by Editor (Editorials, Crescent International Vol. 46, No. 4, Ramadan, 1438)
Saudi Deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Mohammad bin Salman has finally found a real daddy in Donald Trump. Despite their age difference — bin Salman is barely 31 and Trump is past 70 — they are both warmongering bullies. They are also narcissists insisting they never make mistakes. If things go wrong, it is someone else’s fault.
Ignorant men who wield great power are extremely dangerous. It is like handing a loaded gun to a monkey: it will either blow its own brains out or someone else’s. While Trump won an election of sorts in the US amid allegations of manipulation, in the Bedouin kingdom of bin Salman, calling for elections is a one-way ticket to the chopping bloc. He owes his position entirely to the fact that his father is king. And in the medieval Kingdom that claims its constitution is based on the Qur’an and the Prophet’s (pbuh) Sunnah, power passes from one brother to the next. What ayah of the Qur’an or what hadith sanctions this? With the older generation of Bani Saud shuffling to its grave, the new generation is jockeying for influence to grab power. The numerous wars bin Salman has launched — Syria, Iraq, Yemen, etc. — and the new ones he wants to launch against such regional powers as Islamic Iran are meant to burnish his credentials. Instead, they are likely to bring an end to the decrepit kingdom in the Arabian Peninsula. This, however, has not constrained the ill-informed and ill-mannered young prince from barging into dangerous territory.
He has issued public threats against Islamic Iran even while the latter calls for dialogue. On May 2, for instance, in a long and rambling interview with fawning panelists at Saudi-funded al-Arabiya TV channel and al-Akhbariya TV, bin Salman said, “We will not wait until the battle is in Saudi Arabia, but we will work so the battle is there in Iran.” And how will the warrior prince achieve this with the Saudis’ legendry incompetence? By unleashing the sectarian terrorists that are churned out of Saudi-funded madrasahs in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and as far afield as Malaysia and Indonesia.
The sectarian terrorists use different names: al-Qaeda, Da‘ish (ISIS/ISIL), Ahrar al-Sham, Jaysh al-Fath, Jaysh al-‘Adl and whatever other “Jaysh al-” label you want to use (fill in the blanks). Their minds poisoned by Wahhabi obscurantism, these terrorists have been unleashed in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and on the borders with Iran (Sistan-Baluchistan bordering the Pakistani province of Baluchistan). It is revealing that these terrorists have not fired a single shot against the Zionist occupiers of Palestine. Their wrath is reserved exclusively for Muslims. The reason is simple: for the Saudis, Zionist Jews are their “cousins” (Adel al-Jubeir, September 2015) while Shi‘i Muslims are kafirs and, therefore, deserve to die!
The warrior prince, however, knows the limits of the Saudis’ fighting prowess, or lack thereof. Despite his boast that the war in Yemen is all but won, he admits finishing off the other side will be costly. “Thousands of our troops can fall victims. There will be funerals in all Saudi cities.” So what does he propose to do to win the war? Starve the Yemenis, use Da‘ish and al-Qaeda terrorists and get US-Zionist help to fight Ansarallah fighters and force them to surrender.
The much-awaited surrender has not occurred in more than two years of Saudi bombing of Yemen. Instead, Ansarallah fighters have expanded their reach and taken the war into Saudi Arabia. In Tehran, meanwhile, bin Salman’s threat has evoked a strong reaction from Iran’s Defence Minister, General Hossein Dehghan. In an interview with the Arabic language television channel al-Manar on May 7, General Dehghan warned, “If the Saudis do anything ignorant, we will leave no area untouched except Makkah and Madinah.” He went on, “They [the Saudis] think they can do something because they have an air force,” in an apparent reference to Saudi attacks on Yemen where they have destroyed civilian infrastructure killing thousands of innocent Yemeni civilians. Iran, he warned, was capable of hitting every part of Saudi Arabia.
That explains why the ignorant prince has sought US-Israeli help in his provocative war with Iran. Since 2011, the Saudis have failed in their political and military objectives in Syria and Iraq and have had no success in Yemen despite bombing the dirt-poor country since March 2015. The imperialists and Zionists have also been involved in all these places.
But given the mindset of the two men — Trump and bin Salman — they will refuse to learn from history. In fact, they refuse to learn, period! If they dare unleash a war against Islamic Iran, the chances are, there will be no Saudi kingdom left. The Najdi Bedouins will be driven back to their tents in Dir‘iyah to drink polluted water and survive on camel milk and dates. The Muslim world will heave a collective sigh of relief when that happens.