An Opportunity to Renew Confidence with Gulf Allies

After OPEC decided to decrease oil production quotas, the Biden administration determined to conduct a formal reassessment of the US relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. America in effect has no choice but to defend Gulf oil fields against Iran irrespective of what MBS does domestically and internationally and MBS knows it because the US government cannot risk the Arabian oil fields falling into the hands of the Iranian regime. It is as simple as that. What Biden has repeatedly done – and before him to a lesser extent Obama and Trump – is to undermine the confidence Gulf leaders hold in the United States. This has never been properly repaired because of the Obama-Biden strategy of hoping to align with Iran and ditching the KSA. The ongoing formal reassessment should not be construed as a means to further undermine the confidence Saudi leaders hold in the United States but rather as a means to rebuild confidence and this can only be done if the strategy of hoping to eventually align with the mullahs is fully thrown out. The question is if the disastrously failed strategy is still in place? This remains somewhat unclear. The Biden administration says that it does not want to renew negotiations with Iran over the resumption of the JCPOA for as long as Iran is killing its own citizens and providing Russia with drones. Placing what are in effect impossible conditions in the path of negotiations suggests that the Biden administration has had enough of being fooled by devious, murderous clerics. However, the US government is leaving some unclarity as to what is its real intentions which certainly makes Team Biden seem dishonorable in the eyes of Gulf interlocutors, i.e. in Middle Eastern cultural terms devoid of honor. The Biden administration would be particularly well-advised to stop discounting the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which as the leading nation in OPEC is an influential power in the international community and an important ally of the United States. The Biden administration needs to make a clear and credible, clean break with the unfortunate strategy of aligning with the Mullahs and ditching MBS and the KSA. The American interest demands so or else the US will continue to lose influence in GCC nations to Russia and China.

Published by Daniella Bartfeld

Daniella Bartfeld is the founding director of the Aliyah Organization.

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