For many months I've suspected that the (out)house of Saud is "on the menu", but in the wake of the "coup" in Turkey, the question may really be whose menu the (out)house is on. There is the very real possibility, as some readers here have suggested in their commentary, or in their private emails, that Sultan Erdogan was alerted to the pending coup by Russia, and has seized upon it as a crisis of opportunity to purge Turkey of opposition, and to take it along a rather different path of Islamicization than we have hitherto seen, rejecting the heritage of Attaturk, and returning to its Sufi roots. There is, indeed, reason to conclude this, for Erdogan's sudden and sweeping foreign policy reversals of the last few weekes, opening the door to normalized relations with Syria, restoring relations with Israel, and most importantly, apologizing to Russia for the downing of a Russia fighter last year and offering full compensation to the victim's family, are an indicator that Erdogan has broken the alliance with the Saudis in Syria.
Now, according to this article that many have shared with me, the US State Department is alerting Americans in Saudi Arabia:
While the article is worth reading, I want to focus your attention on the beginning paragraphs, for they form the grist for the mill of today's "high octane speculation":
State Department Warns Americans Of "Potential, Imminent Threat" In Saudi Arabia | Zero Hedge
Back in April, the US quietly warned citizens of "credible threats" to tourist areas in Turkey, particularly in Istanbul and the southern resort city of Antalya. In retrospect, one historic suicide bombing at the local airport, and one failed and/or staged coup later, the warning had been spot on. Which is why while traditionally official warnings of upcoming threats to US citizens around the globe have been generally ignored, this time it may be prudent to pay attention.
Moments ago, the US State Department warned Americans in Saudi Arabia about a “potential, imminent threat against U.S. citizens” Wednesday and urged to travel with caution. The agency tweeted out a brief statement titled “Reports of a potential imminent threat” in Jeddah.
So what's the big deal? Where's the room for high octane speculation here?
For one thing, the admission that the US was warning American citizens in Turkey is a strange admission to something that is now evident: it had advance knowledge of the coup (and may have been involved at some level in orchestrating it), and this means that at least two countries had advance knowledge, the USA, and Russia. Thus, the context suggests that perhaps a similar thing is in store for Saudi Arabia. One can, of course, rehearse all the reasons that this is highly unlikely: the Saudis possess an efficient intelligence service, and given the recent declassifications of the 9/11 commission document, certainly appear capable of mounting covert operations. Those documents make it abundantly clear that the (out)house of Saud is a major sponsor of terrorism, as has also a recent Rand corporation study. In the face of such realities, a coup attempt in the kingdom would appear unlikely. Thus, the State Department's warning concerns only the possibility for "run-of-the-mill" Wahhabi nuttiness and terrorism. No coup here, nothing to see, move along.
But if you've been following the (out)house closely lately, there are tensions within the royal house and over its current course. More significantly, the eastern portion of the kingdom, with its strong Shia presence, is also the oil producing region of the country. And Shia Islam would connect any potential underground networks to the Saudis' mortal enemy: Iran. Of course, a shia-led coup attempt would rip the kingdom apart, but it would put an end to Wahhabism, and cement Iran's role as leader of Shia terrorist networks covertly, and its public role as "regional stablizer" (which it is not).
Admittedly, this is such a bizarre speculation I hesitate to advance it, but given the suddenness of Mr. Erdogan's foreign policy about-face, his clear break with the Saudi agenda in the Middle East, his overtures to Russia, Syria, and Israel, indicate that something big is, indeed, "up". If the crosshairs are now on Riyadh, then that would certainly constitute "something big." Clearly, someone wants to remake the Middle East, and to stabilize the region. It does not take much imagination to see who that may be, and who might be willing to sponsor a coup in the (out)house, for with "silk road" agendas on the horizon, Moscow and Beijing would be looking at the (out)house of Saud with a skeptical and jaundiced eye. And they have an ally in Iran which, its own brazenness and mediaeval mullah kookiness notwithstanding, appears far more stable than Riyadh.
In short, maybe the State Department pulled back the curtain - just a little - on potential future developments. And who would weep for the (out)house? Few, if any.
See you on the flip side...