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SYRIZA hypocrisy again exposed as open borders bonanza continues

Over 3,000 residents of the island of Lesvos, which has been inundated with migrants, protested the current state of the island during the recent visit of prime minister Alexis Tsipras. But for SYRIZA, any opposition equates with fascism.

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Just days after a major protest in the island of Lesvos opposing the occupation of the main square of the island’s capital, Mitilini, by over 200 illegal migrants, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras—who once demonstrated that his geography skills are akin to his English-language skills by referring to Lesvos and Mitilini as separate islands—paid a visit to the island for an absurd propaganda speech as part of the 14th North Aegean Regional Conference.

The protests

Protesters attempt to overturn riot police buses while demonstrating against the visit of the prime minister of Greece Alexis Tsipras to Mitilini, the capital of the island of Lesvos, May 3, 2018 (Orestes Panagiotou, APA-MPA).

As Tsipras spoke at the conference, an estimated 3,000 residents of the island of Lesvos protested outside, said to be the largest protest in the island’s history. Protesters attempted to burst past a barricade consisting of 17 riot police buses—the same riot police which Tsipras and company had pledged to abolish prior to their ascent to power in January 2015—to issue a resolution to the prime minister. Some protesters rocked the riot police buses, attempting to topple them.

Among the complaints of the protesters is the elimination of the reduced value-added tax (VAT) rate for Lesvos and other islands—which SYRIZA had once pledged to protect and maintain and which had been put in place to alleviate the cost of shipping necessary goods to far-flung islands—while shops on the island were shuttered in protest of the tax increase. Perhaps even more so, the protests also concerned the daily problems and declining quality of life which the island’s residents face as a result of the migrant influx. Lesvos has, for years been at the front lines of the inflow of migrants, supposedly refugees from Syria, but many of whom—mostly unaccompanied young men—hail from other countries of the Middle East, Asia, and even Africa and… Latin America.

The mayor of Lesvos Spyros Galinos ended up being the one to issue the protesters’ statement to Tsipras. Nevertheless, the demonstrations turned chaotic on at least two occasions, when protesters attempted to break the riot police barricade.

Galinos, speaking to The Guardian, stated: “The people of Lesvos are exhausted. The rhythm of our lives has been shattered by refugees and migrants who now number a third of our population… fear prevails. Women are afraid to leave their homes at night, children are kept locked up indoors because parents are afraid to let them go out and play. No community would put up with this.”

It’s a wonder that Galinos wasn’t immediately branded a hardcore fascist by the open borders-supporting PC police at The Guardian, especially following his statements about women and children on the island and fear prevailing.

SYRIZA’s hypocrisy on display once again

Tsipras, oblivious to everything, filled his speech with talk about “growth” and Greece’s supposed forthcoming “exit” from the “bailout” (loan) agreements.

“When President Juncker speaks of a clean exit from the bailout program in the summer of 2018, when the head of the OECD speaks about the feat of the Greek people and of a country that is leading the way in reforms, what point is there to waste time on pointless disagreements?”

Come again? President Juncker? President of what? It seems Tsipras let the EU surpa-state cat out of the bag unwittingly with this statement.

Tsipras then made lofty claims of eliminating waste in the public health care system, even as his own government has offered patronage plum positions to SYRIZA hacks, such as a tire shop owner being appointed vice president of the public hospital of Santorini. Tsipras then went on a rant against Greece’s oligarchs, which SYRIZA has continuously described as their enemy, as part of the party’s “us versus the world” propaganda. Tsipras stated:

“No matter how many powers one gathers [against us], no matter how many entrenched financial interests, publishing groups and non-governmental power centers, no matter how much black propaganda and fake news [you just knew this would be referenced, following the proud example of Tsipras’ neoliberal bosses in the EU and the United States], reality does not change.”

Reality may not change, but Tsipras did not clarify whether SYRIZA’s reality is the same as that of the majority of the people of Greece. And as Tsipras went on this rant against “black propaganda” and “fake news” and bad oligarchs, his government issued, just last week, five nationwide television licenses to incumbent stations owned by those very oligarchs. Viva la revolucion!

Tsipras then added, referring to the protests regarding the recent migrant occupation of Sappho Square:

“We will not tolerate the murderous, aggressive actions against the refugees, and phenomena such as those of this past Sunday.”

In other words, Tsipras once again uttered the only thing that SYRIZA knows how to express: an “us versus them” mentality, where it is SYRIZA standing alone fighting against some unspecified, dark, “fascist” threat. This plays in to historical divides between the left and right in Greece, dating back to the Greek civil war of 1947-1949 and the military junta which ruled Greece between 1967 and 1974.

Further evidence of this is evident right in Tsipras’ speech, as he attempted to manipulate the emotions of the people of Lesvos and the entire nation, stating:

“The flag of our country was raised high on this land by the grandfathers and grandmothers of many residents of this island, when they arrived here in boats as refugees from Smyrna [and elsewhere] to rebuild their lives, stand on their feet again, and reunite with their lost relatives. The flag of our nation was again raised high by the men and women of EAM [Greek wartime resistance movement against the Nazis] who led the way in the liberation of Lesvos from Nazism.”

What the Smyrna catastrophe of 1922 and the anti-Nazi liberation movement has to do with protesting an out-of-control influx of migrants is something that only Tsipras and other members of SYRIZA can (attempt to) answer. It is clear though that by throwing out the same old buzzwords regarding “fighting fascism” and attempting to draw parallels between the culturally Greek refugees who were forced to flee Asia Minor in 1922 and the so-called “refugees” blowing in to Greece today, Tsipras and other members of SYRIZA are attempting to manipulate emotions and to stifle any dissent, pre-emptively labeling any opponents of mass migration as fascists and racists.

If this seems far-fetched, consider the statements made immediately after Tsipras’ visit to Lesvos by SYRIZA MP Giorgos Pallis, who represents the island of Lesvos, calling the protesters “a small minority of fascists” in a speech before parliament (see video here).

Recently, SYRIZA government ministers even went as far as drawing parallels between residents who choose to defend themselves and their homes from burglars, and “far-right terrorists.”

So for SYRIZA, anyone who disagrees with their politics and with the inflow of so many “refugees” that as much as one-third of the population of the Lesvos now consists of migrants, is a fascist. How very leftist and tolerant!

It is also quite ironic that Tsipras will reference the raising of the Greek flag on the soil of Lesvos by the Greek refugees of Asia Minor in 1922 and by the resistance fighters of EAM during World War II, when it was SYRIZA’s own MP, Dimitris Vettas, speaking on the oligarch-owned and full-on neoliberal radio station Skai 100.3, who described the raising of the Greek flag on uninhabited Aegean islands which Turkey has repeatedly claimed and encroached upon, as “shameful.”

For SYRIZA, patriotism comes a la carte: it is good when it can score SYRIZA cheap political points, but it is fascist if it is used to oppose any of the policies of SYRIZA or, by extension, the EU and the troika.

As stated by Dimitris Karagiannis, President of the Lesvos Agricultural Association:

“How can he [Tsipras] talk about growth, when we are facing this huge migrant problem? They have thousands of refugees and migrants trapped and exhausted here, who are also creating problems for the local community. How can we talk about growth, when Turkish aggression is rising daily?”

Migrant free-for-all in the Aegean

While Tsipras and SYRIZA fling accusations of “fascism” towards any and all who disagree, the migrant influx in the Eastern Aegean continues unabated, despite an EU deal with Turkey which essentially bribes Turkish sultan Tayyip Erdogan in return for, supposedly, stemming the migrant flow towards Europe. The money continues to flow to Erdogan so he can build lavish palaces for himself, but the migrants continue to flow towards Greece and into Europe as well.

One recent report speaks of 350 new migrant arrivals on the islands of Lesvos and Chios in one day earlier this month. Also recently, 223 migrants arrived on Lesvos in one day, traveling on four boats. And just in the month of April, approximately 4,000 migrants entered the northern Greek region of Evros, which neighbors Turkey. It is in Evros where the government is now planning on constructing a new migrant registration and detention center.

As early as 2015, 90,000 migrants had passed through Lesvos — an island with a population of 85,000.

The Greek “justice” system, which the government is supposedly at war with but which never overtly issues decisions that would alter the neoliberal, pro-austerity, open borders status quo, has also gotten into the act. In an April decision by the Council of State, Greece’s highest administrative court, new migrants will be able to reside in any region of Greece that they choose and will be able to move around the country freely.

The five NGO workers, three Spaniards and two Danes, acquitted on charges of human smuggling by a court on the island of Lesvos.

In another recent decision, a court on the island of Lesvos acquitted five foreigners—three Spaniards and two Danes—who were employed by NGOs, for helping smuggle “refugees” into Greece. Representatives of every Spanish political party were said to have attended the trial, Amnesty International condemned the charges against the men, while the interior minister of the Spanish region of Andalucia and the aforementioned SYRIZA MP Giorgos Pallis testified in their defense – despite recommendations by prosecutors that the five men be found guilty. What does this decision, and the “solidarity” the five men enjoyed by Greek and Spanish politicians, tell you?

“Opposition” politicians can also play this game, as evidenced by the case of PASOK’s Thanassis Chimonas, who in a post on Facebook which can no longer be located, called the parents of a school on the island of Chios who “expressed their reservations” about allowing migrant children to attend the school “morons” and their children “bastards.” It’s no wonder SYRIZA and the “new” PASOK are said to be warming to each other recently, eyeing a possible electoral collaboration. Tolerance above all.

The free-for-all, of course, has impacts beyond just Greece’s borders. Illustrating the ease with which a migrant can receive counterfeit official papers, an Albanian woman was recently arrested in Great Britain, who had used a fake Greek identification card to get a £72,000 kidney transplant. Looking at the issue on a global scale, backers of the “open borders” regime recently created a mobile app allowing undocumented migrants to evade federal officials in the United States.

Tension in the Aegean continues

As the Eastern Aegean continues to enjoy the apparent benefits of open borders, tensions with neighboring Turkey have continued. Turkish violations of Greek airspace and maritime waters are a daily reality, and in a recent incident, a Turkish cargo shipped rammed into a Greek warship near Lesvos. This comes just two months after a Turkish military vessel slammed into and damaged a Greek coast guard boat in the Aegean. The Turks also recently claimed that they removed a Greek flag from one of the aforementioned uninhabited islets in the Aegean. Efforts of islanders to place Greek flags on these small islands were the ones Vettas described as “shameful,” though he did not clarify whether Turkish flags, or better yet, EU flags would be preferable.

And while Turkey continues to indefinitely detain two Greek soliders who were captured near the border in the region of Evros, Greek “justice” minister Stavros Kontonis—a dead ringer for President Snow from The Hunger Games and with approximately the same moral compass—rushed to release two Turks captured in the port of Kyllini, just days after another Turkish citizen captured in the Evros region was also released.

On the left, President Snow of the Hunger Games. On the right, Greek justice minister Stavros Kontonis. Can you tell them apart?

It is this same Kontonis, who once “talked tough” against specific oligarchs and football team owners unfavorable to SYRIZA (read: Evaggelos Marinakis of Olympiacos) and threatened to allow “Grexit” (of Greek football teams from international competition, of course, not a Greek departure from the Eurozone, oh noes!) in order to “clean up” football (as exemplified by the pro-SYRIZA gun-toting oligarch Ivan Savvidis). The same Kontonis who recently granted clemency to a convicted drug trafficker and waived his 50,000 euro fine and ten-year prison sentence, allowing him to work in the public or private sector, continue his doctoral studies, and to receive a visa to live abroad. The same Kontonis who is rumored to have such a violent temper (just as long as it isn’t against favorable oligarchs, migrants, or drug dealers) that he sent his mother to the hospital, not once but three times.

Pushback against SYRIZA continues

Opposition continues to grow against an increasingly out-of-control SYRIZA government which is pushing open borders at all costs, while its stance on national issues ranges from apparent inaction (in the case of the Greek soldiers detained in Turkey or the increased aggression of Turkey in the Aegean) to utter treason (through SYRIZA’s “negotiations” with FYROM, where the government is practically begging FYROM to accept the name Macedonia in some form).

In a recent public opinion survey, conducted in April, 54 percent of respondents in Greeks stated their belief that the government’s handles relations with Turkey “wrongly” or “rather wrongly.” And during May Day commemorations in the city of Halkida, organizers demanded that a SYRIZA MP in attendance leave.

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Foreign Banks Are Embracing Russia’s Alternative To SWIFT, Moscow Says

Given its status as a major energy exporter, Russia has leverage that could help attract partners to its new SWIFT alternative.

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Via Zerohedge


On Friday, one day after Russia and China pledged to reduce their reliance on the dollar by increasing the amount of bilateral trade conducted in rubles and yuan (a goal toward which much progress has already been made over the past three years), Russia’s Central Bank provided the latest update on Moscow’s alternative to US-dominated international payments network SWIFT.

Moscow started working on the project back in 2014, when international sanctions over Russia’s annexation of Crimea inspired fears that the country’s largest banks would soon be cut off from SWIFT which, though it’s based in Belgium and claims to be politically neutral, is effectively controlled by the US Treasury.

Today, the Russian alternative, known as the System for Transfer of Financial Messages, has attracted a modest amount of support within the Russian business community, with 416 Russian companies having joined as of September, including the Russian Federal Treasury and large state corporations likeGazprom Neft and Rosneft.

And now, eight months after a senior Russian official advised that “our banks are ready to turn off SWIFT,” it appears the system has reached another milestone in its development: It’s ready to take on international partners in the quest to de-dollarize and end the US’s leverage over the international financial system. A Russian official advised that non-residents will begin joining the system “this year,” according to RT.

“Non-residents will start connecting to us this year. People are already turning to us,”said First Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Russia Olga Skorobogatova. Earlier, the official said that by using the alternative payment system foreign firms would be able to do business with sanctioned Russian companies.

Turkey, China, India and others are among the countries that might be interested in a SWIFT alternative, as Russian President Vladimir Putin pointed out in a speech earlier this month, the US’s willingness to blithely sanction countries from Iran to Venezuela and beyond will eventually rebound on the US economy by undermining the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency.

To be sure, the Russians aren’t the only ones building a SWIFT alternative to help avoid US sanctions. Russia and China, along with the European Union are launching an interbank payments network known as the Special Purpose Vehicle to help companies pursue “legitimate business with Iran” in defiance of US sanctions.

Given its status as a major energy exporter, Russia has leverage that could help attract partners to its new SWIFT alternative. For one, much of Europe is dependent on Russian natural gas and oil.

And as Russian trade with other US rivals increases, Moscow’s payments network will look increasingly attractive,particularly if buyers of Russian crude have no other alternatives to pay for their goods.

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US leaving INF will put nuclear non-proliferation at risk & may lead to ‘complete chaos’

The US is pulling out of a nuclear missile pact with Russia. The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty requires both countries to eliminate their short and medium-range atomic missiles.

The Duran

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Via RT


If the US ditches the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), it could collapse the entire nuclear non-proliferation system, and bring nuclear war even closer, Russian officials warn.

By ending the INF, Washington risks creating a domino effect which could endanger other landmark deals like the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) and collapse the existing non-proliferation mechanism as we know it, senior lawmaker Konstantin Kosachev said on Sunday.

The current iteration of the START treaty, which limits the deployment of all types of nuclear weapons, is due to expire in 2021. Kosachev, who chairs the Parliament’s Upper House Foreign Affairs Committee, warned that such an outcome pits mankind against “complete chaos in terms of nuclear weapons.”

“Now the US Western allies face a choice: either embarking on the same path, possibly leading to new war, or siding with common sense, at least for the sake of their self-preservation instinct.”

His remarks came after US President Donald Trump announced his intentions to “terminate” the INF, citing alleged violations of the deal by Russia.

Moscow has repeatedly denied undermining the treaty, pointing out that Trump has failed to produce any evidence of violations. Moreover, Russian officials insist that the deployment of US-made Mk 41 ground-based universal launching systems in Europe actually violates the agreement since the launchers are capable of firing mid-range cruise missiles.

Leonid Slutsky, who leads the Foreign Affairs Committee in parliament’s lower chamber, argued that Trump’s words are akin to placing “a huge mine under the whole disarmament process on the planet.”

The INF Treaty was signed in 1987 by then-President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The deal effectively bans the parties from having and developing short- and mid-range missiles of all types. According to the provisions, the US was obliged to destroy Pershing I and II launcher systems and BGM-109G Gryphon ground-launched cruise missiles. Moscow, meanwhile, pledged to remove the SS-20 and several other types of missiles from its nuclear arsenal.

Pershing missiles stationed in the US Army arsenal. © Hulton Archive / Getty Images ©

By scrapping the historic accord, Washington is trying to fulfill its “dream of a unipolar world,” a source within the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

“This decision fits into the US policy of ditching the international agreements which impose equal obligations on it and its partners, and render the ‘exceptionalism’ concept vulnerable.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov denounced Trump’s threats as “blackmail” and said that Washington wants to dismantle the INF because it views the deal as a “problem” on its course for “total domination” in the military sphere.

The issue of nuclear arms treaties is too vital for national and global security to rush into hastily-made “emotional” decisions, the official explained. Russia is expecting to hear more on the US’ plans from Trump’s top security adviser, John Bolton, who is set to hold talks in Moscow tomorrow.

President Trump has been open about unilaterally pulling the US out of various international agreements if he deems them to be damaging to national interests. Earlier this year, Washington withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program. All other signatories to the landmark agreement, including Russia, China, and the EU, decided to stick to the deal, while blasting Trump for leaving.

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Converting Khashoggi into Cash

After two weeks of denying any connection to Khashoggi’s disappearance, Riyadh has admitted that he was killed by Saudi operatives but it wasn’t really on purpose.

Jim Jatras

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Authored by James George Jatras via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


The hazard of writing about the Saudis’ absurd gyrations as they seek to avoid blame for the murder of the late, not notably great journalist and Muslim Brotherhood activist Jamal Khashoggi is that by the time a sentence is finished, the landscape may have changed again.

As though right on cue, the narrative has just taken another sharp turn.

After two weeks of denying any connection to Khashoggi’s disappearance, Riyadh has ‘fessed up (sorta) and admitted that he was killed by Saudi operatives but it wasn’t really on purpose:

Y’see, it was kinda’f an ‘accident.’

Oops…

Y’see the guys were arguing, and … uh … a fistfight broke out.

Yeah, that’s it … a ‘fistfight.’

And before you know it poor Jamal had gone all to pieces.

Y’see?

Must’ve been a helluva fistfight.

The figurative digital ink wasn’t even dry on that whopper before American politicos in both parties were calling it out:

  • “To say that I am skeptical of the new Saudi narrative about Mr. Khashoggi is an understatement,” tweeted Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. “First we were told Mr. Khashoggi supposedly left the consulate and there was blanket denial of any Saudi involvement. Now, a fight breaks out and he’s killed in the consulate, all without knowledge of Crown Prince. It’s hard to find this latest ‘explanation‘ as credible.”
  • California Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said in a statement that the new Saudi explanation is “not credible.” “If Khashoggi was fighting inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, he was fighting for his life with people sent to capture or kill him,” Schiff said. “The kingdom and all involved in this brutal murder must be held accountable, and if the Trump administration will not take the lead, Congress must.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan must think he’s already died and gone to his eternal recreation in the amorous embraces of the dark-eyed houris. The acid test for the viability of Riyadh’s newest transparent lie is whether the Turks actually have, as they claim, live recordings of Khashoggi’s interrogation, torture, murder, and dismemberment (not necessarily in that order) – and if they do, when Erdogan decides it’s the right time to release them.

Erdogan has got the Saudis over a barrel and he’ll squeeze everything he can out of them.

From the beginning, the Khashoggi story wasn’t really about the fate of one man. The Saudis have been getting away with bloody murder, literally, for years. They’re daily slaughtering the civilian population of Yemen with American and British help, with barely a ho-hum from the sensitive consciences always ready to invoke the so-called “responsibility to protect” Muslims in Bosnia, Kosovo, Libya, Syria, Xinjiang, Rakhine, and so forth.

Where’s the responsibility not to help a crazed bunch of Wahhabist head-choppers kill people?

But now, just one guy meets a grisly end and suddenly it’s the most important homicide since the Lindbergh baby.

What gives?

Is it because Khashoggi was part of the MSM aristocracy, on account of his relationship with the Washington Post?

Was it because of his other, darker, connections? As related by Moon of Alabama: “Khashoggi was a rather shady guy. A ‘journalist’ who was also an operator for Saudi and U.S. intelligence services. He was an early recruit of the Muslim Brotherhood.” This relationship, writes MoA, touches on the interests of pretty much everyone in the region:

“The Ottoman empire ruled over much of the Arab world. The neo-Ottoman wannabe-Sultan Recep Tayyip Erdogan would like to regain that historic position for Turkey. His main competition in this are the al-Sauds. They have much more money and are strategically aligned with Israel and the United States, while Turkey under Erdogan is more or less isolated. The religious-political element of the competition is represented on one side by the Muslim Brotherhood, ‘democratic’ Islamists to which Erdogan belongs, and the Wahhabi absolutists on the other side.”

With the noose tightening around Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman (MbS), the risible fistfight cock-and-bull story is likely to be the best they can come up with. US President Donald Trump’s having offered his “rogue killers” opening suggests he’s willing to play along. Nobody will really be fooled, but MbS will hope he can persuade important people to pretend they are fooled.

That will mean spreading around a lot of cash. The new alchemy of converting Khashoggi dead into financial gain for the living is just one part of an obvious scheme to pull off what Libya’s Muammar Kaddafi managed after the 1988 Lockerbie bombing: offer up some underlings as the fall guys and let the top man evade responsibility. (KARMA ALERT: That didn’t do Kaddafi any good in the long run.)

In the Saudi case the Lockerbie dodge will be harder, as there are already pictures of men at the Istanbul Consulate General identified as close associates of MbS. But they’ll give it the old madrasa try anyway since it’s all they’ve got.Firings and arrests have started and one suspect has already died in a suspicious automobile “accident.” Heads will roll!

Saving MbS’s skin and his succession to the throne of his doddering father may depend on how many of the usual recipients of Saudi – let’s be honest – bribery and influence peddling will find sufficient pecuniary reason to go along. Saudi Arabia’s unofficial motto with respect to the US establishment might as well be: “The green poultice heals all wounds.”

Anyway, that’s been their experience up to now, but it also in part reflects the same arrogance that made MbS think he could continue to get away with anything. (It’s not shooting someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue, but it’s close.) Whether spreading cash around will continue to have the same salubrious effect it always has had in the past remains to be seen.

To be sure, Trump may succeed in shaking the Saudi date palm for additional billions for arms sales. That won’t necessarily turn around an image problem that may not have a remedy. But still, count on more cash going to high-price lobbying and image-control shops eager to make obscene money working for their obscene client. Some big American names are dropping are dropping Riyadh in a sudden fit of fastidiousness, but you can bet others will be eager to step into their Guccis, both in the US and in the United Kingdom. (It should never be forgotten how closely linked the US and UK establishments are in the Middle East, and to the Saudis in particular.)

It still might not work though. No matter how much expensive PR lipstick the spinmeisters put on this pig, that won’t make it kissable. It’s still a pig.

Others benefitting from hanging Khashoggi’s death around MbS’s neck are:

  • Qatar (after last year’s invasion scare, there’s no doubt a bit of Schadenfreude and (figurative) champagne corks popping in Doha over MbS’s discomfiture. As one source close to the ruling al-Thani family relates, “The Qataris are stunned speechless at Saudi incompetence!” You just can’t get good help these days).

Among the losers one must count Israel and especially Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu. MbS, with his contrived image as the reformer, was the Sunni “beard” he needed to get the US to assemble an “Arab NATO” (as though one NATO weren’t bad enough!) and eliminate Iran for him. It remains to be seen how far that agenda has been set back.

Whether or not MbS survives or is removed – perhaps with extreme prejudice – there’s no doubt Saudi Arabia is the big loser. Question are being asked that should have been asked years ago. As Srdja Trifkovic comments in Chronicles magazine:

“The crown prince’s recklessness in ordering the murder of Khashoggi has demonstrated that he is just a standard despot, a Mafia don with oil presiding over an extended cleptocracy of inbred parasites. The KSA will not be reformed because it is structurally not capable of reform. The regime in Riyadh which stops being a playground of great wealth, protected by a large investment in theocratic excess, would not be ‘Saudi’ any longer. Saudia delenda est.”

The first Saudi state, the Emirate of Diriyah, went belly up in 1818, with the death of head of the house of al-Saud, Abdullah bin Saud – actually, literally with his head hung on a gate in Constantinople by Erdogan’s Ottoman predecessor, Sultan Mahmud II.

The second Saudi state, Emirate of Nejd, likewise folded in 1891.

It’s long past time this third and current abomination joined its antecedents on the ash heap of history.

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