Friday, February 25, 2011

Saudi Arabia Next?

This article explains some of the reasons why Saudi Arabia could be the next domino to fall in the Middle East. It also talks about some of the problems Abdullah, the King of Saudi Arabia, faces with the revolt in Bahrain. Apparently, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain are close allies and King Abdullah is monitoring the siuation closely. If the Bahrainians do overthrow the Government, it is possible, according to the article, that Saudi Arabia would invade Bahrain to reinstate King Hamad. If that were to happen, it would almost certainly force Obama to show his cards.

1 comment:

Ryan Karerat said...

While Saudi Arabia could very well intervene militarily in Bahrain, I really think they would only do so as an absolute last resort. Doing so would be the worst thing they could do in terms of motivating a popular uprising in their country. Also, as unhappy as the Saudis might be with Obama right now, they're also terrified right now about growing Iranian influence, and are relying the U.S. as much as we are relying on them at the moment. The U.S. wants a peaceful resolution to this, but they are aligned with the Saudis and Bahrainis in that they do not want the resolution in Bahrain to be a rogue Shi'ite regime that will open up more of the Persian Gulf for Iran.

As far as Saudi goes, while a popular uprising is certainly possible, I'm not quite certain it's about to happen quite yet. The 'Day of Rage' is scheduled for March 11, a full two weeks in advance. Why so much later? I think it might be because the sprinkled opposition groups are saying with this is that moreso than actually wanting to overthrow the government, they just want the King to get his act together and continue with the reforms (municipal elections and such) that have been promised in the past that have stalled in the past couple of years.

The Saudis have the money to pump new welfare programs into the system for now (like they've started already) while getting back on the road to the reforms that had been promised in the past (probably accelerated).