The president has further pleased Riyadh by making this his first stop on his first foreign trip. No president has ever put Saudi Arabia first so visibly.

But the Saudis want concrete support once Air Force One lifts off for Israel, Rome and then a NATO summit in Brussels. Both countries see Iran as a threat, but the U.S. president demands more burden-sharing from allies. So the prince, who also is defense minister, is said to be ready to invite the U.S. military back to Saudi bases vacated in 2003 in the face of opposition to foreign troops in the land of the two holy mosques. Riyadh is fighting a costly war against Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen, and the prince wants more U.S. support.

If the leaders agree to return the U.S. military here, it would mark a significant new commitment to Saudi Arabia’s defense—and surely be seen by Iran as a provocation. It would be a clear triumph for both leaders—and a repudiation of Mr. Obama’s exhortation that Saudi Arabia “share the neighborhood” with Iran.

The U.S. wants to curb Iranian expansion but may be cautious about new entanglements as Saudi-Iranian tensions are rising. Prince Mohammad recently slammed the door on any dialogue with Iran, insisting that Tehran seeks domination of the Muslim world. “We know we are a major target,” he said. “We will not wait until the battle is in Saudi Arabia, but we will work so the battle is there.” Iran immediately warned that if Riyadh persisted with “such stupidity,” nothing will be “left in Saudi Arabia except Mecca and Medina.”

Beyond bases and Islamic nation support in the fight against ISIS terrorists, King Salman seeks to tie the House of Saud to the Trump family. The king has just named another of his sons, Khalid, 29, a former fighter pilot, as ambassador to the U.S. Sending his son to Washington is a very personal gesture to a president with family working in the White House.

Prince Mohammad faces much tougher domestic challenges than President Trump does. The prince has to transform an economy and society long addicted to oil revenues, which have collapsed, and persuade coddled Saudis they must work. Mr. Trump is trying to raise U.S. GDP growth to 3% from 1%; Saudi Arabia has no growth. Mr. Trump seeks to spur U.S. energy production, while the prince is suppressing Saudi production to stabilize prices, in part weakened by growth in U.S. oil production. The U.S. got good news that unemployment is down to 4.4%. Saudi unemployment officially is 11%, but among the 70% of Saudis under 30 the true figure is triple that.

Mr. Trump, for all the angry opposition at home, is more secure than the deputy crown prince. Should his father die, a new king may remove Mohammad bin Salman. Some Saudis believe King Salman will promote MBS to crown prince and thus next in line to be king—but he hasn’t yet done so.

Regardless of these uncertainties, Mohammed bin Salman is confidently pushing ahead with ambitious plans to transform Saudi Arabia. Like Mr. Trump, the prince needs some clear wins over the next several years—an end to the costly Yemen war; successful privatization of Aramco, the national oil company, and other government companies set for public sale. He must persuade skeptical citizens that his plans will in coming years provide Saudis a prosperous life without dependence on oil.

Ms. House, a former publisher of The Wall Street Journal, is the author of “On Saudi Arabia: Its People, Past, Religion, Fault Lines—and Future” ( Knopf, 2012).
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #111 on: May 19, 2017, 09:33:41 AM »

second post

https://clarionproject.org/5-things-trump-saudi-arabia/
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #112 on: May 24, 2017, 11:38:04 AM »

https://www.wsj.com/articles/why-opec-plans-oil-cuts-into-2018-aramcos-ipo-1495567353?mod=e2tw
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #113 on: May 25, 2017, 02:16:38 PM »

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair-crooke/isis-wahhabism-saudi-arabia_b_5717157.html
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ccp
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« Reply #114 on: May 25, 2017, 04:10:54 PM »

I am not sure I disagree with Rand on this one.  I understand the bolstering up of Saud against Iran and *maybe * but on the other hand Osama Bin Ladin was a Saudi.  Why would not believe the arms will simply get siphoned to our enemies?  I know the Sauds showed off a building with 200 computers to combat terror but...........

http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/senators-trump-arms-sale/2017/05/25/id/792425/

I would sign off on this if Netanyahu feels it is a good idea.  Just  my take .
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #115 on: May 25, 2017, 04:34:53 PM »

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alastair-crooke/isis-aim-saudi-arabia_b_5748744.html
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