Sunday, July 30, 2017

GCC is split forever

You may think that the split of the GCC is now only between Qatar and the rest. In fact, there are several camps already: Saudi and UAE regimes are one front (Bahrain automatically follows SA), while Qatar is another front.  Kuwait and Oman constitute a separate neutral front but is more inclined toward Qatar.  Saudi regime started to take swipes at Kuwait neutrality.  Also, the split between Saudi and UAE regimes is not new.  There has been a very popular hashtag in the last two days saying "Son of Fahd (in reference to Prince `Abdul-`Aziz bin Fahd) whips UAE, again" (it is in Arabic).  This Saudi prince has basically been tweeting strong denunciations of the UAE and of Muhammad bin Zayid personally.  This prince has also been very vocal in support of the Palestinians and even of "Jihad" on behalf of the Palestinians and is invoking past policies of the Saudi regime.  This is a clear swipe at his own government.  There also has been a very popular hashtag among Saudis saying: "Al-`Utaybah wants Saudi Arabia to be secular", this was a swipe at the UAE ambassador in DC as he said this week that Saudi Arabia wants to be secular. People were furious at this and `Abdul-`Aziz bin Fahd has the power to express opposition.  Not sure how long Muhammad bin Salman will tolerate the opposition of this influential prince.  It is said that Ahmad bin `Abdul-`Aziz is now the center of the royal opposition but publicly it has been `Abdul-`Aziz.