Craig Murray looks at our evil Middle East policy – Fabius Maximus website

Craig Murray looks at our evil Middle East policy – Fabius Maximus website


Summary: Ex-British diplomat Craig Murray says obvious truths about America’s Middle East policy that are unmentionable in polite company. We should listen to his harsh words.

Group photo of Saudi Princes

Beneath Contempt

By Craig Murray at his website, 19 September 2019.
Posted with his generous permission.

The ruling caste of Saudi Arabia presents the most striking example in world history of the extreme combination of avarice and personal cowardice. They are gagging for a war with Iran so long as somebody else fights it for them. Due to a dispute over who ought to have been Caliph 1400 years ago, they are champing at the bit for somebody to massacre the Shia in the Shia heartland – provided they don’t have to do the massacring.

It is not that they object to blood on their pure white robes, they often get that when executing a bound prisoner or raping the housemaid. But the thought of their own blood being spilt is an abomination. Let some helpful young Israelis or Americans risk fighting the Iranians, while the Saudi rulers sniff their cocaine in their London penthouses.

It is not that Saudi does not have its own military. Bombing civilian Shia Houthis from a great height with no chance of retaliation is great sport {for them}. And there were some actual Saudis in some of the tanks sent in to massacre the unarmed democracy demonstrators of Bahrain. But the world’s greatest spender per capita on weapons systems has no intention that its own elite should do any fighting.

No matter how relentlessly Israel, abetted by the United States, persists in the slow genocide of the Palestinian people, Saudi will always remain a firm US and Israeli ally, because the biggest coward always hides behind the biggest bully. From that position Saudi Arabia will use all its money and influence to promote military action against Iran – by others.

The British government, having armed, supplied, trained and lent special forces to the ongoing Saudi massacre of Houthi civilians in Yemen, is horrified and full of condemnation that the Houthis have the temerity to hit back at an oil facility. The attack by drones was a brilliant bit of assymetric warfare that shows money is not everything in war. For US Vice President Mike Pence, after meeeting Mohammed Bin “Chopper” Salman, to denounce this attack as “An act of war” is pretty otiose {as did SecState Pompeo). There are many thousands of mutilated or orphaned Houthi children who could have told him there was a war on, had he bothered to talk to them rather than their oppressor.

It is an act of massive folly for the West to get drawn in to the Sunni-Shia small wars that rage across the Middle East and risk blowing them into something much larger. We do not have a “side” in an Islamic sectarian divide which everybody should be seeking to heal, not to exacerbate. There is no genuine western interest at play here other than a desire to bolster Israel and its Saudi alliance. The demonisation and crippling by sanctions of Iran, with its profound and ancient culture and massive human capital and economic potential, is a major mistake.

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A note from our past

John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams by G.P.A. Healy (1858).

John Quincy Adams gave us sound advice in his speech at the House of Representatives on 4 July 1821.

“{What} if the wise and learned philosophers of the elder world… should …enquire what has America done for the benefit of mankind? Let our answer be this: America … has held forth to them the hand of honest friendship, of equal freedom, of generous reciprocity.

  • She has uniformly spoken among them …the language of equal liberty, of equal justice, and of equal rights.
  • She has …respected the independence of other nations while asserting and maintaining her own.
  • She has abstained from interference in the concerns of others, even when conflict has been for principles to which she clings. …

“Wherever the standard of freedom and Independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will commend the general cause by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example.

“She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force.”

Since 9-11 we have ignored his advice. But we can learn from our failures and dark deeds. We can exert ourselves to regain control of the government and change its militaristic foreign policy. Let’s take a first step on this long road.

Craig Murray

About the author

Craig Murray is an author, broadcaster and human rights activist. He joined the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1984. His career culminated as British Ambassador to Uzbekistan 2002 to 2004. It ended when he criticized regime as repressive and using torture (both the American and British governments freaked out). Afterwards he was Rector of the University of Dundee from 2007 to 2010. In 2016 the US government refused to allow him entry to the US.

See his articles at his websiteSee his bio. See his Wikipedia entry – he has led an extraordinary life. One of Murray’s most interesting books is Sikunder Burnes: Master of the Great Game

. From the publisher…

“This is an astonishing true tale of espionage, journeys in disguise, secret messages, double agents, assassinations and sexual intrigue. Alexander Burnes was one of the most accomplished spies Britain ever produced and the main antagonist of the Great Game as Britain strove with Russia for control of Central Asia and the routes to the Raj.”

For More Information

Ideas! For some shopping ideas, see my recommended books and films at Amazon.

Please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For more information see all posts about Saudi Arabia, about Israel, about Iran, about our wars since 9/11, and especially these …

  1. Martin van Creveld: A history of the turmoil in the Holy Land – You can’t understand the action without it.
  2. The Fate of Israel.
  3. Stories about Saudi Arabia reveal mysteries of the world’s most powerful kingdom.
  4. Ali Shihabi explains what the media won’t about Saudi Arabia.
  5. Stratfor looks at the strange Saudi – Israel alliance.
  6. New and secret alliances reshape the Middle East.

Two timely books about Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia: A Kingdom in Peril
Available at Amazon.
Saudi, Inc.: The Arabian Kingdom's Pursuit of Profit and Power
Available at Amazon.



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