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Corker: Saudi Support for Terrorism ‘Dwarfs’ Qatar’s

The Saudi-led campaign against Qatar has had the unintended but welcome effect of forcing some American politicians to start criticizing the Saudis publicly [1]:

An influential US Republican senator has criticised the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, over a blockade on Qatar by the kingdom and three other Arab states.

The comments by Bob Corker, chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, came as tensions in the region continue over the crisis, with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson expected to make an unscheduled stop in Doha on Thursday.

“The amount of support for terrorism by Saudi Arabia dwarfs what Qatar is doing,” [bold mine-DL] Corker said on Wednesday.

The Saudi-led “Anti-Terror Quartet” has been an exercise in the pot calling the kettle black from the start, but the danger for the Saudis and their allies is that using the rhetoric of anti-terrorism to beat up on Qatar will only draw attention to their own shoddy record. Corker is right to call out the Saudis on this issue, but if what he says is true he should also demand an end to U.S. support for the Saudi-led war on Yemen and a serious reevaluation of the entire relationship with Riyadh. Instead of choosing sides in a feud among client states, the U.S. should be rethinking its ties with all of them.

If so many of our regional clients are involved to one degree or another in supporting jihadists and promoting their ideology, we should be looking for ways to reduce or eliminate U.S. support for them and their unnecessary wars. A good place to start is to cut off all weapons, refueling, and intelligence support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen. The coalition’s disastrous war there has greatly strengthened Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and the U.S. should stop fueling a conflict that has been a boon to jihadists.

14 Comments (Open | Close)

14 Comments To "Corker: Saudi Support for Terrorism ‘Dwarfs’ Qatar’s"

#1 Comment By Professor On July 13, 2017 @ 9:12 am

I was watching BBC America this week and was surprised that the “Former US Government official” interviewed about the decline of ISIS in the battle of Mosul blamed Iran for the founding and support of ISIS. In fact he mentioned Iran in every sentence and never mentioned the Saudis. He was never challenged by the BBC commentator. Ironically the next story was about Saudi and Yemen. Iran may not be producing it’s share of saints but it’s overwhelming to watch the anti-Iran propaganda in our country especially when false statements are allowed to stand and the uniform are influenced.

#2 Comment By Professor On July 13, 2017 @ 9:13 am

was watching BBC America this week and was surprised that the “Former US Government official” interviewed about the decline of ISIS in the battle of Mosul blamed Iran for the founding and support of ISIS. In fact he mentioned Iran in every sentence and never mentioned the Saudis. He was never challenged by the BBC commentator. Ironically the next story was about Saudi and Yemen. Iran may not be producing it’s share of saints but it’s overwhelming to watch the anti-Iran propaganda in our country especially when false statements are allowed to stand and the uninformed are influenced.

#3 Comment By Hexexis On July 13, 2017 @ 10:32 am

The very best account of this S.A. et al. duplicity is Steve Coll’s “Ghost Wars.”

After the Nov. 1979 shoot-’em-up at the Grand Mosque in Mecca (for which the US of A was publicly blamed, by Iran AND S.A.), the Saudi royals were fully satisfied w/ funding their dissidents, e.g., bin Laden, overseas, rather than confronting them at home.

#4 Comment By EliteCommInc. On July 13, 2017 @ 11:03 am

I would agree that we have interjected ourselves into issues that are predominantly mideast regional issues.

And should be treading far more lightly — they have their own agendas.

#5 Comment By TR On July 13, 2017 @ 11:24 am

Don’t depend on Corker. He is probably just trying to shift attention back to himself. He’s a master at that.

#6 Comment By Gratuitous On July 13, 2017 @ 11:44 am

The coalition’s disastrous war there has greatly strengthened Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and the U.S. should stop fueling a conflict that has been a boon to jihadists.

It has done more than strengthen Al Qaeda. Trump’s continuation of Obama’s stupid, destructive policies have also added to the flood of refugees out of the Middle East into Europe and increased the number of those with a solid, lasting reason to hate us because of our role in enabling the stupid, cruel Saudi crown prince to starve and bomb their family and friends.

More refugees.

More terrorists.

#7 Comment By RinTX On July 13, 2017 @ 1:05 pm

I notice the linked article is from Aljazeera. Are Sen Corker’s comments being reported anywhere in the US media?

#8 Comment By Daniel Larison On July 13, 2017 @ 1:31 pm

I haven’t found a report on these remarks anywhere else. The video of the hearing in question can be found here: [2]

Corker’s remarks can be found around the 1:26:30 mark.

#9 Comment By Daniel Larison On July 13, 2017 @ 1:43 pm

CNN has picked up the story: [3]

#10 Comment By RinTX On July 13, 2017 @ 3:26 pm

Glad CNN has mentioned it. I wish more US government officials and US media would talk about Saudi Arabia’s support of terrorists. SA is the main home of Salafist and Wahhabist Islam, which make up the majority of Sunni Islamic terrorists, like ISIS and Al Qaeda.

#11 Comment By Balconesfault On July 14, 2017 @ 4:31 am

At this point, it seems as if our high level participation in the demonization of Qatar is mainly just another Kushner family retaliation.

This time it’s about the half a billion the Qataris finally decided not to loan the Kushners to bail out their upside down real estate investments in NYC … within days Kushner was recommending to Trump that the administration weigh in on the regional dispute on the side of the Saudis. And so we immediately get Trump unfiltered…

Isn’t it nice to know our foreign policy is now a tool to shake down foreign investors for capital to fund real estate? Makes you a bit nostalgic for the days of War for Oil.

#12 Comment By Adriana I Pena On July 14, 2017 @ 11:18 am

It is good to have a Republican who has awakened to the responsibilities of governing, as opposed to being a vocal opposition.

I wonder when the rest of them comes back to reality and realizes that mouthing slogans and insisting that everything that Obama did was bad is not enough when you are supposed to govern.

Well, one by one, they will come to their senses.

#13 Comment By whatever On July 14, 2017 @ 12:03 pm

I really don’t care whether Saudi Arabia’s support for terrorism is bigger than Qatar’s or the other way around. Like the Israelis and Palestinians, they can argue about it ’til kingdom come. I just want America out of the Middle East.

#14 Comment By Mercy Me On July 14, 2017 @ 2:38 pm

“I wonder when the rest of them comes back to reality and realizes that mouthing slogans and insisting that everything that Obama did was bad is not enough when you are supposed to govern.”

They’re like junkies. You can’t expect them to stop stealing from the taxpayers, attacking people halfway around the world, and making other bad decisions until you’ve weaned them off the Israel money and the defense sector money. Once they’re clean and sober, they would almost certainly take a saner and perhaps even Constitutional approach to foreign policy. Who knows, they might even decide to rein in the executive on declaring war.