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June 15, 2011

A Saudi bid to replace Syria's hypocrisy

June 15, 2011

June 15, 2011

We in the Middle East, especially in the Levant, are used to the Syrian talk on Palestine. Actually, we are used to the overdose of Palestine slogans by Syria's dictatorship. Year after year, we learned that they were all talk, and less, actually much less, action. Until recently, Rami Makhlouf, the Syrian dictator's cousin, said in an NYT interview what we all knew, “If there is no stability here, there’s no way there will be stability in Israel”. This has been the backbone of Syrian policy, lots of slogans on Palestine gives you street legitimacy and a reason to repress any internal dissent under the pretext that it is a "foreign conspiracy". Syria's stance has been exposed and the whole regime is under fire. But to my surprise, the Saudis are following suit. Recently, Turki Faisal, the former chief of Saudi intelligence, wrote an OPED threatening the U.S. and taking a hard stance on the Palestinian issue. I mean, who are you kidding? Saudi Arabia threatening the U.S., the protector of its absolute medieval monarchy? I think Saudi Arabia, and in light of the Arab spring, is taking steps to ensure a shift towards its population's views on foreign policy. Ofcourse, the Syrian example is there, give us lectures on the Palestinian cause, while guaranteeing stability and security for Israel. Only this would explain Saudi Arabia's new position.
To that, I say it doesn't really matter what your stance on Palestine is, what really matters are elections, free speech, and above all accountability, of which KSA has none. So spare me the hypocrisy!


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