We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore LappĂ©, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Newly Translated WikiLeaks Saudi Cable: Overthrow the Syrian Regime, but Play Nice with Russia

Click here to access article by Brad Hoff from Levant Report. (updated on 2/26/2016)

What I don't understand from this leaked report is the fear expressed by the Saudi author about Syria's revenge against Saudi Arabia:
The fact must be stressed that in the case where the Syrian regime is able to pass through its current crisis in any shape or form, the primary goal that it will pursue is taking revenge on the countries that stood against it, with the Kingdom and some of the countries of the Gulf coming at the top of the list.
I have never come across any articles that would substantiate this fear of retaliation, so I must conclude that this is simply a rationalization to justify their desire to rid Syria of Assad's administration. Most likely what underlies their dedication to the removal of Assad was his opposition to proposed pipelines from Qatar to Europe through Syria. In 2012 Pepe Escobar has argued that this was the case. In 2014 F. William Engdahl provided evidence that the Saudis were likely encouraged by the US to undertake a campaign to promote "rebel" armies in Syria and even provided CIA support for this project. As Engdahl wrote in his article:
Washington neo-conservatives embedded inside the Obama Administration in a form of “Deep State” secret network, and their allied media such as the Washington Post, advocated US covert backing of a pet CIA project known as the Muslim Brotherhood. As I detail in my most recent book, Amerikas’ Heiliger Krieg, the CIA had cultivated ties to the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood death cult since the early 1950’s.

Now if we map the resources of known natural gas reserves in the entire Persian Gulf region, the motives of the Saudi-led Qatar and UAE in financing with billions of dollars the opposition to Assad, including the Sunni ISIS, becomes clearer. Natural gas has become the favored “clean energy” source for the 21st Century and the EU is the world’s largest growth market for gas, a major reason Washington wants to break the Gazprom-EU supply dependency to weaken Russia and keep control over the EU via loyal proxies like Qatar.
Thus, it is understandable that the Saudis are now furious with the US and its apparent abandonment of this destabilization plan.

[Update: see also this recent article by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. posted in Politico, which gives a considerable amount of the history of US interference in the oil rich countries of the Mid-East-- specially (p. 2) in reference to the pipelines that Saudi Arabia and Qatar wanted to transport their gas through Syria.]  

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