As I outlined in detail earlier today, I’m no fan of Washington’s Mid-East policy.
On of the things I find most disturbing is America’s seemingly unwavering support (one canceled Raytheon contract notwithstanding) for the regime in Saudi Arabia which adheres to and vociferously promotes the same brand of puritanical Sunni Islam as that championed by ISIS and al-Qaeda. And yet King Salman gets the royal treatment (both figuratively and literally) when he comes to Washington D.C.
Although Riyadh could certainly do without ISIS running about drawing attention to the more barbaric tenants of Wahhabism, the kingdom is nonetheless happy to support the Sunni cause in Syria – and that means arming the “moderate” opposition.
While I’ve been keen on pointing out how the Russians and Iranians (with the help of Hezbollah and Shiite militias loyal to notorious Quds commander Qassem Soleimani) have made an already bad situation worse by laying siege to rebel held areas of Aleppo, the rebels that receive arms and funding from the Gulf monarchies, from Turkey, and from the United States are no saints either. Indeed, they’ve played a large role in causing the very misery that their family members bemoan on social media.
That’s why I find it highly amusing (in a morbid kind of way) that Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has now created a charity for Syrian refugees. From Bloomberg:
King Salman ordered a donation campaign across kingdom to aid the Syrian people, especially refugees from Aleppo, state-run SPA reports, citing a royal decree.
- King Salman began the campaign by donating 20m riyals,
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef donated 10m and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman donated 8m, according to decree
Great. So SAR30 million.
I wonder how that compares to the amount the kingdom spent on weapons shipments to the rebels.