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West Asia News and Discussions

The Strategic Issues & International Relations Forum is a venue to discuss issues pertaining to India's security environment, her strategic outlook on global affairs and as well as the effect of international relations in the Indian Subcontinent. We request members to kindly stay within the mandate of this forum and keep their exchanges of views, on a civilised level, however vehemently any disagreement may be felt. All feedback regarding forum usage may be sent to the moderators using the Feedback Form or by clicking the Report Post Icon in any objectionable post for proper action. Please note that the views expressed by the Members and Moderators on these discussion boards are that of the individuals only and do not reflect the official policy or view of the Bharat-Rakshak.com Website. Copyright Violation is strictly prohibited and may result in revocation of your posting rights - please read the FAQ for full details. Users must also abide by the Forum Guidelines at all times.
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 29 Oct 2017 13:46


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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Virupaksha » 29 Oct 2017 18:16

saar ji, expect a conservative backlash. Moving into 21st century will unravel the religious agreement on which house of saud is built on. This element is under control through the religious bakshish of oil flows.

We need to watch for moves where there is a coup on mosque imams and their underlings - the rumblings will be first from their university. His publicised views on Trump are well interesting.

The absence of such is also a hint - basically MBS as a gas bag taqqiya.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 29 Oct 2017 19:01

^^Backlash is anticipated in the article (in the four certainties). However, my bet is that MBS will overcome that. By force if necessary. It probably won't. Not much anyway. Backlash is more likely from conservative royals, but a lot depends on how he nuances the whole thing. Certainly he remembers what happened to King Faisal, and is not likely to repeat that mistake. I sense MBS is a man with a mission, sees himself in the mould of the bolder Ibn Saud. Taqqiya works inside as well as it does for outsiders.

Don't get me wrong, I am not saying the man is a saint heading on the path towards liberal democracy. But he is in my view well positioned to steer Saudi Arabia from the abyss that it is heading towards. The analysis is purely from the point of view of Saudi Arabia, what he is doing there.

There is nothing in the article that shows perspective for or of India or any other outside factor. That's an entirely different matter.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Virupaksha » 29 Oct 2017 19:24

If I may, what is the abyss which Saudi is heading towards? I know that the al Saud's family way of buying off peace "might" be in trouble. But abyss is far off.

The balance of power equations of controlling the population will switch from using money from oil to using imams, i.e. I expect the power of conservatives to increase. Without it, the al Saud family cannot continue its control in the way it has been doing for the past few decades.

These are the ramblings of the family who could get away with making islamic rules only for the general public, but not for others.

Guess who owns your uber data?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 29 Oct 2017 19:44

(a) Low oil prices & no diversification, at least not without socio-economic change.
(b) Restive population. The youth, and there are many, are fed up with the local restrictions according to more than one report and quotes. They may not be asking for a liberal scenario, but wish for at least a Dubai situation.
(c) Given the above two, no real income sources to meet the welfare state criteria - so pressure on the princes, much more than now.
(d) hostility or indifference from bigger powers because everyone knows where the radicalism is coming from.

In the above environment, where will the Royal family go? There will be the conservatives, and the less conservative. The Crown Prince is in the latter group. There are no liberals in the kingdom. I'm betting he has the skills and support necessary to carry through this agenda he has outlined. I could be wrong, but obviously I don't think I am.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby deejay » 29 Oct 2017 20:01

JE Menon wrote:https://swarajyamag.com/world/saudi-crown-prince-promises-to-drag-his-nation-into-21st-century-and-he-may-succeed

What might be next for Saudi Arabia


Good article there JEM. Perhaps, you could have been a little harsher on The MBS.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 29 Oct 2017 20:05

Thanks deejay.

This is strictly about Saudi, from their perspective (as much as I could put myself in their heads given info, etc)...of course the final call is mine, i.e., that MBS will succeed. As I said, this is not about whether he is a good guy or bad actor, what it means for India, etc... it is only about Saudi.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Mukesh.Kumar » 05 Nov 2017 01:47

Houthis launch missile at Riyad. Shot down.

BBC

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Mukesh.Kumar » 05 Nov 2017 02:03

Mukesh.Kumar wrote:Houthis launch missile at Riyad. Shot down.

BBC


More coverage from the SUN. Apparently 4 interceptors fired at missile targeting the King Abdullah Airport. The wreckage seemed to have hit a highway outside the city.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pravula » 05 Nov 2017 07:06

Saudi Arabia Arrests 11 Princes, Including Billionaire Alwaleed bin Talal

The king had decreed the creation of a powerful new anti-corruption committee, headed by the crown prince, only hours before the committee ordered the arrests.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby ramana » 05 Nov 2017 09:57

And Kushner had visited Riyadh.
Some rumors about Paddock.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Karthik S » 05 Nov 2017 10:21

Will there going to be Aurangzeb-Dara Shikoh kind of events now?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Gyan » 05 Nov 2017 14:39

pravula wrote:Saudi Arabia Arrests 11 Princes, Including Billionaire Alwaleed bin Talal

The king had decreed the creation of a powerful new anti-corruption committee, headed by the crown prince, only hours before the committee ordered the arrests.


Saudi = Turkey = China

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 05 Nov 2017 17:46

Missile attack on a Saudi airfield by Yemeni rebels?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby UlanBatori » 05 Nov 2017 19:41

AOA! Is this the BoE (beginning oph end) or EoB I wonder. Why does senior in charge of National Guard suddenly become persona non grata? Tried a coup himself, or refused orders to arrest prominent beebals?

11 princes and dozens of former ministers were detained in a new anti-corruption probe headed by the kingdom's powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who was named to oversee the new committee... looking into devastating and deadly floods that overwhelmed parts of the city of Jiddah in 2009 and is investigating the Saudi government's response to the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus that has killed several hundred people in the past few years. Meanwhile, the kingdom's top council of clerics issued a statement saying it is an Islamic duty to fight corruption— essentially giving religious backing to the high-level arrests being reported.
The government said the anti-corruption committee has the right to issue arrest warrants, impose travel restrictions and freeze bank accounts. It can also trace funds, prevent the transfer of funds or the liquidation of assets and take other precautionary measures until cases are referred to the judiciary.
The royal order said the committee was established "due to the propensity of some people for abuse, putting their personal interest above public interest, and stealing public funds (and not giving enough baksheesh 2 MbS?)."

removing Prince Miteb bin Abdullah as head of the National Guard. He was replaced by Prince Khalid bin Ayyaf al-Muqrin, who had held a senior post with the guard. Prince Miteb's father was the late King Abdullah, who also had led the National Guard and had transformed it into a powerful and prestigious force tasked with protecting the ruling Al Saud family, as well as important holy sites in Mecca and Medina, and oil and gas sites. .. once considered a contender for the throne. ouster as head of the National Guard sidelines one of the most formidable rivals to the current crown prince, who has amassed enormous power in less than three years since his father, King Salman, ascended to the throne. comes just three months after Prince Mohammed bin Nayef was ousted from the line of succession and from his post as interior minister, overseeing internal security. two princes now sidelined, control of the kingdom's security apparatus is now largely centralized under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is also defense minister.The monarch also replaced Minister of Economy and Planning Adel Fakeih with his deputy, Mohammad al-Tuwaijri. Admiral Abdullah Al-Sultan was also sacked as commander of Saudi Naval (mostly Houthi-submerged) Forces and replaced by Admiral Fahd bin Abdullah Al-Ghifaili.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 05 Nov 2017 21:13

List of arrested

https://mobile.twitter.com/rulajebreal/ ... 14/photo/1

Includes owner of bin ladin group could be a elder bro of obl

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Virupaksha » 05 Nov 2017 21:18

the kingdom's top council of clerics issued a statement saying it is an Islamic duty to fight corruption— essentially giving religious backing to the high-level arrests being reported.

Shylocks have given the loan, now waiting for Salman to pay back the pound of flesh - expecting some rollbacks in language.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 05 Nov 2017 21:21

List is headed by the flamboyant al waleed bin talal who
Is chummy with western elite and stakes in many key
Cos . He is guarded and served by a retinue of hand picked beautiful women. Search for pics of him

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Karthik S » 05 Nov 2017 21:23

Singha wrote:List is headed by the flamboyant al waleed bin talal who
Is chummy with western elite and stakes in many key
Cos . He is guarded and served by a retinue of hand picked beautiful women. Search for pics of him


Isn't he the one owning his own 747 with gold plated interiors?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 05 Nov 2017 21:38

Biggest stakeholder in citygroup so well plugged into
Usa deep state biraderi

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Karthik S » 05 Nov 2017 21:46

These guys are so rich that they can have their own little air force, navy and army. Wonder how things are still so peaceful in KSA after all this purging that's being called as arrests.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 05 Nov 2017 22:20

JE Menon wrote:https://swarajyamag.com/world/saudi-crown-prince-promises-to-drag-his-nation-into-21st-century-and-he-may-succeed

What might be next for Saudi Arabia


"Seen in this context, the statement of Crown Prince Mohammed is an historic departure from the past in general, and the recent past in particular. Put simply, his comments boil down to this: (a) Saudi Arabia is going to change, and change dramatically from the kingdom we have known it to be for the last 30 years, at least; (b) the extremism that is in the kingdom, and emanating from it, will be “destroyed now and immediately” – in short, no time will be wasted, and (c) the emphasis is going be on economic growth and socio-economic transformation on convergent tracks."

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby kit » 05 Nov 2017 22:41

Karthik S wrote:
Singha wrote:List is headed by the flamboyant al waleed bin talal who
Is chummy with western elite and stakes in many key
Cos . He is guarded and served by a retinue of hand picked beautiful women. Search for pics of him


Isn't he the one owning his own 747 with gold plated interiors?


Talal going under or " under pressure' means the king aims to reduce American influence .. just going the way of Turkey . Both have had " enough " of American Pie :mrgreen:

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby chanakyaa » 05 Nov 2017 23:20

Singha wrote:Biggest stakeholder in citygroup so well plugged into
Usa deep state biraderi

All those Wall-e-Street types keep Al-Weed-Talal so close that when sh!t hits the fan (i.e. bank losses, capital evaporating etc.) they call Al-Weed-Talal so he can put his capital in as a lender of last resort. Then he gets 10 mins of fame on See-En-BC/Bl00mberg etc. The as$$-h0le thinks that he is a Arabian why-et guy and great investor of Arabia. In spite of all the cash he has infused in the khan's system (before and after the crisis) he has no real power to call shots. I wouldn't say he is close to the deep-e-state. He has been given the impression that he is close enough. He gets a phone call, giving him an "impression" that he is the only one who can save the system, but it is ploy.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Shanmukh » 06 Nov 2017 02:04

Plane transporting eight Saudi officials including Prince Mansour Bin Muqrin, reportedly crashed near Abha

https://twitter.com/IsraelHatzolah/stat ... 7886689280

JEM saar,
You were dead right about the coming turbulence. What does this portend? Whose side was this character on?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby UlanBatori » 06 Nov 2017 07:11

Shanmukh wrote:Whose side was this character on?

More to the point: was the mijjile fired by the Houthis, the King's men or the now-rebels?
Prelim indications are that they were still the King's men, so its down to Houthis or rebels.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby UlanBatori » 06 Nov 2017 07:26

Apparently went sightseeing at Yemen border and were seen by the Houthis. - or that's the party line (added later) :mrgreen:
Last edited by UlanBatori on 06 Nov 2017 18:46, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 06 Nov 2017 08:01

Go MBS Go! AOA indeed.With "Mad Bull Salmaan" wielding his sword in true Arab bloodletting fashion,at his chief family rivals,the foundations of the Saudi state get undermined.Gross swindling of its oil wealth and profligate,debauched lifestyles of its ruling elite has beggared the country,sending it into eco decline and once that happens with less loot to share out you know what inevitably happens.This is a classic case of "when thieves fall out" in the royal court of the KSA ,former camel drivers elevated to royal status by the British empire.

Mad Bull Salmaan once allegedly threatened Vlad Putin threatening to send Chechen terrorists into Russia if he did not change tack on his ME policy.Later after Putin's Syrian demo.,we saw the monarch of the KSA fly to Moscow to grovel and kiss Putin's backside, begging for Russian SAMs! With the rapidly increasing criticism to
MBS's madness,the futile war in the Yemen,etc.,it was evident that whoever struck first would gain the upper hand.

The "crash" killing former Clown Prince Mukhrin's son appears to be no accidental shooting down .It was most likely an attempt by them to escape to the Yemen and safety from the madman.Mukrin's son would've been a major threat to MBS in the future.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2017 10:17

^^ plausible. an F15 or tornado could have easily tracked and taken the heli down.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2017 10:18

many saudi princes allegedly have dual passports so those who can might flee to qatar or UK for asylum. both places will not extradite them back easily.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Karthik S » 06 Nov 2017 10:23

What's with new prince's intention to modernize their country? It's not that they will be running out of petro dollars any time soon. When Shah of Iran and Saddam tried to modernize their respective societies, the public didn't receive them as expected. It even led to revolt. I am not sure if things will go as planned by new crown prince.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby disha » 06 Nov 2017 11:07

^They are running out of Petro-dollars Karthik'ji. The last quarter., barbarias GDP shrunk by 1% or rather their GDP growth was -1%. They are not able to do the IPO of HaramCo. With the loss of ISIS in Syria., their strategic space is shrinking. Yemen is a thorn stuck right in their backsides which they are not able to remove inspite of spending billions of dollars.

At this rate., by 2035 (mere 17 years from now)., the Barbaria will be a paupered nation with different tribes jostling to control Makkah and Medina since that is how they will be able to make any money on the momeens streaming in. From 2035 they will become a pawn on the great game between Iran and Turkey.

Hence the urgency to transform itself on the lines of UAE. Have you ever wondered why the UAE sovereign fund is being invested in India? And why Barbaria opened up its office to sell betrol in India (first time ever!!).

Here is the problem., MBS is a man in hurry trying to get Barbaria into 19th century., but the betro-Mullahs will kick and scream and try to revert back to 7th century (albeit with 21st century tools). Given that the barbaria will end up somewhere in between 13- or 14th century!

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 06 Nov 2017 12:21

Was Putin in the know of what has happened at the palace? The monarch of the KSA making a pilgrimage to Mother Russia to kiss the hem of Putin's pants,was two-fold.One,to keep oil prices high,as it benefits Russia too,by lower production and the other to spare Soothi Barbaria from the stick,which they feared abundantly,esp. after watching the Russians roll over ISIS and demonstrate naked brute force in all dimensions,by land,sea and air. It was also apology time for the king to make on behalf of his son the clown prince,who stupidly had threatened Putin earlier with terror!
Russia arming Iran to the fullest and supporting it in any attempt to whittle the Soothis down to size,is the great fear of the Soothis.The US is a tainted ally who historically lets down its former allies,often double-crossing them eventuality.Ask Marcos,Saddam,Noriega and the Shah of Iran for starters.

The former British PM Gordon Brown in his new book has alleged that the US betrayed Britain by concealing hard core intel that showed that Saddam did not possess any WMDs.Britain went to war on this and the false "evidence:" that Saddam possesed WMDs in a dossier that was "sexed up" for the same purpose,to get the British parliament's approval to go to war.Tony B Liar was an eager-beaver willing catamite who took Britain into a wholly illegal war,the consequences as we've seen have spread far and wide across the Middle east into Europe .This is something that India should pondre very carefully about before entering into any "Quad" with the US and co. Will the US similarly give us fake,doctored or conceal vital intel reg. China in order to make us wage war against it on bogus intel/assumptions?

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 38371.html

Saudi Arabia arrests 11 princes and four ministers in extraordinary 'consolidation of power'
‘The most recent crackdown breaks with the tradition of consensus within the ruling family’

Samuel Osborne
Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman has pledged a ‘moderate, open’ Saudi Arabia, breaking with ultra-conservative clerics in favour of catering to foreign investors and Saudi youth AFP/Getty
Saudi Arabia has arrested 11 princes, four officials and tens of former officials as part of a sweeping anti-corruption probe which further cements control in the hands of its young Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman.

Billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, who has extensive holdings in Western companies, was among those arrested, state news agencies reported.

A top security official, Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, was detained and replaced as minister of the powerful National Guard by Prince Khaled bin Ayyaf, consolidating Prince Mohammed’s control of security institutions which had previously been headed by separate branches of the ruling family.

News of the purge came after King Salman decreed the creation of a new anti-corruption committee chaired by Prince Mohammed, his 32-year-old son, who has swiftly amassed power since rising from obscurity less than three years ago.

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince says kingdom will return to ‘moderate, open Islam’
Analysts suggested the corruption probe, which targeted key members of the royal family, was a show of force by the crown prince, aimed at removing any potential opposition as he pushes an ambitious and controversial reform agenda.

READ MORE
Trump blames Iran for missile fired at Saudi Arabia by Yemen rebels :rotfl:
Trump begs Saudi to sell its national oil company shares in US
Saudi Arabia to begin uranium extraction in nuclear power drive :oops:
Saudi Arabia to allow women to attend sports stadiums in latest reform
Fallon says ‘criticism of Saudi Arabia in Parliament not helpful’
Saudi Arabia’s youth embrace crown prince’s desire for liberalisation

“The most recent crackdown breaks with the tradition of consensus within the ruling family whose secretive inner workings are equivalent to those of the Kremlin at the time of the Soviet Union,” wrote James Dorsey, a senior fellow at Singapore’s S Rajaratnam School of International Studies.

“Nonetheless, the dismissals and detentions suggest that Prince Mohammed, rather than forging alliances, is extending his iron grip to the ruling family, the military and the National Guard to counter what appears to be more widespread opposition within the family as well as the military to his reforms and the Yemen war.”

An economist at a big Gulf bank, who declined to be named because of political sensitivities, told Reuters nobody in Saudi Arabia believed corruption was at the root of the purge.

“It’s about consolidating power and frustration that reforms haven’t been happening fast enough,” the economist said.

Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, a research fellow at the James A Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University, told the Associated Press the arrests were designed to further smooth the crown prince’s eventual succession to the throne.

“As a leader who is set to remain in power for decades, Mohammed bin Salman is remaking the kingdom in his own image and signalling a potentially significant move away from the consensual balancing of competing interests that characterised Saudi rule in the past,” Mr Ulrichsen said.

Other people detained in the probe include former finance minister Ibrahim al-Assaf, a board member of national oil giant Saudi Aramco; economy minister Adel Fakieh, who once played a major role in drafting reforms; former Riyadh governor Prince Turki bin Abdullah; and Khalid al-Tuwaijiri, who headed the Royal Court under the late King Abdullah.

In addition to Prince Alwaleed, who is one of Saudi Arabia’s best-known international businessmen as an investor in firms such as Citigroup and Twitter, those detained included Bakr bin Laden, chairman of the big Saudi Binladin construction group, and Alwaleed al-Ibrahim, owner of the MBC television network.

Reporters suggested some detainees were being held at the opulent Ritz-Carlton hotel in the diplomatic quarter of Riyadh.

The detentions followed an earlier crackdown in September on political opponents of Saudi Arabia’s rulers that saw some 30 clerics, intellectuals and activists detained.

Additional reporting by agencies


Other reports hint at a Trump green light to Mad Bull S to execute his palace coup ,as this xcpt. indicates.
The arrests come amid a deepening confrontation between Saudi Arabia, the dominant Sunni Arab power in the Middle East, and Shia Iran.

The crisis has fueled a rapprochement between Riyadh and Washington, with senior Saudi officials praising President Donald Trump's decision to de-certify, but not dismantle, the Iran nuclear deal negotiated by Barack Obama.

Jared Kushner, Mr Trump's son-in-law and a top White House advisor, reportedly visited Saudi Arabia in October, something Ms Kinninmont says reveals the Trump administration’s “clear enthusiasm” for Mohammad bin Salman.

“Whenever there is high-level contact with the Trump administration, Saudi tends to emerge from that emboldened,” she said.

Mr Trump has publicly clashed with Alaweed bin Talal, the arrested owner of the London Savoy, who called him a “disgrace not only to the GOP but to all America” on Twitter in 2015 and predicted he would not win the election.

Then-candidate Trump fired back, labelling the prince “dopey” and accusing him of using his father’s money to try to control US politicians
.


The Soothi royals in charge seem to have played their cards v.well,keeping the bear at bay while obtaining the Trump Towers blessing as well! Let's see now what happens to the ousted royals-will their wealth be confiscated ( to help pay the Soothi bills and spoils for the victors) and will the asinine war in the Yemen continue ,to drag down the Soothis even more.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Gyan » 06 Nov 2017 12:43

MBS seems to have struck a deal with Trump, in which all princes funding people opposed to Trump Camp ie helping Clinton gang may have "also" been purged. Trump may be trying to cut off funding for anti-Trump Media & lobbying in USA from foreign sources . In return, Trump will increase pressure on Iran. I wonder whether similar action may be taken in other GCC nations against anti-trump funding?? Could the tantrum of Trump against Qatar also have been occasioned by some members of Qatar Royal family being on wrong side of Trump Camp in USA??

I expect portion of the wealth of the purged Saudi Royals being confiscated and perhaps reused to rescue Kushner.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2017 12:54

Be interesting to see if they will be exiled to rome and london with family and some wealth or put on show trials and punished with long prison terms

The mob in the square will surely demand a few heads roll

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2017 12:55

This resembles Xi’s takedown of rivals and business allies of his rivals
All are disgraced, in jail, died of stress or the lucky few ran away into the safety of anglosphere

No wonder houses in california and seattle vancouver in prime areas get sold at any price for cash down

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Baikul » 06 Nov 2017 14:41

If the report in the link below is right, another Saudi prince has snuffed it.

https://twitter.com/AlSuraEnglish/status/927402690614779905/photo/1

Losing one prince may be a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness.

I may run out of popcorn before this here gets done.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Karthik S » 06 Nov 2017 14:44

Wall Street Journal‏Verified account @WSJ
Saudi Arabia says Yemeni rebels’ missile attack on Riyadh was act of aggression by Iran


Now external front started? Problem is Iran doesn't have the military capacity and backing that Saudis have.

JE Menon
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby JE Menon » 06 Nov 2017 15:17

>>What does this portend? Whose side was this character on?

Shanmukh, sorry I just saw your query now...

1. The reports of death, arrests of multiple princes may be premature. Not saying it did not happen, but that it is too early to conclude that it has. Lists have been put up, etc. Entirely feasible that a few of these blokes may just return from a previously undisclosed (but not entirely stressless) holiday in Ta'if or some such...

2. What it means is that what was predicted in the article, and what in fact MBS said he would do, are materialising. There is zero doubt that there will be resistance. It may not be immediate. Although MBS said he would act "now and immediately", it appears no one (except BRF :D & Swarajya) took him seriously enough. Well, now they know. The compact between the Aal Al Shaikh and Ibn Saud will be tested, and I don't think it was ever more under stress than it is now. The key point to keep an eye out for here is what the compromise points will be on the part of MBS, if any. He now has full control over all the defence forces (army & national guard). Previously they were kept separate in case there was a coup threat (from one side or the other). Clearly, the destruction of Yemen has had many positives for MBS, who is said to be it's main architect.

3. The question is a simple one: will MBS succeed in his mission? If he is not killed, or otherwise incapacitated, he will - I am confident enough on this to put it out in public (disclaimer: that's not difficult because I have neither reputation nor money to lose). MBS is still, for all intents and purposes, a mystery figure. No one, apart perhaps from his immediate coterie, knows what sort of an individual he is really. What is in his mind, how does he think about Islam, the kingdom, it's role in the region and the world, about what is clearly going to be a technology-intensive and non-oil dominated future? He has made pronouncements here and there, but no one really knows. He is only 31 or 32, can't recall. I think he will drive his agenda down the throats, and he does not really mind what internal opposition or external observers think. If someone outside whines too loudly, I expect a statement to come out that may boil down to the following: "This is Saudi Arabia. We are a kingdom. This is the way we are choosing to do things, based on our traditions. We are not especially interested in your views about what we should be doing, but we will do what we need to do in view of the changes occurring in all spheres worldwide. Do you want to do business? Or not?" Guess what the rest of the world is going to say?

4. All this must not be taken to mean that Saudi Arabia is suddenly going to become "the next Dubai". (NEOM alone may be the next Dubai in MBS's way of thinking, distant, insulated and a sort of "Socio-Economic Free Zone). My sense is that MBS will want to make those changes that he thinks Saudi Arabia needs, including socio-economic changes, to overcome the challenges it faces. Does this mean a crackdown on the Salafist stuff? Yes, up to a point. Will women be getting greater freedoms? Most likely, expect more decisions before end of year. Will non-Muslims be allowed into Mecca/Medina? Think again. Will there be a sudden opening towards Iran? Think again.

Singha
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2017 15:35

The helicopter crash prince was the son of the old crown
Prince who was deposed when mbs took that seat

With 5000 princes there is a long list for mukhabarat to
Work down and either whitelist or blacklist

These are mostly soft palace nobles and will fall in line
Quickly most of them . All thats needed is house arrest
And freeze on their privy purse bank accounts


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