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Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

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Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 27 Dec 2010 18:14

Saudi Arabia is a religion based totalitarian state of 20 million people with 7-8 million expatriates. It's oil based GDP is 600 billion USD. It is the home of Wahhabism which is the official state religion and that state religion is being exported using Saudi funds to other countries. 97% of expatriates are Muslims

25% of Indian oil imports are from KSA

There are about 1.8 million Indians in KSA. India's average earnings from foreign remittances from the Gulf states is about USD 30 billlion - which is 30% of the total remittance from abroad.

The Saudi government is an extremely wealthy monarchy who have the money to make sure that KSA's sparse population is well fed and well cared for. The Royal family itself lives in extreme wealth and luxury and are basically protected by the USA.

The Saudis are sponsors and prime fund providers to Pakistan, which the sponsor and prime fund provider to terrorists in India. The Saudis are also thought to have funded Pakistan nuclear weapons program. So Saudi Arabia has a direct impact on India in several ways. I am hoping this thread can be a focus for the effect the Saudis have on India in terms of Pakistan, Islamic extremism and and a source of funds for terrorist groups.

I will post a few links with quotes that may be relevant to this topic:
http://www.time.com/time/world/article/ ... eedfetcher
The Saudis are long accustomed to having a significant role in Pakistan's affairs. A 2007 cable recounts a boast of the Saudi ambassador to the U.S., Adel al-Jubeir, who is reportedly a close confidant of King Abdullah: "We in Saudi Arabia are not observers in Pakistan, we are participants." The two countries have natural, enduring bonds: Saudi Arabia, an orthodox, monarchical state, is the custodian of Islam's holiest sites, while Pakistan was created as a state for Muslims. Over the years, Riyadh has invested billions of dollars of its oil wealth in Pakistan, while close to a million Pakistanis currently live and work in Saudi Arabia, their remittances home a vital source of income for Pakistan. Islamabad's Faisal Mosque, the biggest in the country, is named after a late Saudi monarch. "Pakistan is Saudi Arabia's No. 1 Muslim ally," says Arif Rafiq, head of Vizier Consulting, which advises on strategy in South Asia and the Middle East, and editor of the Pakistan Policy Blog. "The Saudis perceive in Pakistan a target population to influence and project its power upon, a set audience that may see it as the leading nation of the Muslim world."

Analysts have long observed that conservative madrasahs set up across the country with Saudi backing have helped spread a puritanical and intolerant brand of Sunni Islam that helps fuel the militancy that plagues Pakistan today. But the leaked U.S. cables also allege that extremist groups operating on Pakistani soil, such as al-Qaeda, the Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) "probably raise millions of dollars" each year in Saudi Arabia. An August 2009 cable points to a Saudi-based front company that LeT likely used to pool and move its money. Washington has urged the Saudi government to shut down its local sources of terrorist funding — and the leaked cables report positive steps in that direction — but Riyadh clearly lacks the means to totally turn off the tap.

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/ ... z19JhkvEk8


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pakistani_Armed_Forces
The Pakistani military's close ties to the nations of the Middle East are based on a combination of geography and shared religion. The closest ties are with Saudi Arabia--a sporadically generous patron; much of the equipment bought from the United States during the 1980s, for example, was paid for by the Saudis. The smaller Persian Gulf states also have been sources of important financial support.[24] The flow of benefits has been reciprocated. Beginning in the 1960s, Pakistanis have been detailed as instructors and trainers in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria, Libya, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates. Pakistani pilots, sailors, and technicians have played key roles in some Persian Gulf military forces, and Arabs have been trained both in their home countries and in military training establishments in Pakistan.



http://intellibriefs.blogspot.com/2010/ ... -with.html
09.12.2010 18:44

An American diplomatic document reveals a secret party of a Saudi Prince with alcohol, drugs, sex and prostitutes. In yet another flurry of secret documents of U.S. diplomacy, the site WikiLeaks showed, in great detail, a Halloween party organized by a wealthy Saudi prince in the city of Jeddah (Jeddah in Arabic), with the highest quality drink, drugs and sex with prostitutes.

One of the secret documents, dated 18/11/2009, reported: "Behind the facade of Wahhabi conservatism on the streets, the nightlife for the young elite of Jeddah is thriving and throbbing. The full range of worldly temptations and vices are available - alcohol, drugs, sex - but strictly behind closed doors. "
...
Off the list of heirs to the throne, the host is one of the thousands of princes who enjoy the millionaire life of the royalty to protect their mansions and succeed, with 24 hour security at the gate, and to escape the strict morality imposed on citizens in the streets.

Alcohol is strictly banned in all of Saudi Arabia, which punishes the possession of drugs with long jail sentences and public flogging.


In the meantime Indians can be treated as follows:
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indi ... 154236.cms
Falsely accused of killing spouse, doc jailed in Saudi

Falsely accused of killing spouse, doc jailed in Saudi - The Times of India

It was an ordeal that will haunt Dr Shalini Chawla for the rest of her life. Her husband died in his sleep of a heart attack in Saudi Arabia, where the couple worked. But she was told that he had converted to Islam and accused, without a shred of evidence, of poisoning him.

That was bad enough. But Shalini was then put behind bars with an infant in a foreign land and later kept confined to a home for months with hostile people around her and the fear of death hanging over her every living moment.

Read more: Falsely accused of killing spouse, doc jailed in Saudi - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indi ... z19JjhWwXB


KSA is a problem. What does the future hold?

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 27 Dec 2010 18:44

Pakistan - Saudi Nuclear connection
http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world ... index.html

During Mr Nawaz Sharif’s tenure as prime minister, Saudi Arabia appears to have begun funding Pakistan’s nuclear and missile programs. The North Korean missiles ("red missiles painted green") traded for Pakistani nuclear know-how in the late 1990s took place at a time when the Pakistani economy was in shambles. Saudi Arabia appears to have bailed Pakistan out of this financial crisis.

Following Pakistan's nuclear weapons tests in May 1999, (wrong date!) Saudi authorities denied the speculation about any possible cooperation between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia in the nuclear field. Saudi Arabia's second deputy prime minister, defense and aviation minister and inspector general, Prince Sultan Bin Abd al-Alziz, denied reports of Saudi attempts to acquire nuclear arms from Pakistan. Concerns about Saudi plans to buy nuclear weapons were raised after Prince Sultan toured Pakistan's secret nuclear facilities in May 1999. The prince toured the Kahuta uranium enrichment plant and an adjacent factory where the Ghauri missile is assembled with Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif and was briefed by A.Q. Khan, the father of Pakistan's atom bomb. The site is so secret that former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto said she was not allowed to go to there during her tenure in office.


http://www.nti.org/e_research/e3_40a.html
Khilewi contends that Saudi Arabia also provided financial support for the nuclear weapons programs of Pakistan and Iraq in the 1970s and 1980s, in the hopes that these countries could help protect Saudi Arabia after they had developed nuclear weapons of their own.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Pranav » 27 Dec 2010 19:27

Saudi Arabia of today, under King Abdullah, is different from Saudi Arabia of 1970's and 80's. They are no longer supporting the Talibs, as far as one can tell.

The main danger, IMHO, are the "charities" that fund organizations like the LeT. They seem to be very opaque, and they could be getting their money from all kinds of intelligence agencies.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Vikas » 27 Dec 2010 19:35

Generally KSA carries dirty and bad impression among most of the people that interact with (Mostly Non-Muslims).
Why does KSA carry so much of weight in Muslim affairs across the world.
They are after all just an entity in which Macca and Madina fall. Why should that entail them special rights in Muslim world ?

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby RajeshA » 27 Dec 2010 19:37

One needs to think, why the Saudis would prefer to support Pakistan over India. Our Muslim populations are more or less equal. In fact much of the funding the Pakistanis get, leaks over into groups, who are themselves allied with enemies of the Saudi monarchy.

What does Pakistan provide to Saudis, what India cannot provide? How can India provide the same better? What does India need to be able to provide the same better?

We should not accept the situation as it exists now of Saudi support to Pakis as written in stone. Because that makes the Saudis our enemies. Does this enmity need to be there? Is it permanent?

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby SSridhar » 27 Dec 2010 19:59

In the Aug. 14-20, 2009 issue of TFT, there was an article, "Al Faisal – A rebel in kingley Robes" which stated the following:
During his reign as King, Faisal formed a close alliance with Pakistan. In 1979, the city of Lyallpur was renamed ‘Faisalabad’ or ‘The City of Faisal.’ The Faisal Mosque in Islamabad, funded by Saudi money, was also named after him, along with the Shahrah-e-Faisal highway in Karachi and Shah Faisal Colony near the Karachi Airport. Moreover, a Pakistan Air Force base in Karachi was named the Faisal Base in his honour. Most of all, his presence at the historic Islamic Summit at Lahore in 1974, lent great support to the cause of the unity of the Islamic ummah. Most significantly, sources claim that it was King Faisal’s outreach to Pakistan that resulted in discussions about the latter country building an atomic bomb. There is strong evidence that the Saudis offered to underwrite Pakistan’s expenses in the building of the bomb. This relationship continued apace, but after Faisal’s demise, lost its anti-imperialist hue and encouraged the spread of Wahhabism throughout Pakistan. The Saudis’ underwriting of the bomb explains why the last call the then PM Nawaz Sharif made before testing the device in 1998 was to King Fahd, and not to President Bill Clinton of the US who had been urging Pakistan not to test.


After the 1998 nuclear test, Saudi Arabia supported Pakistan with deferred payments on oil supply for the next three years, which were finally written off generously. Even later, Pakistan was supported with a grant of USD 1 Billion worth of free hydrocarbon a year by Saudi Arabia. To add to this, the Saudis agreed once again on a deferred payment as the oil prices began to surge to unprecedented levels inearly circa 2008. The magnitude of this ‘help’ by Saudi Arabia can be gauged when one realizes that the annual oil bill of USD 6B which Saudi Arabia deferred was the same as the foreign remittances Pakistan receives annually.

Let us also remember that the Pakistani interests in joining the MEDO, and CENTO (originally Baghdad Pact) relied on the grouping of Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Pakistan. This upset the citadel of Islam, Saudi Arabia, which in 1955 denounced Pakistan’s action as a “stab in the heart of the Arab and Muslim States” since both Iraq and Iran were enduring rivals of Saudi Arabia. As for Egypt, its reason for disliking Pakistan was that it was siding with the US which was the main supporter of Israel. The relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) was not mended until the mid 1960s when the US-Pakistan relationship began to witness a downturn. In fact, the then President of Pakistan Maj. Gen. Iskander Mirza angrily accused his own Prime Minister Suhrawardy, who wanted to oppose the British stance on the Suez canal, as “irresponsible and irrational . . “. The Pakistani Prime Minister, Hussein Shahid Suhrawardy, while referring to the Arabs made the famous statement, “Zero plus zero is always zero”.

During Gen. Zia’s time, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia wielded enormous influence in setting up Islamization in all walks of life. Islamic laws were drafted using experts from the Kingdom. Madrasseh were setup all over Pakistan using generous funds from the Kingdom and propagating Wahhabism, the effects of which on Indian security have been enormous and tragic.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 27 Dec 2010 21:10

Living in India - an anglophone nation with a Westminster style democratic government I think many people tend to imagine the world to be much like us. Saudi Arabia neds to be seen like a kingdom. We hear stories of kings in olden days ruling like despots -"Off with his head" etc. but that is only a story for us. Not reality. However kings are a reality in KSA. Very ve-ry rich kings, rich enough to buy the best protection in the world.

These kings have everything that can be bought and are paying for their subjects (20 million) and foreign workers (8 million). Most of them do not give a damn about great statesmanship, international relations and such stuff. they are wealthy kings period and will do what suits them The expect slaves. Westerners are always slobbering after them. Most people are slobbering after them and offering to lick their behinds.

Under the circumstances the people who act most like slaves are treated with contempt but shown favors. Pakistan is one such nation. India has also done its best to lick Saudi backside - but India as a kafir country is second class. The US is also second class but ingratiates itself sufficiently with the Saudis. Imagine how Israel must feel when they think that Saudis got F-15s and AWACS to match.

India is a beggar nation that pays fro oil, shuts its friggin gob when the pompous OIC fart their Islamic farts and does a lungi dance about 20 billion remittance from Indian slaves in KSA.

What choice do we have? Where do we move from being slobbering slaving nobody?

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Vikas » 27 Dec 2010 21:35

One choice is to wait out till the King and all its Princes run out of Oil.
After that as they say, no one will even bother to spit at them. But then that not being a practical option, We need to cultivate relationship with key players in the Palace.
We don't have to compete with Bakistan to be showered with morning after money once the Sheikh has shafted the Paki whore.

In fact I will go ahead and ask,"Is KSA a security threat to India " ?
How are they creating imbalance in the security environment in and around India. Is there anything India specific that KSA is doing ?
What is that we want from KSA ?

As far ass licking, remember KSA with all its money could not do anything when cartoons of Mo were published across the world. I think this Islamic influence and money works upto a certain point.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Singha » 27 Dec 2010 21:53

most of the R2I terrorists our police net seem to have been 'turned' and 'indocrinated' in the dormitories and camps of blue collar indian muslim workers in KSA. Paki officials seem to have a deal going to gain free access to the indian workers there and id the more promising ones for taleem and further education in pakistan before being sent back to India to become part of the logistical network that helps the hitmen jhadis here.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby RajeshA » 27 Dec 2010 22:00

shiv wrote:What choice do we have? Where do we move from being slobbering slaving nobody?


1) If Sauds are so damn dripping fracking rich, then they must be having many many enemies. Being monarchs, also means, that they are paranoid about their security and unsure about their legitimacy. There are many parties, who can claim just as much legitimacy to be on the throne as the Sauds.

2) The Sauds hate the guts of the Iranians, due to sectarian and historical differences but also because the Iranians offer a complete Islamic system as an alternative, and wouldn't love anything more than seeing the Iranians burn in hell.

3) The fact that the Pakistani regime, at least the ISI, has moved so close to Al Qaeda, is in fact something about which the Sauds must be very worried. If they embed the Pakistanis in their security framework, there is always a chance that an overly pious TSPA TFTA could get other ideas.

4) The Sauds cannot support Pakistan on their own. It is far too costly and far too uncertain. With Pakistani state entering a stage of terminal failure of state viz-a-viz its citizens, if not TSPA as yet, it is questionable if Pakistan can provide consistent support.

5) As the Pakistani Army's officer cadre moves from Muslim Chauvinism as its primary tenet to Islamism, and Pan-Islamism, the worth and trustworthiness of its army becomes questionable, as the chickens start to come home, to the Sauds, to roost.

6) China is building a coalition of anti-American Muslim nations, which includes nations which still consider themselves to be in a formal alliance with America, mainly Turkey and Pakistan, but it also includes other Muslim nations like Iran. We saw how this axis is coming together and it includes both Iran and Pakistan. Can the Sauds really trust Pakistan, if it considers itself ever more aligned with the Chinese and a Chinese-led coalition against America?

7) Pakistan's own growing problems with America also means that the American-Pakistani partnership to boost the Sauds would not be hitch-free.

There is major scope for realignment of forces around the Indian Ocean Rim region. What is missing for India are the required credentials as a Muslim nation! Pity considering that India has 161 million Muslims, and no faida from it!

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby abhischekcc » 27 Dec 2010 22:48

I suggest that a good book to understand the Saudi political culture is 'The Bin Ladens' by Steve Coll. Although the book is about the rise of Bin Laden family from extreme poverty in Hadre maut region (Valley of Death) in Yemen, it gives a good account of life in the Saudi court as it traces the travails of OBL's father and later, his elder brother as they maneuvered to gain access to and friendship of the royal family.

It shows how precarious the position of the royal family really is. They use their oil wealth to pay of and balance various forces in the region. They are also very sensitive to criticism from the religious quarters, who are critical of the very visible (and also invisible) consumption and lechery of the royal family. This resonates with the population. Hence, the royal family tries to placate the mullahs with money and a free hand to run many aspects of foreign policy (export of fundamentalism wahhabism and of terror) - a situation that is similar to pakistan. In both countries, the central government lacks true legitimacy.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ashokpachori » 27 Dec 2010 23:09

shiv wrote:
There are about 1.8 million Indians in KSA. India's average earnings from foreign remittances from the Gulf states is about USD 30 billlion - which is 30% of the total remittance from abroad.


Foreign remittances from Indian diaspora is apx 52 billion overall.

So 30% cant be right figure.....

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ashokpachori » 27 Dec 2010 23:39

What choice do we have? Where do we move from being slobbering slaving nobody?



India accepts Saudi dictat, which is, that India should always comply with saudis and send a Muslim ambassador to it.

Saudi disclaimer: This does not apply to US-UK-Russia-China (who send non muslim ambassador of thier own).

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby RajeshA » 27 Dec 2010 23:58

ashokpachori wrote:India accepts Saudi dictat, which is, that India should always comply with saudis and send a Muslim ambassador to it.

Saudi disclaimer: This does not apply to US-UK-Russia-China (who send non muslim ambassador of thier own).

What is the use of an ambassador? To develop the relations between two countries. It helps to let the others feel comfortable with one's own emissary.

Of course, it can be the case, that GoI every now and then may choose a jackass as an Ambassador, who may not look at the world from the perspective of India's national interests, but in principle, I think it is the correct decision to choose a Muslim as our representative to Saudi Arabia. We should of course give our own Indian Muslims a bit more spine to stand up to the West Asian Muslims.

There needs to be instances, where we can consider Indian Muslims as assets for India also.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ashokpachori » 28 Dec 2010 00:31

RajeshA wrote:
ashokpachori wrote:India accepts Saudi dictat, which is, that India should always comply with saudis and send a Muslim ambassador to it.

Saudi disclaimer: This does not apply to US-UK-Russia-China (who send non muslim ambassador of thier own).

What is the use of an ambassador? To develop the relations between two countries. It helps to let the others feel comfortable with one's own emissary.

Of course, it can be the case, that GoI every now and then may choose a jackass as an Ambassador, who may not look at the world from the perspective of India's national interests, but in principle, I think it is the correct decision to choose a Muslim as our representative to Saudi Arabia. We should of course give our own Indian Muslims a bit more spine to stand up to the West Asian Muslims.

There needs to be instances, where we can consider Indian Muslims as assets for India also.


You probably did not get my message...

By such a dictat, they are rediculing India, putting a geneva convention on diplomats protocol at stake. For other countries such as P-5 there is no such commandment/mandate.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby RajeshA » 28 Dec 2010 02:06

ashokpachori wrote:By such a dictat, they are rediculing India, putting a geneva convention on diplomats protocol at stake. For other countries such as P-5 there is no such commandment/mandate.

All we know, is that India sends Muslim Ambassadors to Saudi Arabia. Can one say with confidence that it is at the instance of Saudi Arabia, or is it because India sees it in our interest?

Even if both cases are true, as long as Indian interest is considered, it is legitimate to send Muslim Ambassadors to Saudi Arabia.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ashokpachori » 28 Dec 2010 02:37

RajeshA wrote:
ashokpachori wrote:By such a dictat, they are rediculing India, putting a geneva convention on diplomats protocol at stake. For other countries such as P-5 there is no such commandment/mandate.

All we know, is that India sends Muslim Ambassadors to Saudi Arabia. Can one say with confidence that it is at the instance of Saudi Arabia, or is it because India sees it in our interest?

Even if both cases are true, as long as Indian interest is considered, it is legitimate to send Muslim Ambassadors to Saudi Arabia.



Its a mandate!
And India is complying meekly...
Its shamful, because P-5 members are free from these strings.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ashokpachori » 28 Dec 2010 02:59

Saudi Arabia insists that India sends only a Muslim ambassador

http://www.mid-day.com/entertainment/20 ... ter-03.htm

http://www.haindavakeralam.com/hkpage.a ... 440&SKIN=B
Its a well known fact Rajesh.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Sudip » 28 Dec 2010 03:19

shiv wrote:India is a beggar nation that pays fro oil, shuts its friggin gob when the pompous OIC fart their Islamic farts and does a lungi dance about 20 billion remittance from Indian slaves in KSA.

What choice do we have? Where do we move from being slobbering slaving nobody?


I think the relationship should be seen as a mutual one. For eg, if there is a plumber in my locality, i might ridicule what a lousy profession he does, but once the shit gets stuck in my toilet, he is my saviour. (Not that I am ridiculing plumbers, I often mend my stuck toilets myself :D) However, my point is if india is worth 20 billion, then maybe we can also show them that v can control the tap of cheap workers too. Then we will see how do they build their burj dubai and what not.

Here is an example I feel of preferential treatment against saudis that I took from the china episode. Suddenly stop recognising saudi worker visas at the airport for some random reason and start encouraging visas for other countries like iran by signing some treaty. If this is done, the other party can be straightened up too. Without the expatriate workers, these illeterate nations are nothing. They'll collapse like a pack of cards.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby RajeshA » 28 Dec 2010 03:31

ashokpachori wrote:Saudi Arabia insists that India sends only a Muslim ambassador

http://www.mid-day.com/entertainment/20 ... ter-03.htm

http://www.haindavakeralam.com/hkpage.a ... 440&SKIN=B
Its a well known fact Rajesh.


Okay, if Bandyopadhyay Arindam says it, then it must be true! :roll:

If what you say is true, India should at least insist that India be a member of OIC, if they expect a Muslim ambassador from India.

Anyway, India is not P5, so why cry!

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby akashganga » 28 Dec 2010 04:11

My 2 cents.

Saudi Arabia is essentially owner of islam as the religion originated there in the same way hinduism originated in India. The number one priority of Saudis is preservation and growth of their religion islam using whatever tools they can in every part of the world. That is why they fund pakistan against mostly Hindu India. Most of the terrorists who carried out 9/11 twin tower attacks in the USA were saudis. That is why 97% of expats in Saudi Arabia are muslims. Saudis only objective in India is to help muslims living there and grow them. This is the truth. The politically correct politicians and journalists will not admit it.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ShauryaT » 28 Dec 2010 04:27

shiv wrote:What choice do we have? Where do we move from being slobbering slaving nobody?
We need to cultivate Iran. My contemplations on this topic have led me to this conclusion.

We need to look beyond the Islamic rooted issues and the discard the western lens of looking at Iran. Iran is a nation, that can be exploited for Indian needs and Iran is a place along with Afghanistan, where the Geo-political influence of the Indian nation ought to play its dominant role.

Iran is a Shia nation, hence opposed to TSP, a sunni dominant nation, a non Arab nation, hence opposed to KSA. Iran holds the third largest hydro carbon reserves. Serves as a vital link to Afghanistan and CA for India. Desires the protection of a larger nation, against its mortal enemies in the Arab and Sunni lands. What KSA is to USA, Iran can be to India. Just like PRC understands that a "wild buffalo cannot be swatted like a fly" (Deng Xiaoping's words, something like that), KSA will understand, when Iran has a dependable "ally".

If done carefully, it will tame Iran's wilder elements, which will be welcomed by the US/western nations. However, cannot even begin with the 2% or so measly budget for the defense of India. It is a geo-political game and India should be willing to play it.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Sudip » 28 Dec 2010 04:37

ShauryaT wrote:We need to cultivate Iran.


The first issue that goes against this desire is india's dilemma about which side to choose for:- US-Israel or Iran. I believe one middle way to this can be by becoming an active peace negotiator/middleman between Israel and Iran. (Negotiations between israel and palestine have worked earlier too). India's neutrality (NAM and all that) is well known and both sides would trust india to play the peacemaker. I also feel india's cultural similarity with iran and political similarity with israel-US makes us the best candidate for this job. Ending the enemity between iran and israel-US can only be in india's favour. It would be the last nail on the coffin of the paki-ksa axis.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shyamd » 28 Dec 2010 05:42

ShauryaT wrote:Iran is a Shia nation, hence opposed to TSP, a sunni dominant nation, a non Arab nation, hence opposed to KSA. Iran holds the third largest hydro carbon reserves. Serves as a vital link to Afghanistan and CA for India. Desires the protection of a larger nation, against its mortal enemies in the Arab and Sunni lands. What KSA is to USA, Iran can be to India. Just like PRC understands that a "wild buffalo cannot be swatted like a fly" (Deng Xiaoping's words, something like that), KSA will understand, when Iran has a dependable "ally".

If done carefully, it will tame Iran's wilder elements, which will be welcomed by the US/western nations. However, cannot even begin with the 2% or so measly budget for the defense of India. It is a geo-political game and India should be willing to play it.

Obama asked MMS to back sanctions against Iran, MMS frankly told him any more pushing on Iran will significantly affect Indo US bilateral ties.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Y. Kanan » 28 Dec 2010 05:43

Agreed but this will probably not be possible as long as the radical Islamists control Iran. If the reformers (or at least relative moderates like the former Khatami regime) can regain power in Iran, India could once again cultivate stronger ties with Iran and act as a broker to help repair the long-damaged US & Isreali relations with Tehran.

But I don't see this happening anytime soon. The islamists control Iran with an iron fist and show no signs of losing their grip. As long as these loons are in power it will be difficult for India to cultivate Iran as an ally.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shyamd » 28 Dec 2010 05:50

Each KSA administration/King is different. There isn't always continuation of policy. King A thinks Zardari is not the right person there for example. KSA has bought out TSP and are using them as mercenaries for protection of themselves. TSP are happy to oblige because Army can maintain power, it receives money (GOOD MONEY even if things go wrong!), allowed to continue targetting Yindustan.

Its a pure business transaction.

Regarding funding of Wahabi ideology - It was part of state ideology at one point. Not any more. KSA today is very different from the past. Read my posts in the West Asia thread on what King A is trying to do to change the entire system. He is doing it slowly, we should work to support King A. The next King may reverse all the good work that has gone in so far.

Problem with KSA (and perhaps GCC at large) is that they are scared to take a heavy handed response against its local subjects. Thats the way it has always been, unless you piss off the rulers or do something that is anti establishment. So regarding funding, yes they know who some of them are, sometimes they don't know what is going on, sometimes its a royal or someone in a powerful family who have connections and authorities are usually scared to take action unless its ordered right from the top. They have a lot of tribal/family politics going on there.

---------------
Just as an aside, you don't think the local Saudis hate the Muttawa(religious police) too? They hate them and they have a lot of power, so, King A is clamping down on their activities slowly so as not to piss too many people off there.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby SSridhar » 28 Dec 2010 06:06

akashganga wrote:Saudi Arabia is essentially owner of islam as the religion originated there in the same way hinduism originated in India.

Technically, it was the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan who was the real Custodian of the Two Holy Places.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 28 Dec 2010 06:38

SSridhar wrote:
akashganga wrote:Saudi Arabia is essentially owner of islam as the religion originated there in the same way hinduism originated in India.

Technically, it was the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan who was the real Custodian of the Two Holy Places.


Yes - in fact I was going to dispute that statement by Akashganga - but you have been more precise. Saudis do not own Islam. However the kings of Saudi have everything to gain by claiming to own Islam. They would have been nobodies had their control over Makkah not been aided by the Brits and later the Amirkhans. The centers of Islam lay in Iraq too and the Caliph sat in Turkey.

The problem is that Islam is used by Muslims like a panty to cover and protect stuff that can range from innocent to vulgar. Even if a despot has power and he does dirty stuff in the name of Islam most Muslims just shut up and swallow it because the alternative is to be called an enemy of Islam and be killed. This is where the Saudis are. A lot of Muslims in the world don't necessarily agree with the Saudis but they can do fug all about it. So they will curse the Saudis in private.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 28 Dec 2010 06:40

abhischekcc wrote:I suggest that a good book to understand the Saudi political culture is 'The Bin Ladens' by Steve Coll.
<snip>
Hence, the royal family tries to placate the mullahs with money and a free hand to run many aspects of foreign policy (export of fundamentalism wahhabism and of terror) - a situation that is similar to pakistan. In both countries, the central government lacks true legitimacy.



The similarity to Pakistan is amazing actually - except that there are many more Pakis I will certainly try and get hold of that book.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby somnath » 28 Dec 2010 07:50

It's oil based GDP is 600 billion USD. It is the home of Wahhabism which is the official state religion and that state religion is being exported using Saudi funds to other countries. 97% of expatriates are Muslims

25% of Indian oil imports are from KSA

There are about 1.8 million Indians in KSA. India's average earnings from foreign remittances from the Gulf states is about USD 30 billlion - which is 30% of the total remittance from abroad.


The numbers are all pretty much wrong...Bloomberg tells me that Saudi Arabia' GDP is about 369 billion...Oil imports from Saudi Arabia is 18% of total oil imports (though thats expected to rise)..Total remittance this year is about 55 billion (not 100 billion as purported above) - Saudi will probably be a fraction of the total, no more than 10-15% (a lot of the remittances are from AsiaPac an North America now)...

The really, the issue is whether KSA is a congenital adversary for India...ACtually like any other country, the ruling elite is only interested in self preservation...They fear Iran, Islamic radicalism and the Saudi populace - in that order (It used to b Iraz as well earlier in Saddam's time)...That is precisely why they have had a cosy arrangement with Israel for so many years...That is why they preserve the veneer of wahabi islamism, to keep the conservatives on their side..and that i why they have been generous to Pakistan - to give them military (and nuclear) cover...

There is nothing terribly "islamic" about the behaviour of most Saudis (at least the men :) )...The challenge befor India would be to work the Saudi royal family to our advantage...

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 28 Dec 2010 09:00

somnath wrote:That is precisely why they have had a cosy arrangement with Israel for so many years...That is why they preserve the veneer of wahabi islamism, to keep the conservatives on their side..and that i why they have been generous to Pakistan - to give them military (and nuclear) cover...

That's one heck of an apology for KSA. It's really odd that this "veneer" of wahhabism kills so many in India.

What surprises me is the amount of sympathy and goodwill that KSA has on this board - this is the same board where people regularly clump KSA as one of Pakistan's 3.5 and howl that Mecca should be nuked if Pakistan nukes us.

Interesting, if nothing else.

The question that comes to my mind is if the religious attitudes of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan and a few other states is accepted as being within the norms of international behavior then killing on religious grounds is perfectly acceptable. Once again it is the slaves of the world - Indians who are constantly looking to please every extremist in the world.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby somnath » 28 Dec 2010 09:05

shiv wrote:That's one heck of an apology for KSA. It's really odd that this "veneer" of wahhabism kills so many in India.

What surprises me is the amount of sympathy and goodwill that KSA has on this board -


There is no "apology", or goodwill for KSA (at least from my side)...However higher state craft is not practised with black-and-white images of "bad wahabbi muslims, congenital friends of Pak" logic. Motivations, pressure points, incentives, disincentives need to be identified and worked upon...

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 28 Dec 2010 09:10

somnath wrote:There is no "apology", or goodwill for KSA (at least from my side)...However higher state craft is not practised with black-and-white images of "bad wahabbi muslims, congenital friends of Pak" logic. Motivations, pressure points, incentives, disincentives need to be identified and worked upon...



Sir - I believe that expressions like "Higher statecraft" have been imposed on Indian thoughts as a means of condoling bestial behavior by higher statesmen who play global games.To use my own language - everyone in the world is a bhench*d - only we Indians are required to exercise "higher statecraft". I believe that we are jackasses for being that way.

The international behavioral norms set by the Britain of yore, the USA , KSA. Pakistan and China make me laugh at the poor sods who have been made to believe that there is some "higher statecraft" that exists outside of the behavior of the most influential states of the world. No such thing exists. Grabbing, greed and supreme self interest is the only statecraft that matters. Higher statecraft is for losers.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby somnath » 28 Dec 2010 09:19

shiv wrote:Grabbing, greed and supreme self interest is the only statecraft that matters.


Largely true doctor - that precisely is higher statecraft...But tell me, how houd India deal with KSA? With hostility, derision and lack of engagement? So that it embraces Pakistan ever more tightly and opens up a more liberal funding line to it? Or should we engage with it, show it the benefit-crumbs of Indian engagement, thereby making it less enthusiastic to fund the next Pak misdemeanour?

Take an example..about 18% of our oil imports are from KS, and another 16% is from Iran...shifting even 5% of our basket to KSA would translate to tens of billions of dollars...Is that an incentive that we can use to drive KSA's behaviour? In fact something similar is happening as we speak..

A lot of people still just dont understand that India today is not the India of the '80s and '70s (when quite frankly, we were a bit of a loser)...Our carrots an implied sticks (for sophisticated diplomacy, the sticks are always implied) carry a lot more weight...

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby ShauryaT » 28 Dec 2010 09:46

shyamd wrote:Obama asked MMS to back sanctions against Iran, MMS frankly told him any more pushing on Iran will significantly affect Indo US bilateral ties.
It will take a lot more than that to make Iran an "ally". While we were supporting the IAEA sanctions and keeping half foot in and half out on other sanction areas, it was China that gained the largest foot hold in the Persian land. China abstained from any sanctions on Iran and abstained from most IAEA votes too.

It is China that has become the defacto supplier for arms for the Iranians and China that has gained the largest pie on Iran's hydro carbon reserves.

This game is not going to be won in a fair and square manner.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby KLNMurthy » 28 Dec 2010 10:14

shiv wrote:
somnath wrote:There is no "apology", or goodwill for KSA (at least from my side)...However higher state craft is not practised with black-and-white images of "bad wahabbi muslims, congenital friends of Pak" logic. Motivations, pressure points, incentives, disincentives need to be identified and worked upon...



Sir - I believe that expressions like "Higher statecraft" have been imposed on Indian thoughts as a means of condoling bestial behavior by higher statesmen who play global games.To use my own language - everyone in the world is a bhench*d - only we Indians are required to exercise "higher statecraft". I believe that we are jackasses for being that way.

The international behavioral norms set by the Britain of yore, the USA , KSA. Pakistan and China make me laugh at the poor sods who have been made to believe that there is some "higher statecraft" that exists outside of the behavior of the most influential states of the world. No such thing exists. Grabbing, greed and supreme self interest is the only statecraft that matters. Higher statecraft is for losers.


This may be getting OT, but I don't think it is quite so absolute as all that. While being naive and playing by the rules when no one else is a losing proposition, there is significant value in steadfastly returning good for good, loyalty for loyalty, and not provoking hostilities. It will be useful in gaining allies, provided this "goodness" is combined with consistently retaliating when attacked. Standard game-theoretic funda of "retaliator" strategy.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby shiv » 28 Dec 2010 10:53

KLNMurthy wrote: provided this "goodness" is combined with consistently retaliating when attacked. Standard game-theoretic funda of "retaliator" strategy.



Well there are two strategies
One is tit for tat:
1) I slap you
2) You slap me back
3) I slap you
4) You slap me back

The other is
1) I slap you
2) You do nothing
3) I slap you
4) You do nothing

India is following the later route as far as KSA is concerned as far as I can tell. They can pretty much do anything (oil prices, help to Pakistan, religious rules, religion of Ambassador) And we sit and swallow it.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby akashganga » 28 Dec 2010 11:07

To understand what Saudis are up to and what their intentions are towards India and other Kafir countries you need fundamental understanding of islam itself. You should read politically incorrect works of VS Naipaul,or Late Anwar Sheikh. Also refer faithfreedom.org. The whole problem is in islam itself. Those whom you are claiming misusing this religion are actually following tenets of this religion. My 2 cents.


Yes - in fact I was going to dispute that statement by Akashganga - but you have been more precise. Saudis do not own Islam. However the kings of Saudi have everything to gain by claiming to own Islam. They would have been nobodies had their control over Makkah not been aided by the Brits and later the Amirkhans. The centers of Islam lay in Iraq too and the Caliph sat in Turkey.

The problem is that Islam is used by Muslims like a panty to cover and protect stuff that can range from innocent to vulgar. Even if a despot has power and he does dirty stuff in the name of Islam most Muslims just shut up and swallow it because the alternative is to be called an enemy of Islam and be killed. This is where the Saudis are. A lot of Muslims in the world don't necessarily agree with the Saudis but they can do fug all about it. So they will curse the Saudis in private.
Last edited by SSridhar on 28 Dec 2010 12:29, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: please use Quote Tag whenever you refer to an earlier post

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby Samudragupta » 28 Dec 2010 11:10

The fundamental mistake i think in the line of our thinking is that we can play the game of balancing in the same way as the Americans and the British have played, the Chinese have no such ideas, hence they are successful in Iran and down the lane going to be successful in the Arabian peninsula based on the American foolishness(?). We cannot play the balancing game btwn Iran/Arabs, simply because we still don't have the capability(the term being not only economic and military) required to play the game.
It is very naive to think for us that befriending Iran will Alienate Israel, Both Israel and Iranians are far from our immidiate strategic calculus and they are clearly not capable of helping our immidiate cause,
1. Neutralizing the devoloping Caliphate in the Western Border.
2. Neutralize the Chinese presence in the IOR.

What is so important with KSA? they may not even survive as a state in the next 40 years, if the evolving second axis of the Caliphate devolops in Yemen/Somalia, the ruling Sauds are not even Quaraish. Its clear the ruling king is implementing his own 'White Revolution' in KSA backed up by the Americans with required military and political might, but its clear the system of governance is ineffective to deal with the challenge that will be faced by the administration in making the change and thats why probably this king learning from the Shah is moving slowly. The strategic interest of the Sauds have clearly moved from an expansion of ideology to consolidation of the family and administration in the face of ruthless Iranian expansion and challenges from the Caliphate, the condition is not very different from pre revolution Iran.

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Re: Saudi Arabia and its impact on Indian security

Postby KLNMurthy » 28 Dec 2010 11:47

shiv wrote:
KLNMurthy wrote: provided this "goodness" is combined with consistently retaliating when attacked. Standard game-theoretic funda of "retaliator" strategy.



Well there are two strategies
One is tit for tat:
1) I slap you
2) You slap me back
3) I slap you
4) You slap me back

The other is
1) I slap you
2) You do nothing
3) I slap you
4) You do nothing

India is following the later route as far as KSA is concerned as far as I can tell. They can pretty much do anything (oil prices, help to Pakistan, religious rules, religion of Ambassador) And we sit and swallow it.

Agreed that India is not following 'tit-for-tat' policy. I just wanted to point out that 'playing nice' is not necessarily a loser strategy as long it is combined with tit-for-tat.


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