Whither Saudi Arabia?


yosef shompeter

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The UN's Agnes Callamard has found clear evidence Saudi Arabia officials planned and carried out the murder, calling it “the gravest violation of the right to life.”

“Evidence collected during my mission to Turkey shows prime facie case that Mr Khashoggi was the victim of a brutal and premeditated killing, planned and perpetrated by officials of the State of Saudi Arabia,” she said.

“The murder of Jamal Khashoggi and the sheer brutality of it has brought irreversible tragedy to his loved ones. It is also raising a number of international implications which demand the urgent attention of the international community including the United Nations.”

https://www.news.com.au/world/middle-east/un-probe-finds-saudi-arabia-officials-planned-and-perpetrated-murder-of-jamal-khashoggi/news-story/c4a70e14ad2c3b459bccca8c79c9b83d
Tomorrow she'll come out and say the earth is round. Like pretty much the dogs in the street all know what happened Kashoggi. It's not Rocket Surgery. The video shows him going into the consulate, and then the second video shows the look-alike coming out.
What is interesting is that --what's his face, Erdogan is keeping the ball in the air and is trying to stop the story dying. Meanwhile the Meeja focus is on other things. You name it: Brexit, Climate Change, Priests in the Vatican screwing nuns etc., etc.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Tomorrow she'll come out and say the earth is round. Like pretty much the dogs in the street all know what happened Kashoggi. It's not Rocket Surgery. The video shows him going into the consulate, and then the second video shows the look-alike coming out.
What is interesting is that --what's his face, Erdogan is keeping the ball in the air and is trying to stop the story dying. Meanwhile the Meeja focus is on other things. You name it: Brexit, Climate Change, Priests in the Vatican screwing nuns etc., etc.
I agree with you that everyone knows what happened, but to continue with your image, we live in a time when flat-earthers call the round earth proposition a theory at best and fake news at worst.

The UN report's principal value is that it keeps this issue, and by extension the odious nature of the Al Saud regime, in the limelight.

This is not the final report - that will come around the middle of the year.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Good article.

I never thought that the Aramco floatation would be an attractive proposition from an investors perspective. The banks may have been drooling over the potential fees but as an investment proposition it had few attractions for a number of reasons:

1 - The inevitable meddling of the Government would continue unabated. Aramco is not and never was a normal company - it is a personal instrument of the Al Sauds;
2 - Aramco will continue to be obliged to hire and pay inflated salaries to thousands of supernumeraries from the Royal family and their friends;
3 - Aramco will continue to have to provide unrelated services (e.g. run hospitals, airlines, schools etc.) that the moribund public sector is incapable of doing properly; and most importantly
4 - the investment value of Aramco is inextricably linked to the value (or more accurately the quantum) of Saudi Arabia's oil reserves, which may or may not be as disclosed.
 

Golah veNekhar

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Soon Saudi Arabia will join the Shia "crescent" and the House of Saud will relocate to the United States. That will change everything.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Soon Saudi Arabia will join the Shia "crescent" and the House of Saud will relocate to the United States. That will change everything.
The House of Saud will fall - it is the fate of all monarchies in all ages. Some of those who survive may go to the US - more will visit their money in Switzerland.

If they fall the Al Khalifa's will go with them, and Bahrain will fall to the Shia. However there aren't enough Shia in the Eastern Province - it will not become part of a political Shia crescent.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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The Bezos/AMI feud is embroiling the Saudis - could be interesting!
 

Hillmanhunter1

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The Bezos/AMI feud is embroiling the Saudis - could be interesting!
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has denied that it had anything to do with the leaking of intimate photographs and texts of the Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos to the National Enquirer, as the row between the world’s richest man and the tabloid rumbles on.

The Saudi minister of state for foreign affairs, Adel al-Jubeir, took to the TV political shows in the US on Sunday, denying the kingdom had played a role in the publication of lurid texts between Bezos and his extramarital girlfriend, Lauren Sánchez. “This is something between the two parties, we have nothing to do with it,” he told CBS’ Face the Nation, adding: “It sounds to me like a soap opera.”

Saudi Arabia denies role in leak of Jeff Bezos’s messages to National Enquirer | Technology | The Guardian

An interesting question however is where did AMI (owner of the National Enquirer) get the cash to refinance its debt mountain:

"American Media — owner of the National Enquirer and Us Weekly — astonished most media observers by raising $460 million to refinance its debt by managing to attract new investors to jump in along with existing stakeholders Leon Cooperman and Chatham Asset Management".

American Media Inc. stuns observers with $460M refinance

AMI appears to ne owned by two investment funds/vehicles - Chatham Asset Management, LLC and Omega Charitable Partners LP.

The Board of Directors of AMI includes David Pecker, two representatives of Chatham Asset Management, and David R Hughes, who is described as having "previously served as executive vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer of Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc".

Board of Directors | American Media Inc

The real power behind Pecker/AMI is Anthony Melchiorre, founder and Managing Partner at Chatham Asset Management.

Interesting times.
 

Shpake

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Saudi Arabia: MBS 'clampdown' fuels surge in numbers of Saudi refugees - CNN
Saudi Arabia: MBS 'clampdown' fuels surge in numbers of Saudi refugees - CNN
Makes for interesting reading. It's kind of astounding that people coming from the oil-rich countries are coming here and seeking asylum. I've little objection to oil-rich Arabs coming here and spending money. Maybe even settling here so long as the numbers are small and the money is big. But this throws many questions up in the air. If their daughters try to make a bolt for freedom and come to the free and easy "West" as in the "Latifa case"& Mary Robinson.... well it's a safe bet that Daddy, Sheikh al Maktoum or whatever his name is ain't prepared to bankroll his daughter in her search for freedom. As a matter of fact he'll use his money as a way of putting her under pressure. In effect this mean that Latifa and the other Saudi girls who make a break for it will have to live as asylum-seekers ... and eventually go out and work from 9 to 5.
One or two of the girls might find a publisher to bring out a book called like: "Dramatic cruelty in my golden Cage in Riad".
(or : "just couldn't get a decent ri-ad in Riad") to the massive embarrassment of his excellency Sheik al Whathisname and his many wives):smile:
Compare this type of case with the black lads who have been fished out of the Mediterranean by Long Seoladh Gráinne, ending up in an asylum centre and after the last court of appeal tells 'em: "Look. We can't find any reasonable argument to explain why you think you are persecuted". In theory anyway, they are then repatriated to their homeland as they are economic refugees.
But compare the two cases of the black economic migrants and the Saudi Princesses.
Chalk and Cheese, really.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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This is depressing stuff.

Tom Barrack is a close friend and ally of President Donald Trump and has represented Trump on television news segments. He also served as the chairman of the Presidential Inaugural Committee and was senior adviser to Trump's presidential campaign.

Like Trump he's real estate developer, with no obvious expertise in foreign relations. So why is he in Abu Dhabi saying that it is a “mistake” to criticise the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

According to Barrack “The problem that has happened with the Khashoggi incident,” he said, “is the same problem with the West misunderstanding the east that has existed since Sykes-Picot.”

“So, the West is confused, it doesn’t understand the rule of law in the kingdom, it doesn’t understand what succession in the kingdom is, it doesn’t understand how there can be a dilemma with a population that has 60 per cent of people under the age of 20.”

He later added that the West had always been confused about the Middle East.

Trump backer Tom Barrack defends Saudi Arabia
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Hillmanhunter1

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"There are growing signs of a potentially destabilising rift between the king of Saudi Arabia and his heir, the Guardian has been told.

King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman are understood to have disagreed over a number of important policy issues in recent weeks, including the war in Yemen.

The unease is said to have been building since the murder in Turkey of the dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, which the CIA has reportedly concluded was ordered by Prince Mohammed. However, these tensions increased dramatically in late February when the king, 83, visited Egypt and was warned by his advisers he was at risk of a potential move against him, according to a detailed account from a source."

Rumours grow of rift between Saudi king and crown prince | World news | The Guardian

Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown!
 

Hillmanhunter1

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This is good news.

"Endeavor has returned its $400 million investment from the Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund.

Last year, the government-created fund was set to take a five to 10 percent stake in the rapidly diversifying media company, which originated via talent agency WME, but the October 2 death of Saudi Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi cast a pall over the kingdom's dealmaking in Hollywood. Khashoggi was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul Oct. 2, and according to intelligence officials he was brutally murdered and dismembered at the direction of the Saudi government.

Amid outcry and pressure to divest from all Saudi ties, The Hollywood Reporter exclusively reported Oct. 15 that Endeavor had begun the process of terminating its deal. The $400 million was ultimately returned in recent weeks
."

Endeavor Returns $400 Million Saudi Arabia Investment

William Morris Endeavor ("Endeavor") is a powerful Hollywood talent agency.
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Several Saudi Arabian women’s rights activists stood trial on Wednesday for the first time since a group of them were detained last year in a case that has intensified scrutiny of the kingdom’s human rights record after the murder of a prominent journalist.

Loujain al-Hathloul, Aziza al-Yousef, Eman al-Nafjan and Hatoon Al-Fassi were among around 10 women appearing before the criminal court in the capital, Riyadh, where charges would be presented against them, court president Ibrahim al Sayari said.

Activists say some of them, including Hathloul, were held in solitary confinement and subjected to mistreatment and torture, including electric shocks, flogging and sexual assault. Saudi officials have denied those allegations.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/13/saudi-womens-rights-activists-go-on-trial-in-Riyadh
 

Hillmanhunter1

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Senate passes resolution to end US support for Saudi war in Yemen

“The bottom line is that the United States should not be supporting a catastrophic war led by a despotic regime with an irresponsible foreign policy,” Sanders said on Wednesday from the Senate floor. He said a vote in favor of the measure would “begin the process of reclaiming our constitutional authority by ending United States involvement in a war that has not been authorized by Congress and is unconstitutional”.
 
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