Insanity or Politics - With bush There is No Discernible Difference - I Vote for Insanityposted by Bill Arnett @ 10:22 AM Permalink
Please see this article posted at the NYT just yesterday, titled, "Saudis’ Role in Iraq Frustrates U.S. Officials":
During a high-level meeting in Riyadh in January, Saudi officials confronted a top American envoy with documents that seemed to suggest that Iraq’s prime minister could not be trusted.[…]bush must decide his foreign policy by flipping a coin, tossing rings onto bottles, reading Tarot cards, casting bones, a cut of the cards, voodoo, and that ole Black Magic, for just yesterday the bush maladministration was upset with the Saudis, claiming they were using forged documents as evidence against al-Maliki, and claiming that too many of the foreign "terrorists/insurgents" were crossing over into Iraq from Saudi Arabia.
Now, Bush administration officials are voicing increasing anger at what they say has been Saudi Arabia’s counterproductive role in the Iraq war. They say that beyond regarding Mr. Maliki as an Iranian agent, the Saudis have offered financial support to Sunni groups in Iraq. Of an estimated 60 to 80 foreign fighters who enter Iraq each month, American military and intelligence officials say that nearly half are coming from Saudi Arabia and that the Saudis have not done enough to stem the flow.
One senior administration official says he has seen evidence that Saudi Arabia is providing financial support to opponents of Mr. Maliki. He declined to say whether that support was going to Sunni insurgents because, he said, “That would get into disagreements over who is an insurgent and who is not.”
Senior Bush administration officials said the American concerns would be raised next week when Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates make a rare joint visit to Jidda, Saudi Arabia.
Officials in Washington have long resisted blaming Saudi Arabia for the chaos and sectarian strife in Iraq, choosing instead to pin blame on Iran and Syria. Even now, military officials rarely talk publicly about the role of Saudi fighters among the insurgents in Iraq.
The accounts of American concerns came from interviews with several senior administration officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they believed that openly criticizing Saudi Arabia would further alienate the Saudi royal family at a time when the United States is still trying to enlist Saudi support for Mr. Maliki and the Iraqi government, and for other American foreign policy goals in the Middle East, including an Arab-Israeli peace plan.
The American officials said they had no doubt that the documents shown to Mr. Khalilzad were forgeries, though the Saudis said they had obtained them from sources in Iraq. “Maliki wouldn’t be stupid enough to put that on a piece of paper,” one senior Bush administration official said. He said Mr. Maliki later assured American officials that the documents were forgeries.
The Bush administration’s frustration with the Saudi government has increased in recent months because it appears that Saudi Arabia has stepped up efforts to undermine the Maliki government and to pursue a different course in Iraq from what the administration has charted. Saudi Arabia has also stymied a number of other American foreign policy initiatives, including a hoped-for Saudi embrace of Israel.
Of course, the Saudi government has hardly masked its intention to prop up Sunni groups in Iraq and has for the past two years explicitly told senior Bush administration officials of the need to counterbalance the influence Iran has there. Last fall, King Abdullah warned Vice President Dick Cheney that Saudi Arabia might provide financial backing to Iraqi Sunnis in any war against Iraq’s Shiites if the United States pulled its troops out of Iraq, American and Arab diplomats said.
So, what does bush do?
See the Huffington Post today, titled, "U.S. to sell advanced weapons to Saudi Arabia and others.":
The Bush administration has decided to supply billions of dollars in advanced new weapons to Saudi Arabia, other Arab allies of the United States and to Israel, senior State Department officials and congressional aides said Friday.When you can't trust an ally, when you know that ally is forging documents to justify their hostile intentions towards the leader of another country, when that ally supplied 14 or 15 of Osama's hijackers to bring down the WTC, when that ally is sponsoring "terrorist/insurgents" within Iraq that are killing Shia Iraqis and American military forces, and it's finally time to do something about it, well, it seems crystal clear that the thing to do is to sell them $20 Billion of advanced weaponry that is almost certainly going to be used against Iraqis and American soldiers.
The arms and aid package, which the officials said is to be announced on Monday, is part of a U.S. initiative to reassure worried allies in the Middle East that despite its troubles in Iraq, the United States remains committed to the region. It also is meant to send a signal of resolve to Iran's increasingly confident leaders.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates leave for the Middle East on Monday on a rare joint mission to deliver those messages in person to the region's leaders.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the package has not yet been announced, said it would include selling Saudi Arabia advanced weapons known as Joint Direct Attack Munitions, or JDAMs. JDAMs convert simple gravity bombs into accurate "smart" weapons.
Israel protested the proposed sale when word of it first leaked in April.
The package also will include new weapons for the United Arab Emirates, another U.S. ally in the Persian Gulf, and both military and economic support to Egypt. Other details of the proposed arms sales weren't immediately available Friday.
Although it's likely to be controversial, the administration has decided to proceed with the sale and will compensate Israel — which seeks to maintain a "qualitative military edge" over its Arab neighbors — with military upgrades of its own, the officials said.
"All that has been sorted out," said a senior State Department official.
Israel has asked for access to the Air Force's most advanced fighter jet, the F-22 Raptor, and its stealth technology, which makes the aircraft more difficult to see on radar.
Like the title says: Insanity or politics - with bush there is no discernible difference - but my money is on "insane".