December 10, 2019

ROBERT MCMANUS: After the Pensacola jihad, can we finally break with the Saudis?

But other things have changed over the past decade, as well, perhaps not the least being that America has all but achieved energy independence since then. It no longer must abase itself before Middle Eastern oil potentates, including, if not especially, the Saudis.

The whole mob has had inordinate influence in the West since the end of World War II and not just the West. Both Japan and China largely depend on the Mideast for oil, and that matters a lot.

As does stability in the Mideast. There is no need to be reckless.

But there is also no need to continue the pretense that Saudi Arabia is in any meaningful way capable of protecting itself from its regional enemies — a task America has undertaken to the tune of two conventional Mideast wars in the last 30 years and a special-operations oriented presence in Afghanistan that has persisted for almost two decades.

The training of Saudi military personnel is part of the charade, and while bringing an end to the practice would largely be symbolic, it also would be noticed.

More to the point is the need to inform Riyadh that America will no longer tolerate its long-standing and well-documented practice of funding Islamist radicals who agree to stay out of Saudi Arabia but who nevertheless work elsewhere to destabilize the West.


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