Fareed Zakaria, in an opinion piece published in the Washington Post, cautioned President Trump against aligning too closely with Saudi Arabia and its unpredictable leader, Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Zakaria cites Salman’s internal decisions – a purge of political and religious leaders under the guise of anti-corruption measures chief among them – and, more importantly, his rash yet calculated external actions as cause for American distance from the new Saudi regime.
While Salman’s moves away from the patronage system to a more centralized dictator-style regime represent a threat to what little democracy previously existed in Saudi Arabia, his warmongering agenda – including a devastating blockade of Yemen, a less effective blockade of Qatar, and interference in the Lebanese government—signifies a much more serious threat to the political stability of the already-complicated Middle East.
Zakaria finds that the strategy thus far has failed to produce the expected results and has, instead, resulted in greater instability than Salman bargained for.
The outcome, according to Zakaria, is a recipe for disaster that the U.S. must work to avoid.
To read Zakaria’s full perspective on the conflict over supporting the Saudis, see more here: Trump is in deep with Saudi Arabia. That’s dangerous.