Contours of Saudi-US Ties
- DR. ABDUL RUFF
[Saudi Arabia: Power, Legitimacy and Stability-2]
The super power USA and the top oil producer Saudi Arabia have had full diplomatic relations since 1933. The USA recognized the government of King Ibn Saud in 1931, and two years later in 1933, Ibn Saud granted a concession to the US company, Standard Oil of California, allowing them to explore for oil in the country's Eastern Province, al-Hasa. The company gave the Saudi government £35,000 and also paid assorted rental fees and royalty payments.
And, thus, trade – and not mutual appreciation of faiths- dictated the ties between these two nations practicing different religions. 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared that "the defense of Saudi Arabia is vital to the defense of the United States", approved the creation of the state-owned Petroleum Reserves Corporation, with the intent that it purchase all the stock of CASOC and thus gain control of Saudi oil reserves in the region..
During the discovery of large capacities of oil in Saudi Arabia, America’s foreign interest was simultaneously drifting toward Saudi Arabia. America’s continuous demand on oil and the Saudis need of a balanced economy had greatly resulted in a strong relationship with Saudi Arabia, which could be the strongest they both encountered.
Trade exchanges in oil and arms have been going on for years since then. The two nations have encountered obstacles in the path of a successful relationship since it first began and the obstacles been impeded within the Arab-Israeli conflict, World War II, the Cold War, anti-communism strategy, Gulf War I and II, and the World War- III also known as NATO Terror War. However, eventually, the relationship reconstructed itself after each conflict and became stronger in some cases owing mainly to coercive diplomacy of USA.
A major obstacle between the two ties was World War II with the US’s large involvement in the war, which resulted in great negative impact toward the establishment of a strong complete relationship with Saudi Arabia. Also, the US support to the establishment of an Israeli state in the Middle East resulted in an arguing conflict between the ties and it was the relations first conflict but it was later resolved.
USA and its terror partner UK decided to create Israel in Mideast to eventually control the Arab nations through a militarily powerful Israel and in 1945 President Franklin D. Roosevelt met with King Ibn Saud aboard the USS Quincy, discussing topics such as the countries' security relationship and the creation of a Jewish country in the Mandate of Palestine.
USA terrorized Saudi Arabia by getting the fascist forces to attack it. The US was deeply involved in World War II, and as a result US-Saudi relations were put on the 'back burner'. This negligence left Saudi Arabia vulnerable to attack. Italy, an Axispower, bombed a CASCO oil installation in Dhahran crippling Saudi Arabia's oil production. This attack left Bin Saud scrambling for to find an external power that would protect the country, fearing further attacks that would most likely cease the country’s oil production and the flow of pilgrims coming into Mecca to perform Hajj, the base of the Saudi power and economy at that time. Bin Saud therefore approved the US’s request to allow the US air force to fly over and construct airfields in Saudi Arabia. Thus Americans tightened control over Saudi Arabia. Bin Saud therefore approved the US’s request to allow the US air force to fly over and construct airfields in Saudi Arabia. The oil installations were rebuilt and protected by the US, the pilgrims’ routes were protected, and the US gained a much needed direct route for military aircraft heading to Iran and the Soviet Union. In 1945, after World War II, even though Saudi government saw the US forces as a major component of the Saudi military defense strategy, Saudi citizens began to feel uncomfortable with US forces still operating in Dhahran.
As part of policy execution for Mideast, the US established a permanent US Military Training Mission in the kingdom in 1951. This agreement formed the basis of what grew into a longstanding security relationship. Two years later, King Abdel died and was succeeded by his son, Crown Prince Saud, who was known for his reputation as a spendthrift. USA very cleverly used him to advance US agenda in Mideast. Meanwhile USA also cultivated Shi’ia dominated Persia-Iran to be sued against Saudi Arabia.
As a direct consequence of Sept-11 hoax in USA, Saudi recognition to the Taliban regime stopped and as of November 2001, the Bush regime publicly praised Saudi support for the so-called “war on terrorism” which is in fact a war on slam. In order to coerce Saudi leaders to help in the destabilization of Afghanistan, USA employed the phrase that “the Saudis were not cooperating with Americans” and that made Saudis to promote US imperialism.
Americas pursue their own interests- ad not those of Arabs. The start of the Cold War helped USA to further tighten its hold over Saudi people by creating speculations about a Soviet attack on Mecca. Military relationship between Saudi Arabia and the US was therefore greatly strengthened. The US was greatly concerned about Soviet communism into Europe and USA and devised a strategy of 'containing' the spread of communism but Arabs thought putting Saudi security and spread of communism within Arabian Peninsula were at the top of Washington’s list of priorities. Harry S. Truman’s administration also promised Bin Saud that he would protect Saudi Arabia from Soviet influence and not from possible Soviet attacks. President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s new anti-Soviet alliance combined most of “the kingdom’s regional rivals and foes”, which rightly raised the Saudi suspicions, forcing Saud to join the pro-Soviet strategy with Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser. Saud dismissed the US forces and replaced them by Egyptian forces. Thus, this act had sparked and innovated a new and a large conflict in the relationship. But in 1956, during the Suez crisis, Saud began to cooperate with the US again after Eisenhower’s opposition of the Israeli, British, and French plan to seize the canal. Eisenhower opposed the plan because of anti-Soviet purposes, but King Saud had admired the act and decided to start cooperating with the USA. In 1957, Saud decided to renew the US base in Dhahran. In 1962, Egypt attacked Saudi Arabia from bases in Yemen during the 1962 Yemeni revolution because of Saudi Arabia’s Anti-revolution propaganda, which made Saud seek the US support. President John F. Kennedy immediately responded to Saud’s request by sending US war planes in July 1963 to the war zone to stop the attack which was putting US interests in risk. An oil embargo 1973 against the USA and Europe in favor of the Arab position unsettled the ties. By 1974, Saudi Arabia started pumping oil to the US again. The Saudis increase of oil production to stabilize the oil price and the support of anti-communism have all contributed to closer relations with the USA. 1979, the US sent F-15 fighters to Saudi Arabia for further protection from communism (Hart, 1998). Furthermore, the US and Saudi Arabia were both supporting anti-communist groups in Afghanistan and struggling countries, the groups later became known as Al-Qaida.
The first Americans to travel to Saudi Arabia were Christian missionary doctors. They failed to win any converts to Christianity among the Bedouins. The era of terror war has not made any Arab to take shelter in other religion.
There are now fewer doubts about US-Saudi collaboration on issues like Sept-11 hoax and illegal invasion of sovereign and Islamizing Afghanistan. However, in order to control vast energy resources of Iraq, USA decided to attack Iraq by ignoring Saudi mindset. But the irritation of Riyadh on that account has not lingered on.
While Riyadh opposed NATO attacks on Iraq and murder of President Saddam Hussein and making Iraq a Shiite regime, it supported all other terror operations of NATO in Islamic world, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Libya and still wants NATO to attack Iran. USA also used Saudi to support CIA brainchild Al-Qaeda. Here Saudi Arabia has lost its credentials as defender of Islam and Muslims and USA has used this dichotomy of Riyadh policy in favor of its war against Islam.
US-Saudi ties got restarted after the “uncomfortable” briefly long season following the Sept-11. After President G. W. Bush's two visits to Saudi Arabia in 2008—which was the first time a US president visited a foreign country twice in less than four months—and King Abdullah’s three visits to the US—2002, 2005 and 2008—the relations have surely reached their peak. They bought and sold goods, making many Americans and Saudis billionaires over night. The two nations have expanded their relationship beyond oil and terrorism. Eager to create a pro-US Saudis, King Abdullah allocated special funds for young Saudis to “study” in the USA. Just on the eve of Arab Spring the King spent months in USA on medical treatment.
The terror war enhanced huge military deals between USA and Saudi Arabia a as well as other Arab nations. In October 20, 2010, USA decided to make the biggest arms sale in American history - an estimated $60.5 billion purchase by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The package represents a considerable improvement in the offensive capability of the Saudi armed forces. US-trained Saudi forces, along with military installations built to US specifications made Saudi military closer to America’s.
The cooperation against communism brought Saudi close to USA and with the end of communism relations lost their significance. They do not have common enemy but Islam became American enemy. Enactment of domestic anti-terrorism policies targeting Muslims by Saudi made Saudi a favorite of Americans. September 11, 2001, was the worst day the relationship had ever faced. The US is still suspicious of Saudi Arabia.
Even though USA targets Islam and Saudi Arab to promote its own religion as democracy, Arabs have failed to read the real anti-Islamic American mind and instead are defeat after defeat they are convinced by the message that the US-Saudi relations had begun to run “smooth” again. That is failure of Saudi policy.
While USA and Europe were quick to launch the illegal Israeli regime in Mideast and promoting it, they still refuse to establish Palestine by besieged Palestinians on their own lands. The USA UK and Israel use UNSC to push the Palestine issue to the sidelines for years now, while Israel keeps attacking Palestinians, killing the innocent Palestinians each time.
Not just Saudi policy has not worked towards creating a peaceful Mideast, but entire Arab League which it leads also has also failed collectively in protecting Islamic interests and resources from the enemies. They have only helped the NATO terror gangs to destabilize Islamic word and kill millions of Muslims. By doing so, they have deliberately discredited Islam.
د. عبد راف
Dr. Abdul Ruff, Specialist on State Terrorism; Educationalist;Chancellor-Founder of Centor for International Affairs(CIA); Independent Analyst-columnist;Chronicler of Foreign occupations & Freedom movements(Palestine,Kashmir, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Xinjiang, Chechnya, etc); Former university Teacher;/website:abdulruff.wordpress.com/ firstname.lastname@example.org/91-9961868309/91-9961868309