Friday, April 9, 2010

Israel is the easiest target

What better way to deflect domestic criticism in the UK than to pander to swaths of bigoted voters by taking unjustified measures against the Jewish State?


Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Special Relationship Ends

by Benny Morris

The fall out between the U.S. and Israel, Benny Morris explains, threatens world peace. Does Obama realize that a nuclear cloud hangs overhead?

Without doubt, the Middle East's rogue or terrorist leaders, from Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Hizbullah's Hassan Nasrallah to Hamas's Khalid Mashal, are rubbing their hands with glee.

The year-long rift between the Netanyahu and Obama administrations over Israel's settlement policy in the West Bank and East Jerusalem is threatening to turn into a political rupture - just as Israel faces an existential threat
Israel faces an existential threat which it needs every ounce of American support to counter.
which it needs every ounce of American support to counter.

In the first decades of Israel's existence, when it fought and defeated Egyptian armies, the Eisenhower and Nixon administrations twice twisted arms in Tel Aviv to force Israeli forces to withdraw - first from the Sinai Peninsula (1956-57), then from territory west of the Suez Canal which it had occupied during the October War (1973).
But the Americans continued to provide Israel with strategic cover to counter Soviet threats of nuclear destruction and direct military intervention.

Today, Israel faces an Israel-hating Islamist coalition, of Iran, Hizbullah and Hamas, which may soon have nuclear weapons - but does so without any certainty about American goodwill and protection.

Barack Obama may say that the United States supports Israel and will not countenance a "nuclear Iran". But most Israelis see Obama as lacking in that basic commitment to and sympathy for Israel that characterised American presidents from Truman through Kennedy to Clinton and George W Bush.

As recently as 2000 and 2005, Israeli prime ministers Ehud Barak and Ariel Sharon felt able to offer or make major territorial concessions to the Palestinians because they knew that Washington would make up any shortfall in security that withdrawing from the West Bank and Gaza might entail.

Obama's deliberate coldness toward America's traditional ally has not been lost on the Israeli public. He spoke in Cairo last year to the Muslim world, while avoiding a "balancing" visit to Jerusalem. He
pettily humiliated Netanyahu during last week's visit to America (on the evening of their meeting, Obama left Netanyahu for more than an hour stranded in the White House while he dined without his guest). Nor will Washington's overbearing tone be quickly forgotten.

And while, without doubt, Obama's health care bill victory has bolstered his stature in American public opinion and enabled him to face off with Netanyahu, his Democratic Party may yet pay a price in the congressional elections in November.

The pro-Israel lobby in Washington remains powerful, despite recent knocks and the emergence of a small, Obama-supporting dissident Jewish lobby called J-Street.

While American Jews traditionally vote Democrat, Obama's trouncing of Israel may well affect campaign contributions and votes (American Jews, who number more than 5 million, tend to contribute and vote

In the coming weeks, it will become clear whether Israelis interpret Obama's behaviour toward Netanyahu as a
Obama's deliberate coldness toward America's traditional ally has not been lost on the Israeli public.
personal issue or whether they see it reflects a deeper disaffection with Israel itself.

Israelis have recently been given grounds for feeling that Netanyahu is an incompetent (and unlucky) prime minister: the international political fallout from the assassination he authorised of Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai, including Britain's expulsion of the Mossad head of station in London, is still reverberating.

And while most Israelis approve of the killing of a Hamas general and condemn Western and Arab hypocrisy in this regard (MI6 agents have never used non-British passports? Did Dubai's rulers really support Hamas's gun-running activities, in cahoots with Iran, on its soil?), many question the wisdom of the cost-benefit calculus.

Many Israelis have been wary of Netanyahu since his first tenure as prime minister in the late 1990s, when his relations with Clinton were poor. But they will not endorse American interference in Israel's politics or with its vital interests.

Did the Obama administration embark on its confrontation with Netanyahu in order to force him to switch coalition partners from the two main Right-wing parties - Yisrael Beiteinu and Shas - to the more agreeable centrist Kadima Party? Or is it merely seeking to freeze the Israeli settlement enterprise, to pave the way for Palestinian re-entry into peace negotiations?

Either way, most Israelis resent Obama's arm-twisting, and it is by no means clear that Israel will soften the widespread desire to retain East Jerusalem while opposing the settlement enterprise in the wider West Bank.

Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad speaks of the destruction of "the Zionist regime", and Iran has spent a decade fashioning the tools with which to achieve this - nuclear weapons and the Shihab III rockets to deliver them.

Washington may still be beyond Iranian reach and the Arab Gulf states, while nervous about Iran's bid for regional hegemony and atomic bombs, may rightly feel that they are not the intended targets. But Israelis are keenly aware that they are in Tehran's sights.

Iran is an estimated one to three years away from building the bomb. And its local clients and proxies, Hizbullah in Lebanon and the Hamas in Gaza, have been equipped by Tehran (and Syria) with rockets with which to pound Israel's cities and air bases.

The White House and State Department still speak about mobilising the world community for sanctions to halt Iran's nuclear programme. But Russia and China are not on board for effective sanctions, while Obama and the American military have manifestly no stomach for a military confrontation with Iran.

Indeed, Netanyahu by now may suspect that the Americans have resigned themselves to a nuclear-armed Iran and are relying on deterrence to fend off an Iranian nuclear attack on Israel. But many Israelis fear that the anti-Semitic mullahs may prove less rational than the ageing apparatchiks who ran the Kremlin during the Cold War nuclear

The only action that could halt Iran's march toward nuclear weaponry is a strike by Israel. Whether Israel can do so effectively without a green light and some assistance from Washington is unclear.

At a minimum, Israel would need American permission to overfly Iraq and perhaps landing rights, for refuelling and repair, in regional U.S. air bases. Israel may also need additional equipment and weaponry. After an air assault, Israel would need American political backing to prevent Security Council condemnation and sanctions resolutions, and a promise of support and supplies if a wider Middle East war ensued.

While many Arab and Western governments would no doubt privately welcome the destruction of Iran's nuclear facilities, their public posturing would be different.

So far, Obama - like George W Bush before him - has vetoed an Israeli pre-emptive strike. The Americans are fearful of the chaos that might engulf the Middle East and are aware of their vulnerability in the region. They assume that the Iranians would charge them with complicity, whether or not they were complicit.

It is possible that Netanyahu hoped to reach an agreement with Obama based on a trade-off - Israeli concessions on the Palestinians in exchange for America agreeing to an attack on the Iranian installations. But Obama apparently offered Netanyahu nothing, while demanding everything on the Palestinian front.

Washington believes that Palestinian-Israeli friction helps fuel Muslim antagonism towards the U.S.. In its view, the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations or, better still, an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord would reduce this antagonism.

Which brings us to Netanyahu and the problem of Jerusalem. In December 2000, Clinton called for a two-state solution in which the Palestinians would have the Gaza Strip and about 95 per cent of the West Bank. The Arab-populated neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem would constitute the Palestinian state's capital.

Ehud Barak, prime minister at the time, accepted the Clinton parameters, including on Jerusalem. The Palestinians rejected them. And while Netanyahu, under pressure from Obama, may have agreed to the principle of a two-state solution and to limit construction around the West Bank, he has never accepted the principle of dividing
Obama has ignored evidence that the Palestinians are averse to a two-state solution.
Jerusalem. Hence his insistence that Israel continue constructing housing.

For Obama, this means that Netanyahu is not serious about peace and a two-state solution. He is right to the extent that there can be no two-state solution without Palestinian sovereignty over Arab East Jerusalem.

A the same time, Obama has ignored evidence that the Palestinians are averse to a two-state solution. How else to explain the majority Palestinian vote in 2006 for Hamas, which advocates Israel's destruction? Or the rejection by Yasser Arafat (with his colleagues, including Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian "president") of Clinton's two-state proposals six years before? Or Abbas's effective "no" to the peace proposals in 2008 of Ehud Olmert? Or Abbas's refusal to recognise Israel as "a Jewish state" while insisting on the Palestinian refugees' "right of return" (which would give Israel an Arab-majority)?

In short, Netanyahu has given Obama ample grounds for frustration and anger - and Obama has given Netanyahu ample grounds for suspicion about his real sympathies. And this has happened at a crucial moment in Middle Eastern history, when a nuclear cloud looms over the region.

(from the Sunday Telegraph)

Nisan 18, 5770 / 02 April 10

Before you speak, think -Is it necessary? Is it true? Is it kind? Will it hurt anyone? Will it improve on the silence?"— Sathya Sai Baba, (1926 - )

Saudi Arabia's split-personaltiy in Afghanistan

This article has a lot of needless euphemisms about the role of Saudi Arabia in Afghanistan, that only make a complex picture totally incomprehensible. Saudi money financed the Madrassahs that created the Taleban, and Saudi Arabia helped to arm the Taleban against the Soviets. Now they are stuck with a group that is threatening their own regime directly, and a lot of Taleban fighters are recruited from Saudi Arabia. On the one hand, the Saudi government cannot be for Al-Qaeda, because it threatens the Saudi Regime and because Saudi Arabia can't allow itself yet to be seen as an enemy of the United States. On the other hand, they cannot be seen to be taking sides against Muslims. It is still confusing, but at least with that introduction, it might be more comprehensible.

"Afghanistan Crisis" is also a euphemism and is incorrect. Thirty years ago, there was a "crisis" in Afghanistan and the term was used appropriately. But a crisis cannot go on indefinitely. At some point it must be admitted that there is a war going on in Afghanistan, not a momentary "crisis."

Ami Isseroff


During the January 2010 London Conference on Afghanistan, Afghan President Hamid Karzai appealed to Saudi King 'Abdallah, asking him to participate in mediation efforts between the Afghan government and the Taliban. His appeal focused media attention on Saudi Arabia's long-standing diplomatic involvement in this country.

This report reviews the roots of Saudi Arabia's involvement in Afghanistan and of its current policy there, which is characterized by several conflicting features: on the one hand, a firm objection to the escalating Western war against the Taliban – a war which endangers Pakistan – and attempts to set the stage for negotiations with certain groups within this movement; and on the other hand, a recognition that the main Taliban leadership has aligned itself with Al-Qaeda and is therefore an enemy of Saudi Arabia.


The motivations for Saudi Arabia's long-standing interest in Afghanistan are threefold: concern for its strategic ally Pakistan, competition with Iran, and considerations of political prestige.

A) Pakistan – Saudi Arabia's Strongest Sunni Ally

Saudi Arabia views the ongoing war in Afghanistan as a threat to Pakistan, which, for many decades, has served as Saudi Arabia's strategic depth in the Muslim world, and whose stability is therefore of the utmost importance to the Saudis. This was related in an article by Al-Watan's editor, Jamal Khashoggi: "Saudi Arabia has a genuine interest to bring peace to Afghanistan because it will help stabilize Pakistan, a strategic ally of the kingdom. [The Saudis] can use [their] connections with Afghan religious leaders to achieve [this aim]."[1] The daily Al-Jazirah likewise expressed Saudi Arabia's concerns about Pakistan, in an editorial published following a series of terrorist attacks in Pakistan cities: "The growth of Taliban terrorist organizations and their spread throughout [strategically] important regions in interior Pakistan is a negative development, not just for Pakistan and Afghanistan, but for the [entire] Indian subcontinent... The security crisis Afghanistan is experiencing, and which Pakistan is currently struggling with, represents a serious challenge to both these countries, as well as to the U.S. and to NATO as a whole."[2]

B) Saudi Arabia's Rivalry with Iran

Saudi Arabia's interest in Afghanistan also stems from its ongoing rivalry with Iran, whose ties to Afghanistan go back centuries. The Safavid and Qajar dynasties (which ruled Iran from the early 16th to the early 20th centuries) both dominated the Herat region in Western Afghanistan and claimed it as part of their empires. Afghanistan also has a large Shi'ite minority (estimated at 20% of the population) and a number of ethnic minorities that speak Iranian languages. Today, Iran views Afghanistan as part of its sphere of influence and as an arena for advancing its political, strategic, economic, and cultural interests.

Saudi Arabia strongly opposes Iran's use of Afghanistan to boost its regional status and set up an additional front of confrontation with the U.S., and the Saudi dailies Al-Sharq Al-Awsat and Al-Watan have pointed to the heavy involvement of Iran in Afghanistan.[3] As a matter of fact, the current conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran is just another phase in the long-standing rivalry between them. This rivalry intensified especially after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, which generated immense solidarity with Iran in the Muslim world. Saudi Arabia sought to counter this development and restore its supremacy in the Muslim world through two main courses of action, the first of which was a decade-long involvement in the Afghan jihad against the Soviet Union. This war culminated in victory over the Soviets and in the demise of their empire, which greatly enhanced Saudi Arabia's prestige at the expense of Iran's. Second, the Saudis engaged in a global effort to spread Wahhabi Islam throughout the world by financing educational facilities and providing personnel to run them. This too was a Saudi victory, for the Saudi efforts were far more successful than Iran's attempts to export its revolution.  

C) Saudi Arabia's Status and Prestige in the Islamic World

Finally, Saudi Arabia sees itself as leader of the Islamic. Mediation in Afghanistan serves a means of improving Saudi Arabia's prestige and status, both in the Muslim world and internationally.

Saudi Diplomatic Activity vis-à-vis Afghanistan

As a new U.S. administration took office and resolved to re-examine its foreign policy in Central Asia, Saudi Arabia made efforts to influence the shaping of this new policy as well as the global (and especially the American) media discourse regarding Afghanistan's future. Indeed, the Afghanistan issue was at the center of meetings held between the Saudi leadership and senior U.S. officials, particularly the summit between U.S. President Barack Obama and Saudi King 'Abdallah.[4]

Even though Saudi Arabia stands against the U.S. war in Afghanistan, as will be explained below, U.S. policy in the matter has been greatly affected by Saudi activity, as demonstrated by the support of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, for any Saudi effort to mediate between the Taliban and the Afghan government.[5] This influence was also reflected in a report published by the daily Al-Watan following a meeting between Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to which "Saudi Arabia and the U.S. see eye-to-eye on the [issue of] supporting...  Afghanistan."[6]

Over the last year and a half, Saudi-mediated secret talks have been held between the Afghan government, under President Hamid Karzai, and the Taliban, with active support from the U.K., which maintained close contact with the Saudi leadership over the matter.[7] These talks had been cold-shouldered by the Bush administration, whereas the Obama administration has approved of and encouraged them. Recently, Saudi Arabia's involvement in Afghanistan was brought out in the open in Karzai's January 28, 2010 speech at the London Conference on Afghanistan, in which he urged Saudi King 'Abdallah to take an active role in the Afghanistan peace process and to serve as mediator between the Afghan government and the Taliban militants: "For the sake of [ensuring] the success of our [peace] process, we hope that King 'Abdallah Bin 'Abd Al-Aziz will graciously support it and participate in directing it." Following these remarks in London, President Karzai visited Riyadh, where he made an official request to King 'Abdallah for his aid. Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-Feisal responded that his country would comply with this request on the condition that the Taliban break off its ties with Al-Qaeda.[8] It should be noted that Saudi Arabia insists that it has no ties with the Taliban, apparently in response to criticism it has faced in the past over connections with the organization. Foreign Minister Al-Faisal recently stated that no ties whatsoever exist between his country and the Taliban. He said that contact between the two sides was abrogated by Saudi Arabia in response to the Taliban's sheltering of Al-Qaeda, and since then, there have been no ties at all.[9] However, although Saudi Arabia did break off its ties with the Taliban faction led by Mullah Omar, it has maintained ties with other factions.

The Saudi Media Effort

In the course of a public debate in the U.S. over the future of the war against terror in Afghanistan, it was proposed to adopt a new policy vis-a-vis the Taliban, namely to stop the war against this movement and focus instead on Al-Qaeda alone. As part of this debate, the Washington Post published an op-ed by Saudi Prince Turki Al-Faisal [10] in which he supported this approach, urging U.S. policy makers to focus their efforts on bin Laden rather than on the Taliban. Al-Faisal argued that the Afghan Taliban is a weak and disorganized group, characterizing them as a loose collection of malcontents opposed to the current government, without any formal hierarchical structure. He hinted that some parts of the organization would be open to dialogue, and even advised the U.S. to drop the term "terrorists" when referring to its members. He recommended launching serious negotiations with the Taliban, while also reaching out to tribal leaders.[11]

The Saudi press attached great importance to Prince Al-Faisal's recommendations – the daily Al-Watan cited them in three separate editorials – and responded angrily to the U.S. administration's rejection of his advice. Al-Watan called for "the opinions of experts in this matter [to] be given consideration, and especially [the opinion of] countries with a long history of expertise in handling the Afghan situation and with an understanding of the Afghan psychology and political approach. In his Washington Post article, Prince Turki Al-Faisal offered American decision-makers clear policy recommendations regarding Afghanistan which it is crucial that they adopt..."[12]

The Saudi Press on the Possibility of Saudi Mediation in Afghanistan

Al-Watan Editor: Saudi Arabia, More than Other Nations, Understands the Afghans

In his Al-Watan article, editor Jamal Khashoggi discussed President Karzai's appeal to King 'Abdallah, and wondered about Saudi Arabia's chances of success in Afghanistan. He stated that, while Saudi Arabia has an advantage in its good relations with Afghanistan, it also has a bitter experience with the extremist Taliban members there. According to Khashoggi, "To advance its current peace initiative, Saudi Arabia can take advantage of the Afghan nation's good memories from the period of Russian occupation and the jihad [against Russia], when Saudi Arabia provided [Afghanistan with] military, diplomatic, and financial support... [On the other hand,] there has been no special connection between Saudi Arabia and the Taliban, except during a temporary trial period of contact lasting only three years... There is no cause to be excessively optimistic, since our experience with the Taliban has been bitter, considering that they – or at least their leaders – operate according to the principle of 'all or nothing'...

"Saudi Arabia's thorough understanding of the situation in Afghanistan, thanks to its [past] activities and experiences there, is the main reason for Karzai's request for Saudi mediation. Saudi Arabia understands Afghanistan's diversity... The Taliban's inclusion in this diverse [political array] would be considered an accomplishment, especially since [this organization itself] is not altogether homogenous... What Saudi Arabia and the region as a whole have to gain, strategically, is the isolation of Al-Qaeda, which, as a result of the ascent of the Pakistani Taliban, poses an ever-increasing security threat to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia's strategic ally to the east. Saudi Arabia must act on this. Aside from a political [victory], the elimination of Al-Qaeda, its attitudes, and its doctrines, signifies first and foremost a victory for Islam. The road ahead is a long one, [and it must be remembered] that the war is not a military one, but a war of ideas and beliefs."[13]    

Saudi Criticism of U.S. Management of Afghanistan War

The announcement of Obama's decision to reinforce U.S. troops in Afghanistan [14] and ratchet up their military activities there was greeted in the Saudi press with a wave of criticism over U.S. disregard of the Saudi recommendations for negotiations with the Taliban. [15] Operation Moshtarak, an offensive carried out by combined NATO and Afghan army troops against Taliban strongholds in the south of the country, was likewise met with criticism over the war's continuation. Al-Watan claimed that the NATO offensive would deteriorate the situation in the Afghanistan-Pakistan arena, disrupting the Saudi mediation initiative before it had a chance to gather momentum. The daily reiterated Saudi disappointment at the U.S. rejection of the recommendations made by Turki Al-Faisal, asserting that Saudi Arabia would intervene only on its own terms: "The deteriorating situation in the Pakistan-Afghanistan arena does not bode well. Most analyses [of the situation] suggest that matters will continue to decline... Military intervention and the solution [it offers] represent one alternative, diametrically opposed to the alternative of negotiations. This analysis is relevant to the situation in Afghanistan, where, ten years after the first coalition forces arrived, Al-Qaeda remains active... The most obvious proof of the failure of international policy in dealing with the overall situation is the Afghan president's recent appeal to Saudi Arabia to intervene and mediate in resolving this crisis.

"The tribal areas in southern Afghanistan and northern Pakistan have become an independent emirate, or a sort of autonomy, and this must be recognized, albeit tacitly. That is the reality on the ground... which is the reason for Saudi Arabia's demands to reassess the policy being followed, especially the [push for] military resolution, which has exacerbated the mutual violence... Reviewing some of the ideas published by Prince Turki Al-Faisal on this matter, [one will find] the most feasible plan of action for dealing with the ever-deteriorating Pakistan-Afghanistan region.

"[In previous situations] Saudi Arabia has served as mediator in the service of Islam, without any ulterior motives of its own, and is capable of doing the same again, as long as it is in accordance with its own positions and perspective. The latest offensive by NATO forces in Helmand, which was the largest military operation since the arrival of coalition [forces] in Afghanistan, does not very well serve efforts to initiate a Saudi mediation."[16]

Saudi Columnists Harshly Criticize U.S. Policy

Saudi columnists leveled even harsher criticism at the U.S., condemning its military operations in Afghanistan. Al-Madina columnist Sa'id Muhammad Habib accused the U.S. of war crimes in Afghanistan, while lauding the Afghan combatants who, according to his statement, have a history of routing all occupying forces: "[There are] early signs of an immense, resonating defeat that will be dealt to the U.S. and to its NATO-member allies in Afghanistan by that same great Muslim nation... which has stood [throughout history] in arms against every imperialist...

"The difference between the past and the present [situation] lies in military technology: [today] the 'smart' bombs and deadly rockets dropped by the American planes take the lives of dozens and even hundreds of Afghans and Pakistanis in an instant... most of them defenseless civilians... Despite all this, the outcome of the Afghanistan war will reveal, if Allah should will it, the outright failure and defeat [of the U.S. and NATO]... The London Conference revealed the extent of distress felt by the international community regarding America's war on Afghanistan. Notwithstanding all the resources being spent on Obama's 'good' war there, this war is lost, [even] according to the commanders of the U.S. military... The U.S. will not be able to continue its war crimes in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and other countries, and to operate according to hypocritical policies and despicable double standards, and still maintain the support of the people. Its corrupt policies ensure its defeat. The great nation of Afghanistan will prove its allegiance to Islam, not to the dollar... The prestige of America and NATO will crumble into the dust of Afghanistan, until the U.S. withdraws, receding back into itself. Today the historic role [of the U.S.] has passed to other [nations]. The world recognizes China's status, as it continues defy the U.S., which is arming Taiwan".[18]

*R. Green is a research fellow at MEMRI.

[1] Reuters, February 2, 2010.
[2] Al-Jazirah (Saudi Arabia), December 9, 2009. It should be noted that Pakistan's importance to Saudi Arabia became particularly apparent when the Saudi press went out of its way to defend this country following the terrorist attacks in Mumbai in November, 2008. See MEMRI I&A No. 478,"Concerned About Pakistan's Future, Saudi Press Rallies to Prevent India-Pakistan Escalation," December 5, 2009,
[3] Al-Sharq Al-Awsat (London), March 11, 2010; Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), May 25, 2009.
[4] Al-Jazirah (Saudi Arabia), June 4, 2009. King 'Abdallah also discussed the Afghanistan issue in his meetings with Dennis Ross and Richard Holbrooke. In addition, the issue was addressed at a meeting between Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Al-Riyadh (Saudi Arabia), April 27, 2009; Al-Riyadh (Saudi Arabia), May 18, 2009; Al-Sharq Al-Awsat (London), December 8, 2009.
[5] Al-Hayat (London), November 25, 2009 .
[6] Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), February 16, 2010 .
[7] The Observer (Britain), September 28, 2008; Al-Sharq Al-Awsat (London), November 17, 2009. Recently, The Guardian published a report on the attempts of former Arab mujahideen, working in cooperation with Saudi attorneys over the past four years, to make preparations for talks between the Karzai government and the Taliban. According to the report, the Saudi royal family secretly has backed these attempts since 2008.
[8] Al-Hayat (London), February 3, 2010.
[9] Times of India (India), March 1, 2010.
[10] Washington Post (USA), October 8, 2009, .
[11] Al-Faisal also proposed re-drawing the borderlines between Pakistan and Afghanistan and setting up a joint security network  shared by Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, with the aim of eliminating Al-Qaeda's leadership.
[12] Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), November 25, 2009.
[13] Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), February 3, 2010.
[15] See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 2579, "Saudi Criticism of President Obama's Afghanistan Policy," January 20, 2010,
[16] Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), February 14, 2010.
[17] Al-Medina (Saudi Arabia), February 6, 2010.