What will be keenly watched in the period ahead, therefore, is how the new alchemy transforms Russian-Saudi relationship on the whole, especially given the backdrop of cloud of uncertainty hanging heavily on US-Saudi ties at present.
Soros’ retreat from Turkey might be a harbinger of what’s to come because President Erdogan commands tremendous respect among the international Muslim community or “Ummah”, so other Muslim governments might be inspired by his leadership in fearlessly calling out the “Open Society Foundation” and seek to emulate his example.
Make no mistake, Trump is going out of the way to help MBS survive and is not taking chances. He even blocked the CIA Director from attending a US Senate hearing on Khashoggi murder, fearing that it might provoke Saudi retaliation against American interests on vital issues such as the world oil market.
Israel, the GCC, and the US all share common strategic interests in the Kurdish-controlled regions of northeastern Syria vis-à-vis Turkey, so Ankara has every reason to suspect that they might be jointly plotting against it from that part of its neighboring country. Serious concerns about this long-term strategic scenario might therefore help explain Turkey’s reorientation away from the West.
If the White Helmets involvement in the attack on Aleppo is proved, however, and especially if the Syrian Foreign Ministry’s claim regarding the origin of the militants’ chemical arsenal turns out to be true, then the notion of the White Helmets will be completely turned on its head, as will the role of the American-led coalition in the Syrian conflict.
Austria currently holds the EU’s rotating six-month presidency until the end of the year, meaning that Vienna veritably has agenda-setting powers that could therefore place the bloc on the course of developing a more pro-Israeli policy by 2019 that would dovetail with the US’ own.
Why Christianne Boudreau, born in Toronto, the mother of a young Damian Clairmont who had been indoctrinated and recruited to join a terrorist group in Syria, is forced by the Canadian government to surrender her Canadian passport. Why is Canada denying this woman her right to travel, guaranteed to all citizens under the Canadian Charter?
While it’s obvious that many European countries and part of the US’ “deep state” would probably back Prince Ahmed if he replaced Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman in Saudi Arabia, there are serious doubts about whether the Kingdom’s military and intelligence services would also support it.
Much water has flown down the Euphrates since the 9th round of the Astana Process took place in May. Six months is a long time in politics – especially in Middle East politics. But, paradoxically, while Middle Eastern politics is in turmoil, the prospects for peace in Syria may have improved.
The real situation in the world today shows that there are too many doctrinal and military-technical obstacles preventing the complete and irreversible elimination of all nuclear weapons. There has also been no noticeable increase in the level of trust between nuclear-armed states, which all have different views on nuclear arms control and the doctrinal basis for their actual use.
The larger pattern that’s becoming apparent is that the UK is seeking to reestablish itself as an important economic and military power in the Indian Ocean Region, albeit on a much lesser scale than what it used to be but nevertheless still playing a part in this increasingly competitive area through which most of the world’s trade traverses.
Turkey is beginning to feel like its notional American “ally” is “containing” it despite the incipient rapprochement that the two Great Powers are presently involved in, and it thinks that blustering against what it suspects are the US-backed plans of its Greek and Cypriot neighbors will scare them off and succeed in calling the US’ bluff.