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Saudi dissident prince flies home to tackle MBS succession

Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz returns to Riyadh with UK and US security guarantees and a brief to cut the crown prince down to size.

The Duran

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Saudi dissident prince flies home to tackle MBS succession, via The Middle East Eye


Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz, the younger brother of King Salman, has returned to Saudi Arabia after a prolonged absence in London, to mount a challenge to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman or find someone who can.

The septuagenarian prince, an open critic of bin Salman (MBS), has travelled with security guarantees given by US and UK officials.

“He and others in the family have realised that MBS has become toxic,” a Saudi source close to Prince Ahmad told Middle East Eye.

“The prince wants to play a role to make these changes, which means either he himself will play a major role in any new arrangement or to help to choose an alternative to MBS.”

The source said that the prince returned “after discussion with US and UK officials”, who assured him they would not let him be harmed and encouraged him to play the role of usurper.

Apart from those western guarantees, Ahmad is also protected by his rank.

Last November, bin Salman conducted a sweeping purge of dissident royals, yet was not able to touch any sons of King Abdulaziz, the founder of the modern Saudi state, who are regarded as too senior a target for him.

Disquiet grows

The 33-year-old heir to the Saudi throne’s dominance in the kingdom has come under intense scrutiny following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi on 2 October, leading to speculation that he could be replaced.

MEE understands that while Prince Ahmad was in London he held meetings with other members of the Saudi royal family who are currently living outside the kingdom.

Prince Ahmad also consulted figures inside the kingdom who have similar concerns and have encouraged him to usurp his nephew.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has come under intense pressure. (Reuters)

MEE also understands there are three senior princes who support Prince Ahmad’s move, who cannot be named for fear of compromising their security. All have held top positions in the military and security forces.

Meanwhile, in Washington disquiet grows.

Writing in the New York Times, former national security advisor to the Obama administration and US ambassador to the UN Susan Rice said: “Looking ahead, Washington must act to mitigate the risks to our own interests. We should not rupture our important relationship with the kingdom, but we must make clear it cannot be business as usual so long as Prince Mohammed continues to wield unlimited power.

“It should be United States policy, in conjunction with our allies, to sideline the crown prince in order to increase pressure on the royal family to find a steadier replacement,” she added.

Turkish standoff

Prince Ahmad’s return will only increase the pressure on bin Salman, who is at the centre of a standoff between Saudi Arabia and Turkey after Khashoggi was murdered in his country’s consulate in Istanbul.

The Turkish authorities are demanding the Saudis tell them where Khashoggi’s body is, and the Saudis are insisting that Turkey hand over the audio tapes of the execution, details of which have routinely been leaked to the media.

In a thinly veiled attack on the crown prince, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday accused the Saudis of protecting the person responsible for the murder.

“A game to save somebody lies beneath this,” Erdogan told reporters following a speech in parliament on Tuesday. “We won’t leave Khashoggi’s murder behind.”

The Turkish president, who outlined some of the investigation into Khashoggi’s murder in an address last week, has promised to reveal more details about the killing but has so far refrained from doing so.

Saudi Arabia’s top prosecutor Saud al-Mojeb leaves his country’s consulate in Istanbul. (AP)

Saudi chief prosecutor Saud al-Mujeb has met Istanbul’s chief prosecutor Irfan Fidan twice in the last two days, but no progress has been reported.

The Saudis are continuing to refuse Turkish investigators access to the well in the grounds of the consul-general’s home, which is 500 metres from the consulate.

After first denying that Khashoggi had been murdered in the consulate, the Saudis now say they have arrested 18 suspects, 15 of which were members of a death squad sent to kill the prominent critic of the crown prince.

Bin Salman has repeatedly denied knowledge of the operation, which included five members of his personal security detail, three of whom accompanied him on high-profile trips to London, Washington and Paris.

On Monday Mujeb offered Fidan the suspects’ testimony. Turkey, though, demands their extradition, so they can stand trial and give evidence to a Turkish court. Saudi Arabia is refusing this.

On record

Before the Khashoggi affair, Prince Ahmad’s opposition to his nephew was a matter of public record. He has challenged him openly on three occasions:

First, in the summer of 2017, when the king’s brother was one of three members of the Allegiance Council, a body of senior royals tasked with choosing the succession, to oppose bin Salman’s appointment as crown prince.

Prince Ahmed pointedly did not give an oath of allegiance to his nephew when he was made King Salman’s heir.

Second, when Prince Ahmad and King Salman’s brother, Abdelrahman bin Abdulaziz, died last year. Only two pictures were hung at the reception given by Prince Ahmad, that of King Abdulaziz and the current monarch. The crown prince’s portrait was notably missing.

Third, last month, when Prince Ahmad approached Yemeni and Bahraini protesters outside his London home who were calling the al-Sauds a criminal family.

He told them the family as a whole does not bear responsibility for the war in Yemen, only the king and crown prince do.

“They are responsible for crimes in Yemen. Tell Mohammed bin Salman to stop the war,” Prince Ahmad was recorded as telling them in Arabic.

Fraught with risk

Prince Ahmad’s return to Riyadh is fraught with risk.

He is believed to have the support of significant figures in the family who now believe after the Khashoggi affair that the crown prince is permanently tainted in the West and toxic to the reputation of the family as a whole.

A Saudi dissident prince in Germany, Prince Khaled bin Farhan, told MEE in May that princes Ahmad and Muqrin bin Abdulaziz could both restore the reputation of the family, which has been destroyed by King Salman’s “irrational, erratic and stupid” rule.

“There is so much anger within the royal family,” Prince Khaled said. “I took this information and appealed to my uncles Ahmad and Muqrin, who are the sons of Abdulaziz and are highly educated, well versed and able to change things for the better. I can say that we are all behind them and support them.”

Prince Farhan speaking to Middle East Eye in May. (MEE)

Among other Saudi exiles in London and Istanbul opinions differ. Some call Prince Ahmad too weak a figure to wrought change in the kingdom.

Others say that he has personal motives for wanting to see the back of bin Salman, having been passed over for the position of crown prince himself.

The key question is whether he will be able to perform the same role as King Faisal, who ousted his brother Saoud in the only previous family coup in 1964.

If all fails, however, Prince Ahmad could find himself fitting another historic parallel: Ahmed Shafik’s attempt to oust Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in March’s election.

Shafik, seen as Sisi’s most serious challenger, was encouraged to return to Egypt after a period of exile in Dubai.

Yet on his return he was disowned by fellow generals in the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, and forced to abandon the presidential challenge.

Significantly Sisi did not attend the latest investment conference in Riyadh, the so-called “Davos in the Desert”, despite an invitation by MBS to do so.

 

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SteveShaun RameweTheCelotajsYou can call me ALVivian Tzamis Recent comment authors
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Fred
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Fred

Wow….a coup…regime change

You can call me AL
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You can call me AL

Yes and no, same family, just a different POS.

Normski
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Normski

Send me the money and I’ll be quite happy to advise the Saudi regime on the best way forward from here. And, I’ll do a better job than Tony Blair for a fraction of the cost!.

You can call me AL
Guest
You can call me AL

Normski…please accept this offer to be the new ME peace envoy, plus vermin satanist to the Saudi hierarchy. Your payment will be a zillion pounds only on exchange of heart, other organs, any children and wives. may I suggest you also buy the most expensive and best fire proof clothing for you afterlife.

Vivian Tzamis
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Vivian Tzamis

All theatre… Turkey & the Globalists putting on a show to distract the public…. Turkey has been the nexus of political assassination for centuries… they just opened a mega-airport… for the massive plundering of Central Asia.. the Middle East has played out… the Globalist Mafia has moved into Central Asia and of course Africa…One Belt…One Road…One Big Happy Mafia Family

TheCelotajs
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TheCelotajs

The best thing that could happen to Saudi Arabia is turn it in to glass.

Shaun Ramewe
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Shaun Ramewe

Glass is too civilized!!

Shaun Ramewe
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Shaun Ramewe

More ZioWestern political meddling – install yet another sicko-liar coward-pervert again hey!!

Steve
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Steve

Dead Man walking

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US media suffers panic attack after Mueller fails to deliver on much-anticipated Trump indictment

Internet mogul Kim Dotcom said it all: “Mueller – The name that ended all mainstream media credibility.”

RT

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Via RT


Important pundits and news networks have served up an impressive display of denials, evasions and on-air strokes after learning that Robert Mueller has ended his probe without issuing a single collusion-related indictment.

The Special Counsel delivered his final report to Attorney General William Barr for review on Friday, with the Justice Department confirming that there will be no further indictments related to the probe. The news dealt a devastating blow to the sensational prophesies of journalists, analysts and entire news networks, who for nearly two years reported ad nauseam that President Donald Trump and his inner circle were just days away from being carted off to prison for conspiring with the Kremlin to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.

Showing true integrity, journalists and television anchors took to Twitter and the airwaves on Friday night to acknowledge that the media severely misreported Donald Trump’s alleged ties to Russia, as well as what Mueller’s probe was likely to find. They are, after all, true professionals.

“How could they let Trump off the hook?” an inconsolable Chris Matthews asked NBC reporter Ken Dilanian during a segment on CNN’s ‘Hardball’.

Dilanian tried to comfort the CNN host with some of his signature NBC punditry.

“My only conclusion is that the president transmitted to Mueller that he would take the Fifth. He would never talk to him and therefore, Mueller decided it wasn’t worth the subpoena fight,” he expertly mused.

Actually, there were several Serious Journalists who used their unsurpassed analytical abilities to conjure up a reason why Mueller didn’t throw the book at Trump, even though the president is clearly a Putin puppet.

“It’s certainly possible that Trump may emerge from this better than many anticipated. However! Consensus has been that Mueller would follow DOJ rules and not indict a sitting president. I.e. it’s also possible his report could be very bad for Trump, despite ‘no more indictments,'” concluded Mark Follman, national affairs editor at Mother Jones, who presumably, and very sadly, was not being facetious.

Revered news organs were quick to artfully modify their expectations regarding Mueller’s findings.

“What is collusion and why is Robert Mueller unlikely to mention it in his report on Trump and Russia?” a Newsweek headline asked following Friday’s tragic announcement.

Three months earlier, Newsweek had meticulously documented all the terrible “collusion” committed by Donald Trump and his inner circle.

But perhaps the most sobering reactions to the no-indictment news came from those who seemed completely unfazed by the fact that Mueller’s investigation, aimed at uncovering a criminal conspiracy between Trump and the Kremlin, ended without digging up a single case of “collusion.”

The denials, evasions and bizarre hot takes are made even more poignant by the fact that just days ago, there was still serious talk about Trump’s entire family being hauled off to prison.

“You can’t blame MSNBC viewers for being confused. They largely kept dissenters from their Trump/Russia spy tale off the air for 2 years. As recently as 2 weeks ago, they had @JohnBrennan strongly suggesting Mueller would indict Trump family members on collusion as his last act,” journalist Glenn Greenwald tweeted.

While the Mueller report has yet to be released to the public, the lack of indictments makes it clear that whatever was found, nothing came close to the vast criminal conspiracy alleged by virtually the entire American media establishment.

“You have been lied to for 2 years by the MSM. No Russian collusion by Trump or anyone else. Who lied? Head of the CIA, NSA,FBI,DOJ, every pundit every anchor. All lies,” wrote conservative activist Chuck Woolery.

Internet mogul Kim Dotcom was more blunt, but said it all: “Mueller – The name that ended all mainstream media credibility.”

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Canadian Lawmaker Accuses Trudeau Of Being A “Fake Feminist” (Video)

Rempel segued to Trudeau’s push to quash an investigation into allegations that he once groped a young journalist early in his political career

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Via Zerohedge

Canada’s feminist-in-chief Justin Trudeau wants to support and empower women…but his support stops at the point where said women start creating problems for his political agenda.

That was the criticism levied against the prime minister on Friday by a conservative lawmaker, who took the PM to task for “muzzling strong, principled women” during a debate in the House of Commons.

“He asked for strong women, and this is what they look like!” said conservative MP Michelle Rempel, referring to the former justice minister and attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould, who has accused Trudeau and his cronies of pushing her out of the cabinet after she refused to grant a deferred prosecution agreement to a Quebec-based engineering firm.

She then accused Trudeau of being a “fake feminist”.

“That’s not what a feminist looks like…Every day that he refuses to allow the attorney general to testify and tell her story is another day he’s a fake feminist!”

Trudeau was so taken aback by Rempel’s tirade, that he apparently forgot which language he should respond in.

But Rempel wasn’t finished. She then segued to Trudeau’s push to quash an investigation into allegations that he once groped a young journalist early in his political career. This from a man who once objected to the continued use of the word “mankind” (suggesting we use “peoplekind” instead).

The conservative opposition then tried to summon Wilson-Raybould to appear before the Commons for another hearing (during her last appearance, she shared her account of how the PM and employees in the PM’s office and privy council barraged her with demands that she quash the government’s pursuit of SNC-Lavalin over charges that the firm bribed Libyan government officials). Wilson-Raybould left the Trudeau cabinet after she was abruptly moved to a different ministerial post – a move that was widely seen as a demotion.

Trudeau has acknowledged that he put in a good word on the firm’s behalf with Wilson-Raybould, but insists that he always maintained the final decision on the case was hers and hers alone.

Fortunately for Canadians who agree with Rempel, it’s very possible that Trudeau – who has so far resisted calls to resign – won’t be in power much longer, as the scandal has cost Trudeau’s liberals the lead in the polls for the October election.

 

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Why Joe May be Courting Stacey

Joe Biden has a history on compulsory integration dating back to the 1970s that Sen. Jesse Helms called “enlightened.”

Patrick J. Buchanan

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Authored by Patrick Buchanan via The Unz Review:


Of 895 slots in the freshman class of Stuyvesant High in New York City, seven were offered this year to black students, down from 10 last year and 13 the year before.

In the freshman class of 803 at The Bronx High School of Science, 12 students are black, down from last year’s 25.

Of 303 students admitted to Staten Island Technical High School, one is African-American.

According to The New York Times, similar patterns of admission apply at the other five most elite high schools in the city.

Whites and Asians are 30 percent of middle school students, but 83 percent of the freshman at Bronx High School of Science, 88 percent at Staten Island Technical and 90 percent at Stuyvesant.

What do these numbers tell us?

They reveal the racial composition of the cohort of scientists and technicians who will lead America in the 21st century. And they tell us which races will not be well represented in that vanguard.

They identify a fault line that runs through the Democratic Party, separating leftists who believe in equality of results for all races and ethnic groups, and those who believe in a meritocracy.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has expressed anger and frustration at the under-representation of blacks and Hispanics in the elite schools. But Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state legislature have ignored his pleas to change the way students are admitted.

Currently, the same test, of English and math, is given to middle school applicants. And admission to the elite eight is offered to those who get the highest scores.

Moreover, Asians, not whites, are predominant.

Though 15 percent of all middle school students, Asians make up two-thirds of the student body at Stuyvesant, with 80 times as many slots as their African-American classmates.

The egalitarian wing of the Democratic Party sees this as inherently unjust. And what gives this issue national import are these factors:

First, the recent scandal where rich parents paid huge bribes to criminal consultants to get their kids into elite colleges, by falsifying records of athletic achievement and cheating on Scholastic Aptitude Tests, has caused a wave of populist resentment.

Second, Harvard is being sued for systemic reverse racism, as black and Hispanic students are admitted with test scores hundreds of points below those that would disqualify Asians and whites.

Third, Joe Biden has a history on compulsory integration dating back to the 1970s that Sen. Jesse Helms called “enlightened.”

Here are Biden’s quotes, unearthed by The Washington Post, that reflect his beliefs about forced busing for racial balance in public schools:

“The new integration plans being offered are really just quota systems to assure a certain number of blacks, Chicanos, or whatever in each school. That, to me, is the most racist concept you can come up with.

“What it says is, ‘In order for your child with curly black hair, brown eyes, and dark skin to be able to learn anything, he needs to sit next to my blond-haired, blue-eyed son.’ That’s racist!

“Who the hell do we think we are, that the only way a black man or woman can learn is if they rub shoulders with my white child?

“I am philosophically opposed to quota systems. They insure mediocrity.”

That was 44 years ago. While those views were the thinking of many Democrats, and perhaps of most Americans, in the mid-’70s, they will be problematic in the 2020 primaries, where African-Americans could be decisive in the contests that follow Iowa and New Hampshire.

Biden knows that just as Bernie Sanders, another white male, fell short in crucial South Carolina because of a lack of support among black voters, he, too, has a problem with that most loyal element in the Democratic coalition.

In 1991, Biden failed to rise to the defense of Anita Hill when she charged future Justice Clarence Thomas with sexual harassment. In the Senate Judiciary Committee, he was a law-and-order champion responsible for tough anti-crime legislation that is now regarded as discriminatory.

And he has a record on busing for racial balance that made him a de facto ally of Louise Day Hicks of the Boston busing case fame.

How, with a record like this, does Biden inoculate himself against attacks by rival candidates, especially candidates of color, in his run for the nomination?

One way would be to signal to his party that he has grown, he has changed, and his 2020 running mate will be a person of color. Perhaps he’ll run with a woman of color such as Stacey Abrams, who narrowly lost the 2018 governor’s race in Georgia.

An ancillary benefit would be that Abrams on the ticket would help him carry Georgia, a state Donald Trump probably cannot lose and win re-election.

Wrote Axios this morning:

“Close advisers to former Vice President Joe Biden are debating the idea of packaging his presidential campaign announcement with a pledge to choose Stacey Abrams as his vice president.”


Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

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