Who are the useful idiots? The Saudis or the Americans?
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has come to the defense of Saudi Arabia against domestic and international criticism after 770 pilgrims died in a stampede during the hajj at the beginning of Eid al-Adha last week.
So the discussion about how to make the Saudi regime accountable for its mistakes or whether the Islamic world should be looking for ways to improve the organization for the hajj pilgrimage is now over in Turkey, as no one from the government can dare to contradict Erdoğan.
It would have been naïve to expect any different behavior from Erdoğan, as accountability and transparency are not his favorite concepts.
Some diehard opponents of Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the Western/European circles who do not miss any opportunity to criticize might again target Turkey for coming to the defense of an absolute monarchy, a medieval theocracy.
But they should rather target their own governments. It is obvious that the members of the Islamic world (and some among them are not any better than the Saudis) are not at the position of challenging Saudi Arabia’s anachronistic regime. If the Saudis remain untouchable, it is thanks to the U.S.-Europe-Israel troika.
This troika might find a useful idiot in the Saudis. After all as important players, the Saudis make sure that the Islamic world remains backward and in disarray forever.
Who would want a united front supporting the Palestinians against Israel? Who would want a democratic secular change in the region that would bring accountable governments in the Middle East, which would be questioned by their people about the billion dollar armament purchases from the West?
Which ideology is more benign: that of the Saudis or the Iranians?
Saudis also remain a key ally to the Western troika because it counterbalances Iran, the arch enemy of Israel. In addition, Iran is trying to export its “vicious” ideology.
Yet, it is okay (in the eyes of Westerners) for Saudis to export the extreme Wahhabi form of Islam! “It is more benign!” Is it? Not really!
There is so much rhetoric about fight against (Islamist/fundamentalist) terrorism in the West. Yet, the West’s allies are up to their necks in their complicity with terrorism. There are serious charges of financial support from some of the Saudi royal family for terrorist networks.
Wikileaks cables portrayed Saudi Arabia as a cash machine for terrorists. “Donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide,” wrote former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a secret memo.
Turkey has been the target of criticism for turning a blind eye to the passage of jihadists to Syria. Yet, the Western public plays the three monkeys in the face of Saudi support for terrorism, a fact that has remained an open secret for the last decade. In this sense, it is the Western players who become useful idiots for the Saudis.
Iranian reconciliation could make Saudis more aggressive
The current alarming issue is that with the İranian reconciliation, the Saudis can endorse policies that could be further detrimental for the region and for the rest of the world.
The 9/11 attacks should have shown us that there is no peace in one corner of the world if there is war in another corner. But it seems we have not gotten the lesson. Now it is the refugee crisis that should prove that there is no such thing as a “fortressed Europe.” As the Turkish saying goes, you can’t sleep with a full stomach when your neighbors go to bed hungry.
It’s about time to say “the king is naked!”