Fun WikiLeaks Facts, Part 1: The Saudis Want US Military Strikes Against Iran

 

But of course, if we did, the Saudis would publicly condemn US military strikes against Iran.  And if you understand that, then you understand everything there is to understand about the Middle East.

From NewsMax:

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia repeatedly exhorted the United States to “cut off the head of the snake” by launching military strikes to destroy Iran’s nuclear program, according to leaked U.S. diplomatic cables.

The April 2008 [classified diplomatic] cable detailed a meeting between Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. military commander in the Middle East, and then-U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker, King Abdullah, and other Saudi princes.

At the meeting, Saudi Ambassador Adel al-Jubeir “recalled the King’s frequent exhortations to the U.S. to attack Iran and so put an end to its nuclear weapons program,” the cable said.

“He told you to cut off the head of the snake,” Jubeir was reported to have said.

I’m torn.  Part of me is gratified that the Saudi leadership has such a clear-sighted grasp of the dangers of a nuclear Iran.  Part of me is irritated by their hypocrisy.  And another part of me (I have lots of parts, okay?) wonders when, exactly, the Saudi leadership is going to show actual leadership — when, for instance, it’s going to say publicly what it acknowledges privately: that Iran is a dangerous threat, that military action is probably inevitable, that the United States is a force for good in the world, and that Israel — all of 11 miles wide in some places — isn’t the root of cause of the rotten state of the Middle East.

Put it this way: would King Abdullah be okay if Israel went ahead and “cut off the head of the snake?”  Does it matter who kills the snake, as long as it’s dead? 

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  1. Profile Photo Member
    @WyleeCoyote

    There was a report in June that the Saudis were practicing standing down their air defenses so as to allow an Israeli strike across their airspace. This was publicly announced.

    Wikileaks makes a lot of noise, but it’s remarkable how unsurprising most of their stuff is to anyone who’s paying attention.

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  2. Profile Photo Inactive
    @flownover

    Isn’t it pretty hard to negotiate with a monarch when your head is about level with his navel ?

    • #2
  3. Profile Photo Inactive
    @Harlech

    Maybe the Saudis and their Gulf Arab neighbors can muster 100+ planes (they already own these) and take matters into their own hands.

    • #3
  4. Profile Photo Editor
    @RobLong
    Harlech: Maybe the Saudis and their Gulf Arab neighbors can muster 100+ planes (they already own these) and take matters into their own hands. · Nov 29 at 3:35pm

    I know it’s wrong, of course, and a crudely unforgivable thing to wish for, but a little bit of regional warfare between Arab/Muslim countries wouldn’t be an altogether bad thing, would it? From a purely cold, calculating, amoral perspective? Wouldn’t it be better to have them fighting it out amongst themselves for a couple of years, to give the rest of us some peace and quiet?

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  5. Profile Photo Member
    @BillWalsh

    I suspect King Abdullah would be very much pleased if the IAF were to “kill the snake” but whether he would (or could) say so is, as you say, a whole ’nother deal.

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  6. Profile Photo Inactive
    @CaptAubrey
    Rob Long

    , but a little bit of regional warfare between Arab/Muslim countries wouldn’t be an altogether bad thing, would it? From a purely cold, calculating, amoral perspective? Wouldn’t it be better to have them fighting it out amongst themselves for a couple of years, to give the rest of us some peace and quiet? · Nov 29 at 5:19pm

    I think Henry Kissinger said something to that effect back when Iran and Iraq went at it and maybe he was right. On the other hand, being at war is the perfect way for a despot to consolidate his power and justify his paranoia. I expect “Little Squinty” to quote John Derbyshire, knows this all too well.

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  7. Profile Photo Member
    @TripedisCanis

    Why do I get the feeling that King Abdullah sees the US military in the same way he sees his parking valet? Since he wants us to take care of this little mess for him, perhaps he wouldn’t mind if we took a side trip and dealt with some madrasses in Riyadh, as long as we are in the neighborhood . . .

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