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29 January 2017

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Cee

Fred,

Yeah, same for Israel, Qatar, Dubai. Are we missing any who've supported those who created this chaos?

Cee

Fred,

I want to add that I do believe we owe a share of those fleeing certain death and persecution temporary sanctuary. It makes me furious that not enough was done to stop this regime change madness in the first place.
I only supported the initial ban on some coming from Syria and Iraqi because they weren't being properly screened... see Visas for Al Qeada.

Economic immigration. No.

Annem

History: At the end of WWI, the British gave the Hashemites kingdoms to control Iraq, Jordan and Hejaz. When Abdul-Aziz bin Saud captured the region, which includes the two Holy Cities of Mecca and Medina, the British failed to stop it the way they did when the Saudis tried to extend their power into Jordan. Oil in other parts of the peninsula was the incentive for the British to abandon Sherif Ali and his father.

Think about it: If Hejaz had remained a Hashemite kingdom, the Al Saud and their Wahhabis would not be able to use their control of the Holy Cities to legitimize their version of Islam [though they would still have the money to try.] Hejaz would most likely today resemble its nearest neighbor, Jordan, in culture and politics, perhaps poor but proud.

Mark Logan

Annem,

Correct me if I am wrong, but at that time nobody knew the region we call Saudi Arabia would ever amount to a hill of beans. Oil in quantity had not as yet been discovered there and the great need of it of today did not as yet exist. Shaming the terribly war weary post-WW1 Britain for not engaging in that struggle seems unfair. It is perhaps as unfair, but it would be better for the people of the region to take accept responsibility for their condition. Scapegoats are good for but one meal.

With all respect. I know that's a painful thing to say.

Petrous

Touche !
let the King reap the benefits of the wars he has financed for once ... though bitter they are.

HectorX

It's a temporary (90-day) ban and due to serious intel that terrorist attack imminent. I'm kind of impressed that Trump hasn't released any indication that this is the reason for the 90-day ban.

Sam Peralta

Fred

An excellent proposal!

Yes, a safe zone is necessary for the many muslims being screwed by the wahhabi cult. Maybe GHWB made a huge mistake by crushing Saddam and ejecting his forces from Kuwait. What if Saddam were allowed to keep Kuwait and take Saudi Arabia too? How would that have turned out with a secular tyrant? I doubt we'd have the liver eating head choppers running all over the place as we have now.

Henshaw

If they've got 'serious Intel', then surely they could take more specific action, rather than just reheating some broad-brush measures from the previous Administration. Strong whiff of crass opportunism about this exercise.

English Outsider


I think oil supplies were becoming a consideration from the early 20th Century partly because of the British Navy's shift from coal to oil. This started before the Great War and was in contemplation well before that.

http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a524799.pdf

The colonial powers had set their sights on the ME much earlier. In the case of Great Britain the main strategic consideration is said to be safeguarding India and the route to India. But in the ME, as with Africa, there was an underlying feeling that Empire was what you do so get on with it. Since direct conquest was in most cases impracticable the practice of fiddling around with local tribal and political animosities to gain effective control was the method of choice. The need for oil intensified that need for control.

As with Africa, this outside interference stunted the political development of the ME. Maybe inevitable, but I don't think it's justifiable to put the responsibility on the inhabitants of the region.

It's left a fearful legacy:

- The erstwhile colonial powers developed great expertise in that fiddling around with local animosities. We still have that. Although he was talking of another region, one of our Royals talked approvingly not long back of the "Great Game" we were engaged in and the fact that we're good at it, at least if you judge by the body count, and the glamour of it, rather obscures the fact that we shouldn't be doing it. We fired up local animosities in the Ukraine too, of course, and in that case it's stunted their political development as well, but that's another issue.

- Regarding "natives" as a sort of livestock to be handled as convenient led to the increased Jewish settlement in Palestine. That was thought to kill several birds with one stone - assuaged the popular resentment at the Jewish influx in London around the turn of the last century, allowed us to justify halting that influx by claiming we'd made other provision for the refugees, satisfied the Christian Zionist inclinations of some English notables, was regarded as a means of implanting Western values in a region sorely in need of them, and planted a sympathetic population near the Suez route. An ingenious response to a lot of pressures and a response that haunts us yet. Sounds evil now, at least to many of us, but it's important to understand that shifting "natives" around ad lib was quite normal in colonial times; the white settlements in Rhodesia and Kenya, for example, could not have happened without it - it was done as a matter of course - and we see it routinely done as late as 1971 in the case of the Chagos Islanders.

- It's left us even now feeling a little proprietorial about the ME. ("It's OUR oil they're sitting on. Without us they wouldn't even be able to get it out of the ground" used to be heard quite a lot and still is sometimes). I do get the impression that in our political circles at least there's still the feeling around that it's our backyard and somehow we've still got a right to arrange things there, though that sentiment these days is usually expressed, at least for PR purposes, in R2P terms.

- How conscious the resentment against this colonial interference is, how it's expressed, and how resentment is also fuelled by tribal mores coming into conflict with modern urban values, is a question best left to the ME experts here. There's no doubt, however, that many in the ME really don't like us, what we've done, or what we're doing, and that the backlash is going to hurt us.


All that in response, maybe unjustified, to your remark " .. it would be better for the people of the region to .. accept responsibility for their condition." I think some would quite like to, if we could leave them alone.

Ishmael Zechariah

Fred, Ol. Lang; SST;
This OT, but might be important: What happened in Yemen? Very little info out there.
Ishmael Zechariah

Annem

On post-WWI decisions:

First, oil was already a priority and it was one reason why the British were so keen to take and keep Mosul.

Second, apparently the British made demands on the Hashemites with regard to Hejaz they found unacceptable.

Third, after the war, the Peninsula reverted to decision-making by the Viceroy in India, not the War Office, which traditionally called the shots for the protectorates along the Gulf littoral. They later redrew the borders between Iraq, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

The Wahhabis had long demonstrated their capacity for conquest and destruction previously, including the Ottoman's sending Mohamed Ali's Egyptian army to roll them back.

If for no other reason than their potential nuisance value, the Saudis were included nominally into the free Arab forces fighting the Ottomans. What was unique about this British-dominated post-WWI period was that the al Saud were able to make their gains permanent. In their previous attempts at state-making they collapsed through over-extension. This time, Abdel-Aziz took the sage advice of the Brits and instead consolidated his power. He even had to kill off the last recalcitrant Ikhwan who wanted to continue the eternal jihad. The folly of over-extension is a weak point for contemporary "jihadis."

Cee

HectorX,

I wondered about that. This is why there was no warning.

Harper

Well stated, Fred! It really strikes me that Saudi Arabia is a presumed sovereign country--named after a tribal family that won a tribal struggle and took over. That's like Germany being called Merkelandia or France being called Hollandia or, worse yet, the United States being called United States of Trump. It is universally known that they bankroll Sunni jihadi terrorism globally, that they put up the "start up capital" for Al Qaeda and they had some convoluted link to the support for the 9/11 hijackers.

Cee

Sam,

They only eat them for the camera. They sell them and other organs on the black market.

Edward Amame

It might be an idea to show where registered Syrian refugees are as of January, 2017:

Turkey 2,724,937 (registered as of August 2016)
Lebanon 1,500,000 (estimated arrivals as of Dec 2015)
1,048,275 (registered)
Jordan 1,265,000 (census results as of Nov 2015)
657,422 (registered July 2016)[6]
Germany 600,000 (total by late 2016 since 2014)
429,000(registered by late 2016)
Saudi Arabia 500,000 Syrian (estimated overstays as of 2016)
Greece 496,119 (arrivals to May 2016)
54,574 (estimated in country May 2016)
5,615 (applicants to Dec 2015)
Macedonia 400,000 (estimated arrivals)
2,150 (applicants to December 2015)
Serbia (incl. Kosovo) 313,314 (applicants to December 2015)
Iraq (incl. Iraqi Kurdistan) 230,836 (registered in whole Iraq)
United Arab Emirates 242,000 (estimated overstays 2015)
Kuwait 155,000+[8][15] (estimated overstays to June 2015)
Egypt 117,702 (registered by March 2016)
119,665 (UNHCR estimate as of March 2016)
500,000 (Egypt MFA estimate as of September 2016)
Sweden 110,333 (applicants to December 2015)
Hungary 72,505 (applicants to December 2015)
Canada 61,886 (applicants to Dec 2016)
43,589 (approved as of Dec 2016)
39,902 (resettled as of Dec 2016)
Croatia 55,000 (estimated as of September 2015)
386 (applicants to December 2015)
Algeria 43,000 (estimated as of November 2015)
5,721 (registered as of November 2015)
Qatar 40,000 (estimated overstays 2015)
42 (registered)
Austria 39,131 (applicants to July 2016)
Netherlands 31,963 (applicants to July 2016)
Libya 26,672 (registered as of December 2015)
Armenia 20,000 (estimated as of October 2016)
Denmark 19,433 (applicants to December 2015)
Bulgaria 17,527 (applicants to December 2015)
United States 16,218 (resettled by November 2016)
Belgium 16,986 (applicants to July 2016)
Norway 13,993 (applicants to December 2015)
Singapore 13,856 (applicants to December 2015)
Switzerland 12,931 (applicants to July 2016)
France 11,694 (applicants to July 2016)
Brazil 9,000 (approved)
2,097 (as of November 2015)
United Kingdom 9,467 (applicants to July 2016)
5,102 (resettled as of August 2015)
Spain 8,365 (applicants to December 2015)
Russia 5,000 (estimated in 2015)
Malaysia 5,000 (estimated in August 2015)[citation needed]
Australia 4,500 (2015)
Tunisia 4,000 (September 2015)
Cyprus 3,527 (applicants to December 2015)
Bahrain 3,500 (estimated June 2015)
Argentina 3,000 (approved)
Montenegro 2,975 (applicants to December 2015)
Italy 2,538 (applicants to December 2015)
Romania 2,525 (applicants to December 2015)
Malta 1,222 (applicants to December 2015)
Somalia 1,312 (as of January 2016)
Finland 1,127 (as of December 2015)


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refugees_of_the_Syrian_Civil_War

Fred

Edward,

Let me know when any of the millions of "refugees" sign up with the Free Syrian Army. Had 10% of them done so they would have won that war long ago.

BTW the basis of the wikipedia entry: Document Not Found
http://www.unhcr.org/52b2febafc5.html
This actual UN website shows "all other countries" which includes Saudi Arabia, presumably, account for 14% of registered refugees.
http://data.unhcr.org/syrianrefugees/regional.php

The conduct of the Autocrat of the Kingdom hasn't changed. I stand by my point, Free Mecca.

Edward Amame

Fred

What about the 1.5% of the nearly 5 million Syrian refugees that the UNHCR has registered who are Christian? Should they go to Mecca too? Or can they come here? Oops, I forgot, the U.S. gov't doesn't discriminate on the basis of religion in refugee admission.

Also, if you go to the Wiki page I linked to again, you will see footnotes that indicate where each of the figures cited came from.

turcopolier

EA

It sounds to me that you are not in favor of sovereign countries who control their own borders and immigration. pl

Fred

EA,


If you have followed footnote 1 you would have wound up right were document not found was located.
Since the citizens of the Republic spoke with on election day and President is following the will of the people that the US control its borders I recommend you make a call for volunteers amongst the member states:
http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0001295.html

In addition when the SAR wins that war all those people can go home again.

Croesus

It was my understanding that pilgrimages were money-making opportunities for the host state, and WWI caused visits to the Holy sites to decline precipitously, causing Saudi leaders to look more favorably at British offers to buy oil leases.

Edward Amame

Col Lang

It would probably be ideal if all refugees wound up settling back in their own regions. Something like 56% of Syrian refugees do. It would be helpful, if as Fred suggests, some of the other nations in the region would step up (besides Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey). I'm certain that a number of these refugees aren't "innocents," but would guess that the vast majority are, esp considering how many are women and children.

Yes, countries have a right to control their own borders. Even countries that have a hand in upsetting the apple cart and then don't want to take in the people who got stuck in the middle of their shitshows. So, what's to do?

Thomas

"It was my understanding that pilgrimages were money-making opportunities for the host state, and WWI caused visits to the Holy sites to decline precipitously, causing Saudi leaders to look more favorably at British offers to buy oil leases."

Actually it was the Great Depression that led to the drop in the Hajj revenues, the key source for the kingdom. Kim Philby's father convinced him to open up to the oil concessions to get much needed cash to keep the tribes mollified (ain't nothing new under the sun).

After completing the deal, Abdul Aziz, reflecting his cultural life, asked the drillers to notify him immediately if they happened to strike water.

paul

i don't know if this is tongue in cheek, and i am what some here might call a "muslim lovin lefty", but i can't help but find a certain charm to this solution, and if it had real international backing it would, or could bring about a world revolution.

so here is what struck my brain.

to send Syrian refugees to mecca, and lets throw in all Muslim refugees in the world who willingly go along with the plan(can be given incentives) and i think if it was serious many would.

so we the western powers now have(total world wide figures differ) but lets say anywhere from 5-15 million well fed well clothed Muslim refugees on a whole ton of nice transport ships. and we send them on the Haj!

now you have the holiest islamic place on earth with just about every kind of muslim in the world, and what are they going to do?


.... make a safe zone??? nope.
they will proclaim the sovereignty of Islam.
mulch, or kingship was never look upon with favor in Islam, and the reaction of Islamic law as the foundation of Islamic society against kingship, and done so by all the diverse law schools, in the holiest place on earth, could easily set off revoultions across the world. and it will make the arab spring look like OWS

then they hold elections for caliph and we are in a new world, how much of the muslim world this new caliphate could adsorb is probably substantial given the tenuous regimes most of them have, maybe over several years or maybe over night.

and i don't see anything in sunni islam against a democratic caliphate, infact quite the opposite, the caliph was originally mean to be agreed upon by all, and then it was replaced with "representatives" of all muslims, and then it just became the army.


but of coarse this will never happen, i though if it does i called it here first.

Fred

paul,

"...if it was serious many would." That would only be capable of those followers of Islam wanting a reformation. (That's what ISIS thinks it is doing, reforming (purifying) the religion). It sure can't come out of the District of Columbia.

Macgupta123

Nice manifesto!

But given that the Prophet took refuge in Medina, would "free Medina!" Have more resonance, as Muslim refugees would be emulating the Prophet?

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