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Monday, January 04, 2016

House of Saud about to collapse



The beheading of 47 political prisoners -- terrorists -- by the House of Saud may trigger a formal war between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The ayatollahs in Iran want control of Mecca and Medina, which are now in Saudi hands. This is the heart of the Islamic War, although there are plenty of other issues and frontlines.

The House of Saud sits on oil, and as oil prices dropped -- thanks to hydraulic fracturing and the onset of another global recession -- the Saudis are in trouble. The sheiks pacified their populations with an Arabian socialism (Iran and Iraq did too) that the Sauds no longer can afford. To scare people into obedience, the Saudis began cutting off heads. This led to Iran -- which pushes dissidence in Saudi Arabia to undermine the government -- to burn the Saudi embassy, and in response, Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties.

Bahrain, Sudan and the United Arab Emirates official sided with Saudi Arabia today. It is the Sunnis (Saudi Arabia) versus the Shia (Iran). And it comes when the Saudis are running out of money. They are cutting social security.

From CNN:
Saudi Arabia's finances are getting slammed by the crash in oil prices.
The government spent way more than it collected in 2015 -- leading to a budget deficit of nearly $100 billion.
Oil accounts for 75% of Saudi Arabia's revenue, and when crude prices were sky high, the country enjoyed frequent budget surpluses. Now oil has collapsed below $35 a barrel, compared to over $100 in mid-2014.
Saudi Arabia also said it spent more than expected on social security benefits and salaries for government workers and military members.
As a results, cuts are coming: The budget calls for a 14% reduction to 840 billion riyals ($224 billion), down from 975 billion ($260 billion).
Saudi Arabia is even thinking about cutting the massive discount it gives its citizens on gasoline. The Ministry of Finance confirmed it is "reviewing" a change to government subsidies on energy, water and electricity.
Saudi Arabia revealed other steps to fix its finances, including implementing a budget ceiling, reviewing public spending on projects and training 3,500 workers to improve the government's accounting practices.
Saudi Arabia may soon be Detroit with oil and men in sheets.

The likelihood of a formal Saudi-Iran War is rising, as is the probability of Saudi Arabia suffering a civil war. President 45 is going to have to deal with this, and President 44 is going to leave him with a weakened military, adversaries who mock us, and allies who no longer trust us.

Oh, and as the stock exchanges are showing today, President Obama will leave an economy in the crapper as well.

24 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I blame g̶l̶o̶b̶a̶l̶ ̶w̶a̶r̶m̶i̶n̶g̶ climate change.

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    2. Naaaah! AlGoreBull Worming!

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    3. ManBearPig!

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  2. I want the popcorn concession.

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    1. Obama is hiding a dark secret that just came out and this effects you!
      http://tinyurl.com/hakdxre

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  3. Authoritarian regimes rarely collapse gradually. They either fall suddenly or not at all. (The Soviet Union is an exception because it committed suicide by policy rather than regime collapse. A different leader could have arrested the decline at many points.) So the question is how the fall of the House of Saud is going to happen. Will it be a popular uprising? A coup? Another member of the House of Saud, or from the outside?

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    1. In Iran vs Saudi Arabia, which side does the US take and which side does Russia take?

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    2. To (mis)quote Henry Kissinger, about a prior conflict on the Gulf, "Why can't they both lose?

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  4. The Sand Amish are usually so peaceful.

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  5. And, if we are lucky, they will stop spending money on Wahhabi mosques and schools in Europe and America.

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  6. Saudi Arabia has been 'about to collapse' for about 35 years now. Somehow, it never happens.

    Strange as it may seem to some, there have been upward and downward flux of oil price before and business recessions before.

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    1. False until true. SA is that many more years accustomed to status quo, and having more near-slaves than citizens in its kingdom. Also, in SA, where the oil is is generally where the Shiites are. Russia is in similar straits for oil income and might try to light the match to this tinderbox and play warmonger to reduce supplies. Meanwhile, let's frack away.

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  7. Neither Sunnis nor Shiites are an endangered species, so if they want to kill each other, I have no problem with it.

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    1. And if they were endangered, I would still not have a problem.

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  8. Since we're normalizing relations with Iran, maybe we can sell weapons to *both* sides. Never let a crisis go to waste, ya know.

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    1. LOL. reminds me of the board meeting scene from "Head Office".

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  9. A land war between Saudi Arabia and Iran with Kuwait and southern Iraq caught in the mess...what's not to like. Supply small arms to both sides and make sure they have plenty of crude and brutal devices to use against one another.

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  10. Saudi Arabia is not a nation state in the way we think of them in the modern world. It is a family possession. The current nominal ruler, King Salman is a son of the founder of the dynasty, ibn Saud, who died 60 years ago. At the beginning of the 20th century ibn Saud was a penniless desert bandito. His family had historic claims to the area in eastern Arabia around Riyadh and a historic alliance with the heretical and militant Wahhabi dynasty of imams. Ibn Saud put together a tribal alliance, blessed by the Wahhabi, called the Ikwan. After WWI, he conquer the Hijaz, the western province of Arabia containing Mecca and Medina and displaced the British clients, the Husseini sherifs (See, Lawrence of Arabia), who were in turn rewarded with monarchies in Jordan and Iraq.

    Ibn Saud, the ruler of most of Arabia, became the luckiest and richest man in the world, when American engineers found oil in his eastern provinces in the 1930s. When he died in the 1950s, the royal treasury, which was a chest kept in his tent, was stuffed with gold. His children have run the kingdom as their private property ever since.

    Here is an important fact. There is no theory of legitimate inheritance of a kingdom in Islam. The first born son of the first wife is not a more legitimate heir to the throne than the seventh son of the seventh concubine. Islamic regimes have developed ways of dealing with this problem. One is that many heirs were designated before the old king died. The Ottomans had the charming and effective custom of having the successor to the throne strangle all other then living male heirs to the throne with a silken bow string upon his succession. It was part of their success. Their decline began when they abandoned it.

    In years past, such as when ibn Saud's son and sucessor, ibn Abd al-Aziz ibn Saud, was deposed in 1964 because of his mismanagement and wasteful spending, the family was able to act on a unified basis. Of course, it was a much smaller and more cohesive entity at that time. It is worth noting that the younger Saud's sucessesor was his brother Faisal, who was, in turn assasinated by one of his nephews.

    The current king, Salman was born in 1935 (80 yro) and is also one of ibn Sauds sons. I think that he maybe the very last one who is still alive. He has appointed his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef, 55, crown prince and succesor and young son Mohammed bin Salman, 30, as deputy crown prince. If he were to die, then bin Nayef sould be crowned king, and bin Salman sould be crown prince. Bin Nayef would be the first grandson of ibn Saud to be crowned.

    OTOH, there are hundreds of grandsons of ibn Saud, and thousands of great-grandsons and great-great grandsons. It is possible that the succession will go smoothly, but it is also possible that it won't. At this point you should stop reading this and re-read Shakespeare's histories of the War of the Roses.

    Out of the thousands of male heirs of ibn Saud, there is, no doubt, at least one who is saying to himself: "These senile old men will lead us into ruin. We need strong young leadership to handle the infidel dog shias and survive the Western assault on our world. I am that man."

    As I said above, there is no primogeniture in the Islamic world. And history shows that even where there was, disputed successions have happened and have led to civil war.

    Like I said, read Shakepeare, not me.

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    1. The House of Saud has managed successions for two centuries now.

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    2. Maybe we should look west,Obama destabilized the region, maybe we can send him to fix,after all he is a Nobel Peace prize winner Lol just kidding

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    3. I nominate Barack to be King of Saudi Arabia. All he needs is to give a speech!
      Then he can listen to the most wonderful sound in the world in it's birthplace.

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  11. >>>>>>>That's all folks!
    - Bugs Bunny

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  12. Read Twilight in the Desert by Matthew Simmons

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