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Saudi Arabia’s rebalancing is an ongoing source of anxiety, and has created a tense climate throughout the region (source: macpixxel for GIS)
Over the past two years, Saudi Arabia has rejoined the premier league of global geopolitics. But the kingdom is in conflict on all fronts. Economically, it is waging a “petro war,” starting a contest of wills with not just the United States, but also Canada, Iran and Russia. Militarily, the Saudis and their Sunni allies are conducting a full-scale war in Yemen against the Houthis. Riyadh is also developing more assertive policy of influence, reflected in its recent refusal to finance arms for the Lebanese military.
Saudi Arabia needs to make far-reaching domestic and foreign policy changes, and the measures announced in April 2015 by King Salman mark the first steps in that direction. The recent appointment of two crown princes signals a generational shift, and the creation of two Royal Councils for foreign and economic policy point to professionalism and transparency in gove...
Dr. Udo Steinbach
Saudi Arabia’s military engagement in Yemen is indicative of Riyadh’s resolve to take the protection of its security interests into its own hands now that relations with the US are showing signs of strain. It feels threatened by Iran and fears it could lose influence in the Middle East. And it has become entangled in the web of rival political and militant Islamic ...