Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Patrick Cockburn may be one of the few correspondents who is not spewing the convention wisdom of Western governments

"It seems to have lost its old caution and is plunging into political snake pits without much idea of how it is going to get out of them.  Over the past year the Saudis have overplayed their hand, backing local allies and proxies in Syria and Yemen who are never going to win decisive victories. Part of this may be a Saudi over-reaction to the agreement between the US and Iran on the Iranian nuclear programme. The fall in the price of oil leading to an austerity budget has increased the incentive to beat the patriotic and religious drum in order to promote national solidarity in face of growing challenges. "