Tag Archives: Saudi Arabia

America Has Become a Total Joke, by Michael Krieger

The below picture of Trump with his hands on the orb of oleaginous homage honoring ostentatous oil oligarchs is worth a million words and a billion laughs. From Michael Krieger at libertyblitzkrieg.com:

I’ve stopped calling what our government has done a cover-up. Cover-up suggests a passive activity. What they’re doing now I call aggressive deception.

– Former Senator Bob Graham, co-chair of Congress’s 9/11 Joint Inquiry

This country is becoming a total joke and it’s not merely because of Donald Trump. While he’s certainly becoming a key player in our national embarrassment, this country’s decent into a reckless Banana Republic has been a long time coming.

Let’s take stock of where things stand in mid-2017. Our opposition Democratic Party (Hillary in a leather jacket yelling about Russia) is a joke. Our corporate media is a joke. Our foreign policy is a joke. Our economy is a joke. Our justice system is a joke. It’s all a joke, and it might even be somewhat humorous if it wasn’t so incredibly dangerous.

Today’s post will focus on Trump’s recent visit to Saudi Arabia, a revolting spectacle which I could barely bring myself to follow. It all started Saturday morning as I tried to enjoy a beautiful day with my growing family and parents who were in town for a visit. My day was more or less ruined upon witnessing the appalling scene of Trump and his top advisors dancing with the rulers of the terrorist sponsoring state of Saudi Arabia while clutching swords. I’m sorry for doing this to you, but in case you missed it.

Then there was the speech. It was an inspiring display of soaring oratory if empty platitudes and belligerent neocon foreign policy is your thing. On various occasions Mr. Trump alluded to the fact that the U.S.-Saudi alliance was a “partnership based on shared interests and values.” Which got me thinking…which of the following was he referring to exactly.

 

Or perhaps it’s just a partnership based on oil and imperial ambitions. Nah, don’t be a conspiracy theorist.

To continue reading: America Has Become a Total Joke

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Donald of Arabia: A Disgusting Spectacle, by Justin Raimondo

It‘s hard to argue with Justin Raimondo on this one. From Raimondo at antiwar.com:

This is the worst yet

Has there been a more disgusting spectacle during the four months of this presidency than the sight of Donald Trump slobbering all over the barbarous Saudi monarch and his murderous family of petty princelings? It’s enough to make any normal American retch, especially when one remembers what Trump said about them during the election:

“Saudi Arabia and many of the countries that gave vast amounts of money to the Clinton Foundation want women as slaves and to kill gays. Hillary must return all money from such countries!”

And then there was this tweet:

“Tell Saudi Arabia and others that we want (demand!) free oil for the next ten years or we will not protect their private Boeing 747s. Pay up!”

Now Trump’s son in law, Jared Kushner, is calling up Lockheed-Martin to get a discount for the Saudis, personally brokering the biggest arms deal in US history. What a difference a presidency makes!

The old Trump told us that the Saudis were “mouth pieces, bullies, cowards,” who were “paying ISIS,” but now they’re our partners in the “war on terrorism.” Why it seems like only yesterday that he was calling out Saudi princes like Alwaleed bin Talal for thinking they can “control our US politicians” – today he’s kowtowing to them.

Most tellingly, it was Trump who made a campaign issue out of the missing 28 pages redacted from the Joint congressional report on the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In calling for their release, he painted a scenario in which the Saudi royals assisted the hijackers and said:

“You know, it’s sort of nice to know who your friends are, and perhaps who your enemies are.”

Does Trump know who are our friends and who are our enemies?

While the US government, under both Trump and Obama, has routinely maintained that Iran is the biggest exporter of terrorism, that is utter nonsense: the Saudis easily outdo the mullahs of Tehran. Riyadh funds radical madrassas throughout the world that preach pure hatred of the West: they are incubators of terrorism, and have been wreaking havoc from one end of the globe to the other for decades. The terrorist groups that have destroyed Syria are the progeny of the Saudis, and their allies among the Gulf states.

To continue reading: Donald of Arabia: A Disgusting Spectacle

President Trump: Cancel Your Saudi Trip, Play More Golf, by Ron Paul

The title advice can and should be offered to 100 percent of America’s politicians. By all means, drop whatever it is you’re doing, and go play golf. America would save billions by subsidizing their country club memberships. From Ron Paul at ronpaulinstitute.org:

President Trump is about to embark on his first foreign trip, where he will stop in Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the Vatican, before attending a NATO meeting in Brussels and the G-7 summit in Sicily. The media and pundits have loudly wondered why hasn’t he gone on a foreign trip sooner. I wonder why go at all?

What does the president hope to achieve with these meetings? This is a president who came into office with promises that we would finally start to mind our own business overseas. In December, he said that the policy of US “intervention and chaos” overseas must come to an end. Instead, he is jumping into a region – the Middle East – that has consumed the presidencies of numerous of his predecessors.

On Saudi Arabia, President Trump has shifted his position from criticism of the Saudi regime to a seemingly warm friendship with Saudi deputy crown prince Mohammad bin Salman. He has approved weapons sales to Saudi Arabia that President Obama had halted due to Saudi human rights abuses, particularly in its horrific war on Yemen.

While visiting Saudi Arabia, one of the most extreme theocracies on earth – where conversion to Christianity can bring the death penalty – President Trump will attend a meeting of Muslim leaders to discuss the threats of terrorism and religious extremism. No, not in Saudi Arabia, but in Iran, where Christianity is legal and thriving!

Perhaps President Trump’s flip-flop on Saudi Arabia was inspired by the ten separate Washington, D.C. public relations firms the Kingdom keeps on the payroll, at a cost of $1.3 million per month. That kind of money can really grease the policy wheels in Washington.

From there, the US President will travel to Israel. Does he believe he will finally be able to solve the 70 year old Israel-Palestine conflict by negotiating a good deal? If so, he’s in for a surprise.

To continue reading: President Trump: Cancel Your Saudi Trip, Play More Golf

U.S. Insurers Sue Saudis for $4.2 Billion Over 9/11, by Jason Ditz

It’s almost a 100 percent probability this suit gets settled before even the discovery phase. For the Saudis, $4.2 billion is a small price to pay to prevent potentially devestating disclosures. From Jason Ditz at antimedia.org:

Last year’s Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), a bill which allowed Americans to sue Saudi Arabia in US court over their involvement in 9/11, has yielded another major lawsuit yesterday, a $4.2 billion suit filed by over two dozen US insurers related to losses sustained because of the 2001 attack.

The lawsuit is targeting a pair of Saudi banks, and a number of Saudi companies with ties to the bin Laden family, accusing them of various activities in support of al-Qaeda in the years ahead of 9/11, and subsequently having “aided and abetted” the attack.

The biggest target is the Saudi National Commercial Bank, which is majority state-owned. The Saudi government heavily pressured the Obama Administration to block the JASTA last year, threatening to crash the US treasury market if it led to lawsuits, but overwhelming Congressional support still got it passed into law.

While there were more than a few lawsuits already filed in the past several weeks related to JASTA, this is by far the biggest, and most previous lawsuits are still in limbo as the court and lawyers try to combine them into various class action groups.

Historically, US sovereign immunity laws have prevented suits against the Saudi government related to overseas terrorism. With the release of the Saudi-related portions of the 9/11 Report last year, however, such suits were inevitable, and the federal government could no longer protect the Saudis from litigation.

To continue reading: U.S. Insurers Sue Saudis for $4.2 Billion Over 9/11

Meet the Lawyer Who’s Suing Saudi Arabia for Financing the 9/11 Attacks, by Michael Krieger

There’s nothing like a court case, with discovery, depositions, and cross-examination, to uncover hidden truths. The Saudi Arabian government is being sued for aiding and abetting the 9/11 conspirators. If this suit proceeds, the truths uncovered should be pretty interesting. From Michael Krieger at libertyblitzkrieg.com:

I’ve stopped calling what our government has done a cover-up. Cover-up suggests a passive activity. What they’re doing now I call aggressive deception.

– Former Senator Bob Graham, co-chair of Congress’s 9/11 Joint Inquiry

With the recent arrival of our new baby daughter, free time for reading has been in extremely short supply as of late. That said, I did find some time yesterday while she was napping to read a fascinating and infuriating article published at Politico about a New York attorney’s mission to hold Saudi Arabia accountable for its role in financing the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Longtime readers will be aware of the fact that I’ve never accepted the U.S. government’s fairytale story about how the 9/11 attacks went down, and my suspicions of deep Saudi involvement were confirmed by last year’s release of the infamous “28 pages.” Here’s an excerpt of what I wrote at the time from the post, The 28-Pages Are Way Worse Than I Thought:

Shortly after the release of the infamous 28-pages earlier today, the White House issued a statement dismissing allegations of Saudi involvement in the attacks of 9/11. I believe such assurances are intended to prevent people from reading it in the first place, because if you actually read them, your mouth will be wide open the entire time in disbelief.

There are only two conclusions any thinking person can come to after reading the 28-pages.

1. Elements within the Saudi government ran the operations behind the 9/11 attack.

2. The U.S. government covered it up.

But don’t take my word for it. You should read it yourself.

If you missed that post the first time around, you should definitely check it out.

To continue reading: Meet the Lawyer Who’s Suing Saudi Arabia for Financing the 9/11 Attacks

Lawmakers Demand Trump Pump Brakes On Military Action In Yemen, by Deirdre Fulton

Nobody has offered even a half-baked rationale for why the US is helping Saudi Arabia wage war against poor, starving Yemen. From Deirdre Fulton at theantimedia.org:

As conflict swirls over the recent U.S. bombing in Syria, more than 50 bipartisan lawmakers have demanded President Donald Trump seek approval from Congress before expanding U.S. military action in another Middle East theater: Yemen.

The letter sent this week came in response to reports that the Trump administration is considering a proposal to directly engage the U.S. military in Saudi Arabia’s war against the Houthis in Yemen, including a planned United Arab Emirates-led attack on the Yemeni port of Hodeida, currently held by Houthi rebels.

“Such an attack could push the country into full-blown famine, where nearly half a million children in Yemen are facing starvation,” said U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), who led the letter campaign along with Reps. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.), and Barbara Lee (D-Calif.).

As Common Dreams reported in March, the U.S.-supported war in Yemen has already led the country to what one journalist described as “the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world.”

Furthermore, “Direct U.S. hostilities against Yemen’s Houthis would run counter to your pledge to pursue a ‘disciplined, deliberate and consistent foreign policy’ that protects American families in ‘every decision’,” reads the letter to Trump. “Indeed, according to U.S. defense officials, the U.S.-backed Saudi war against Houthis in Yemen has already ‘strengthened al Qaeda there’ and poses ‘a serious threat to U.S. security’.”

The lawmakers, who garnered 50 additional signatures for their missive, note that “Congress has never authorized the actions under consideration.”

To continue reading: Lawmakers Demand Trump Pump Brakes On Military Action In Yemen

US Provided Cover for the Saudi Starvation Strategy in Yemen, by Gareth Porter

When politicians start talking about “the children,” watch out, some sort of mischief is underway. Was Trump really moved by pictures of dead children? Probably not. American intervention has been leaving dead children in its wake for decades. Trump has shown no remorse for those killed in Yemen by US special forces and Saudi Arabian bombs on his watch—he’s lifted restrictions on selling the kingdom more bombs!

SLL, Calling A Bluff?

From Gareth Porter at antiwar.com:

As Yemen’s population has teetered on the brink of mass starvation in recent months, the United States has played a crucial role in enabling the Saudi strategy responsible for that potential humanitarian catastrophe.

Both the Obama and Trump administrations have prioritized the US’s alliance with the Saudis and their Gulf allies over the lives of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis under imminent threat of starvation.

Although the UN agencies have offered no public estimate of the number of Yemenis who have died of malnutrition-related conditions, it is likely that the figure is much higher than the estimate of 10,000 killed directly by the Saudi-coalition bombing. United Nations agencies have estimated that 462,000 Yemeni children under five years of age are already suffering severe acute malnutrition, putting them at serious risk of death from starvation and malnutrition-related disease.

The Saudi coalition has pursued a war strategy of maximizing pressure on the Houthi resistance by destroying agricultural, health and transportation infrastructure and by choking off access to food and fuel for most of Yemen’s population. The United States has enabled the Saudis to pursue that strategy by refueling the Saudi-led coalition planes bombing Yemen and selling the bombs. Equally important, however, the US has provided the political-diplomatic cover that the Saudis need to carry out this ruthless endeavor without massive international blowback.

The Trump administration has gone even further in supporting the Saudi strategy. Whereas the Obama administration opposed a Saudi-led coalition offensive to regain control over the main port of Hodeidah and the rest of the Red Sea coast, saying it would worsen the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, the Trump administration has clearly given the green light to th Saudis to launch that offensive.

To continue reading: US Provided Cover for the Saudi Starvation Strategy in Yemen