It has become an American ritual: kissing the Saudi King’s rear. We all know why. Saudi Arabia has the oil and America the thirst. That is why U.S. president show submissiveness toward the Saudis and that is why although the human rights records of Syria are heavily scrutinized the Saudi’s far worse behavior often goes without mention. It all comes down to money and lobbying clout. When an Arab nation plays the game, it is all of a sudden “moderate” and the United States could care less about how that nation abuses its people, but when a nation bucks U.S. policies in the region – as Syria has – it is a “rogue” state and the human rights violations all of a sudden are of great concern.
Image Source : biography
Let’s recap the American-Saudi friendship.
President Franklin Roosevelt was the first American leader to visit his Saudi counterpart. Roosevelt never stepped foot on Saudi soil, instead the Kingdom’s founding King Abdul Aziz stepped on board the USS Quincy off the coast of Egypt. The King entourage included goats. Presumably the goats were there to provide sexual amusement. It was in this meeting that the U.S.-Saudi oil relationship was established. To their credit, the Saudi King brought up Arab opposition to Zionism and Roosevelt assured him that a Jewish state would not come into being. Unfortunately, Roosevelt passed away in 1945 and the U.S. went on to recognize Israel in 1948.
Then came, after a few years, Bush Senior who established American military bases in the Kingdom after initially protecting Saudi Arabia from a possibly invasion by Saddam Hussein. The placement of bases had enormous consequences since it was the bases on Saudi soil – the same soil that houses Islam’s holiest sites of Mecca and Medina – that Ussama Bin Ladin cited as his number 1 contention.
What do these two have in common? They both have a problem with monogamy.
But of all the presidents none have been as affectionate to the Saudis than Bush. A tribute:
First the holding hands!
Then the delightful sword dance!
… and, finally, the kiss!
And now one has to give Obama some credit. He’s a quick learned. Look at him knell in from the of the King.