What you must know about the U.S., Saudi Arabia, and I.S.I.S.

When I was growing up in eastern Virginia, my father was a private pilot and local commander of the Civil Air Defense (C.A.P) and we lived close to a large NASA facility. As a result, I met a lot of aerospace professionals and engineers. A significant percentage of them had worked in, or traveled, for whatever reason, to Saudi Arabia. At the time, this made almost no sense to me.

This was in the 1980's, when I was a teenager. When I went off to college, near Washington, D.C., I met more people who’d been to Saudi Arabia, and I heard, for the first time, the name of the world’s wealthiest corporation: Aramco, the Arabian-American Oil Company, now known as Saudi Aramco.

Did you know this corporation operates two private airports inside the United States? (the only private organization allowed by the FAA to own and operate its own airports)

The 2007 film, “the Kingdom” suggests that wealthy, private parties in Saudi Arabia finance terrorism while simultaneously appearing in public to cooperate with the U.S. investigation of said terrorism.

The film is a work of fiction, but recent news has brought an unfortunate and twisted real-life story: ISIS; the bogeyman of the moment for the U.S., undoubtedly grew initially with Saudi and Qatari support, and likely receives continuing private support from individuals in these countries.

The United States has immense vested financial interests, dating from the 1930's, in Saudi Aramco and helped establish its oil infrastructure. Perhaps that’s why Prince Bandar flies a Dallas Cowboys themed jet, and was often a regular locker room visitor at the team owned by oil magnate Jerry Jones.

Former Ambassador to the U.S., Bandar recently stepped down from his post as head of Saudi intelligence. It’s possible that ISIS began as a covert Saudi project under his direction:

ISIS, in fact, may have been a major part of Bandar’s covert-ops strategy in Syria. —Steve Clemons, the Atlantic

I’m reminded of another group in Afghanistan in the late 1970's and the early 1980's, the mujuhadeen that grew with American support (portrayed in the 2007 film “Charlie Wilson’s War”)

Few people are aware of negotiations between the U.S. and the pre-911 Taliban government over the proposed path of an oil and gas pipeline; these negotiations appear to have been monitored by Al-Qaeda.

From the incredibly insightful 2002 article in Salon by Jean-Charles Brisard:

The e-mail memo was found in 1998 on a computer seized by the FBI during its investigation into the 1998 African embassy bombings, which were sponsored by al-Qaida. Atef’s memo was discovered by FBI counter-terrorism expert John O’Neill, who left the bureau in 2001, complaining that U.S. oil interests were hindering his investigation into al-Qaida. O’Neill, who became security chief at the World Trade Center, died in the Sept. 11 attack.

The memo reveals frustration and intimidation by U.S. officials, namely Tom Simons, former U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan:

“Ambassador Simons stated that if the Taliban wouldn’t agree with the plan, and if Pakistan was unable to persuade them, the United States might use an overt action against Afghanistan,” Naik says. The words used by Simons were “a military operation,” according to Naik. Another participant reportedly said the Taliban’s choice was clear: either accept a “carpet of gold” riches from the pipeline or “a carpet of bombs,” meaning a military strike.

The pattern, is to find these things, together: Oil, Death, and Terrorism. Viewed through history’s lens, it’s been one disaster after another. Does anyone even remember the 1993 World Trade Center bombing or the 2000 naval bombing of the U.S.S. Cole? How about the elder Bush’s 1990 statement, “this will not be another Vietnam”? If Bush meant, “we won’t get into a 25-year cycle of chaos and conflict”, then he was horribly incorrect.

Viewed in this manner, the tragic and horrific events of 9/11 appear to be part of longer, larger pattern of conflict. If you’ll remember, Osama Bin Laden was not only a religious fanatic, he was also the son of a Saudi billionaire.

It’s in the economic self-interest of the Saudi oil industry to destabilize other oil-producing nations. This is simple supply and demand. Any gasoline-buying, middle-aged adult will testify to this: war in the Middle East means higher prices for Oil.

The information released from the Wikileaks security breach in 2010 revealed pressure applied by the Saudis for the United States to attack Iran:

The Saudi king was recorded as having “frequently exhorted the US to attack Iran to put an end to its nuclear weapons programme”, one cable stated. “He told you [Americans] to cut off the head of the snake,” the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Adel al-Jubeir said.

From Jeremy Scahill, author of Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield:

@jeremyscahill:
What would indicate Obama was serious about confronting ISIS? Confronting Saudi Arabia & Qatar.

In the non-fiction book, “The Next 100 Years”, author George Friedman, CEO of STRATFOR, a private intelligence firm, gives a possible explanation: the U.S. is not interested in stability in the Middle East, but rather blocking the dominance of any other world power in the region:

“Rhetoric aside, the United States has no overriding interest in peace… As with Vietnam or Korea, the purpose of these conflicts is simply to block a power or destabilize the region, not to impose order.”

The exception of course, is Saudi Arabia itself, with its oppressive government, public beheadings, and massive oil reserves, as well as historically significant infusions of American technology, personnel, capital and infrastructure. As a result; the United States military has become a de-facto police force serving Saudi regional interests.

“Yes, they are getting ready for another war. Why shouldn’t they? It pays high dividends. “ —Major General Smedley Butler, from ‘War is a Racket’, 1935
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