Joe’s Visit To Saudi Arabia

The political situation in Iran prior to the 1979 Iranian Revolution pitted the Shah against confusing mix of anti government groups. The Shah of Iran wanted his people to return to their Persian roots. He believed Islam was counter productive and had been forced upon his people. He wanted to change the calendar to one based on Zoroastrianism. He instituted changes in law that limited the ability of Shia clerics in the country. The straw that broke the camel’s back; women’s suffrage. The Shah making it legal for women to vote kicked off the revolution.

It’s more complicated than that of course. The Shah had suspended the constitution and his security forces had cracked down hard on protesters. His uneven response to the upheavals didn’t help. The other thing that didn’t help was the Carter administration being conned by the socialist Controllers to help the Ayatollah Khomeini return from exile in France to be a “peaceful” spiritual leader. They were fooled into thinking he would calm the situation.

Of course, when the dust settled, the Ayatollah and his clerics were in charge. A new Shia Theocracy was born that has been expanding it’s influence and supplying terrorists throughout the Middle East. Khomeini had most of the people from other anti Shah groups arrested or executed, to eliminate competition. People who had take part in the Revolution wanted a return to the constitutional monarchy, not a Socialist Theocratic Dictatorship.

President Joe Biden is currently on a visit to the Saudi Kingdom (Reuters). He should be applauded for his forward thinking and for cutting through the BS. This is a bold diplomatic step that has been largely criticized by the press. The same irresponsible press that spends much of it’s space for unkind words about Muhammed bin Salman.

I call them irresponsible because it seems they fail to recognize the complexities of the man’s position or appreciate his alliance to the west. They spend virtually no space criticizing Hamas rocket attacks or the Iranian government that supplies them. Stories of Iranian human rights violations are almost non existent. If you have time, watch Manufacturing Consent by Noam Chomsky

The Saudi royal family rules Saudi Arabia in an interesting power sharing structure. The Sunni priesthood has their own police force. Like medieval European kings, the church is ever present. Religion has the ability to influence the mob and threaten the Monarchy.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been a force for change in his nation. During his time in power the religious police have lost some of their power (Arab News). Women have been allowed to drive (BBC). These are small steps toward the liberalization of the nation. But they have drawn the ire of religious leaders in the kingdom who see themselves being undermined. They do not like bin Salman.

Most of the harsh punishments for crimes in Saudi Arabia are based on Muslim law. The ruling family cannot go against this tradition and maintain authority. They would be fueling an Islamic revolt.

Jamal Kashoggi was an opposition journalist from Saudi Arabia who opposed the Royal Family and Saudi intervention in Yemen. He was executed in Recap Erdogan‘s Turkiye (Tur KAY). He disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Turkiye. It is believed he was killed and dismembered. Did the Crown Prince have foreknowledge? It’s hard to say. There are people in his government (mostly family members) who may have acted on their own. They may have acted out of loyalty – or the desire to sabotage.

Currently there is a largely ex-patriot opposition movement called the National Assembly Party (NAAS). “The idea of the opposition party was established through failed experiments or practices that preceded it ( Islamist or Leftist ), whether they were calling for political participation or separatism.” (Wikipedia). It’s members are largely educated Saudi’s and Muslim clerics living abroad. What the former don’t understand and the latter do; if the Saudi Royal family is overthrown democracy will not be the result. A new Sunni Theocracy will arise, similar to that of Iran’s Shia government.

Did you know? ISIS is in part funded by donations from Saudi religious zealots (Wikipedia).

Bin Salman probably still thinks Phil is his friend.