A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Saudis Bail on Asad

 UPDATE: A roundup at Syria Comment.

Saudi Arabia has recalled its Ambassador to Syria, saying Syrian actions are unacceptable to the Kingdom. Kuwait and Bahrain have since followed the Saudi lead. This is fairly important I think, since the Kingdom supported Ben Ali and Mubarak to the bitter ends. (Libya was another story, but there is personal bad blood between Qadhafi and the King, so there was a getting-even element there.) King ‘Abdullah has personal ties with Syria, so his move is a sign the Saudis are very uncomfortable with the course of events there and possibly cutting their losses.

It may not deter Asad, of course, but it's a pretty interesting signal.

1 comment:

David Mack said...

Timing of Saudi action makes me wonder whether there are important ties between the Syrian tribes in the Deir Azzour area and Saudi tribes on the other side of the border. Some of the latter are key sources of loyal personnel for King Abullah's pillar of internal security, the Saudi National Guard.