27.11.2013 Author: Vladimir Odintsov

Saudi Arabia is planning to acquire nuclear weapons

Prince-Turki-Al-FaisalThe settlement of Iranian nuclear deadlock has recently become a top priority for a number of countries, since it is directly affecting stability in the region. Today there’s two camps – one that is desperately trying to solve the diplomatic puzzle despite the differences in their positions in order to preserve peace on the Middle East. This camp is represented by Russia, the United States, China, Germany and even Great Britain. The observers have noted a remarkable shift in the position taken by the White House towards the Iranian nuclear program ever since Hassan Rouhani took the presidential office from his predecessor. Rouhani is widely regarded as a moderate politician.

The French position remains somehow unclear in the Iranian stand-off since the representatives of the Champs-Elysée in mid November derailed half of the US proposals that had been approved by all sides even before the negotiations started. And it seems that this was no coincidence. The White House has recently changed its standing on the ways of settling the Middle Eastern crises and France wants to take advantage of the cooling in the US relations with Saudi Arabia and Israel caused by this fact. The Champs-Elysée are particularly interested in improving its standing with Saudi Arabia, since Saudi sheikhs can be exceptionally generous in terms of investments and personals gifts. The rumors about the brilliants and other means of expressing “gratitude” that the Saudis have presented to the U.S. politics must have crossed the ocean and is now tormenting the feeble souls of the French politicians.

The second camp is represented by Saudi Arabia and Israel, the two believe that the prospects of the nuclear program in Iran are non-negotiable. This position has not simply melted the former regional rivals together, it pushed them towards devising different conspiracies against Tehran, military included.

How can Israel possibly allow anybody to have a chance of acquiring nuclear weapons on the Middle East, Israelis believe that’s its their own privilege that they are not going to share with anybody. In its rivalry with Tehran, Jerusalem is willing to turn a blind eye to the Saudi ambitions of acquiring nuclear weapons.

This Wahhabite monarchy that has blamed Iran for its nuclear program that “is posing security threat to the region”, has expressed a desire of acquring this kind of WMDs themselves. This desire was explicitly expressed by the former Saudi ambassador to the US, Director of Saudi Arabia General Intelligence Directorate, prince Turki bin Faisal Al Saud who said in December 2011 at “The Gulf and the Globe” conference that: “If our efforts and the efforts of the world community fail to bring about the dismantling of the Israeli arsenal of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and preventing Iran from acquiring the same, then why shouldn’t we at least study seriously all available options, including acquiring WMDs, so that our future generations will not blame us for neglecting any courses of action that will keep looming dangers away from us”. Prince Turki is one of the few members of the House of Saud that is expressing its opinion publicly on this matter. Even though he tried to imply that the Saudi atomic warheads would serve deterrence purposes only and that “Iran has a right to acquire peaceful atom”, his message nevertheless remains clear.

This fact alarmed the United States Senator from Massachusetts Edward “Ed” Markey to the extent of sending a letter to the U.S. President. In this letter he’s expressed strong concerns that Saudi Arabia is accelerating its pursuit of a nuclear weapons program and advised the bilateral nuclear cooperation to be suspended.

A couple of days ago Mark Urban, prominent diplomatic and defence editor for BBC’s Newsnight has reported that next state to acquire nuclear weapons can be Saudi Arabia, with Iran coming second. According to his high profile NATO sources “Saudi Arabia has invested in Pakistani nuclear weapons projects, and believes it could obtain atomic bombs at will”. One can hardly imagine that Pakistan would forget all of its international obligations and ship its nuclear charges to Riyadh. But this won’t be the first time in history that WMDs were handed over by its owner to a friendly country. Great Britain has become a nuclear power this way and Israel too.

But there’s no smoke without fire, and when you’ve got the kind of money Saudi Arabia has, you can import nuclear charges from anywhere, say Israel, that, according to The Sunday Times, has been improving its ties with Saudi Arabia at a “record pace” recently.

Vladimir Odintsov, political commentator, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook. 

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