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U.S.-Saudi Relations: Salman Snubs, Obama Shrugs

Posted April 25th, 2016 at 2:35 pm (UTC-4)
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The truth is that, with or without Obama, the fabric of interests that once tied the two countries together has been fraying for some time now….US needs less Saudi oil…the question of whether Saudi Arabia is more of an asset or a liability in the fight against terrorism is much more finely poised.

Obama’s ‘Complicated’ Saudi Trip

Posted April 21st, 2016 at 12:04 pm (UTC-4)
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“It’s complicated.” That’s the way President Barack Obama is said to have recently described the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia. And it appears Saudi Arabia feels the same way. Hanging over this week’s visit by Obama to Riyadh and his attendance at the Gulf Cooperation Summit were comments the president made in a recent Atlantic cover story, describing the Saudis and other Gulf nations “free riders” on U.S. military action in the region, and saying the Saudis need to “share” the Middle East with Iran. In a post-summit news conference Thursday, the president described any strain about his comments as “overblown” and he pointed to U.S. “cooperation in interdicting Iranian efforts to arm the Houthi militias inside Yemen” as creating some confidence. In his statement at the end of the summit, Obama said he reaffirmed the policy of the United States to use all elements of our power to secure our core interests in the Gulf region and to deter and confront external aggression against our allies and partners.” Can statements like that from a president who is in office for just another nine months do much to warm what is by all indications a frosty relationship?