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Friday, May 4

We fight al Qaeda in Yemen, support them in Syria. American hypocrisy in action.

I don't read the New York Times as a matter of course so I had to learn from Sputnik, which I read every day, that on May 3 a NYT headline announced  [U.S.] Army Special Forces Secretly Help Saudis Combat Threat From Yemen Rebels. This isn't news to anyone who closely watches events in the Middle East but anyhow the Times spilled a great deal of printer's ink, so to speak, and used three big-name reporters in an effort to explain how the U.S. got into yet another ungainly position in the Middle East.

The retort to the Times article came from Moon of Alabama's Yemen - Massacres and Assassinations Trigger a New Phase of Warwhich details what Americans are supporting in the Saudi/UAE-led war in Yemen. But it was a source for the Sputnik report, former CIA analyst, case officer and whistleblower, John Kiriakou, who tied it all in a bow:
"The United States — I hate to say this, but I'm just going to say it straight out — the United States has been in the pocket of the Saudis for many, many years. For so many years it was about oil; now it's about oil and investments. In many cases, we end up doing the Saudis' dirty work for them. ..."
By saying "oil" Kiriakou was covering a lot of ground, including American support for the Saudi-led petrodollar and pricing of OPEC oil in U.S. dollars. And it could be argued that these factors, while chief, are but two among several to explain Washington's willingness to do "dirty work" for the Saudi monarchy. 

If the Saudis wanted they could sing like a bird about all their dirty work for the USA. But no matter how it's sliced the result is the same: Americans have betrayed their most cherished national values and worked against their own security interests to support the Saudi regime -- and for less good reason than rationalizers of the situation are willing to admit. 

What we're looking at now, however, is U.S. involvement with the Saudis that's in the cuckoo range: we support Saudi dirty work in Yemen ostensibly because we're against al Qaeda's presence there, and we support al Qaeda in Syria because, well, that's what the Saudis want.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo inadvertently pointed out the hypocrisy informing the contradictory actions while he was in Riyadh on Sunday. From the NYT report:
“Iran destabilizes this entire region. It supports proxy militias and terrorist groups. It is an arms dealer to the Houthi rebels in Yemen.”
What does Mr Pompeo think the United States is doing in the region? Americans are fielding proxy militias and supporting terrorist groups in Syria. And when it comes to arms dealing, let 's hear it from President Donald Trump, also quoted by the NYT:
In March, as [Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman] met with Mr. Trump and top national security officials in Washington, the State Department approved the sale of an estimated $670 million in anti-tank missiles in an arms package that also included spare parts for American-made tanks and helicopters that Saudi Arabia previously purchased.
“Saudi Arabia is a very wealthy nation, and they’re going to give the United States some of that wealth hopefully, in the form of jobs, in the form of the purchase of the finest military equipment anywhere in the world,” Mr. Trump said at the time.
How does Mr Trump think the Saudis have been paying the United States to support their interests all these decades? With tiddly winks?   

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