It’s time to ex­ploit Saudi fear of Ha­mas

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS - JOHN R BRADLEY

IF POL­I­TICS makes for strange bed­fel­lows, war­fare can cre­ate a ver­i­ta­ble orgy of seem­ingly un­fath­omable diplomatic dal­liances.

One such ap­par­ent se­cret tryst, be­tween Is­raeli and Saudi diplo­mats, is now un­der the spot­light, as sup­port­ers of Ha­mas in the West ac­cuse the Al-Sauds of treach­ery by snug­gling up to the Jewish state.

Ha­mas cheer­leader David Hearst, who ed­its the web­site Mid­dle East Eye, last week ac­cused the Al-Sauds of shed­ding “crocodile tears” over Pales­tinian civil­ian deaths while do­ing ev­ery­thing it could diplo­mat­i­cally to help the IDF crush the Is­lamist mili­tia.

In a cut­ting re­tort, the Saudi am­bas­sador to Lon­don, Prince Mo­hammed bin Nawaf , de­nied any such meet­ings were tak­ing place, out­side of re­gion­wide ef­forts to at­tain a cease­fire.

And, un­like Mr Hearst, he em­pha­sised the Wah­habi king­dom’s sup­port for the Pales­tini­ans with­out sin­gling out Ha­mas, draw­ing a sen­si­ble dis­tinc­tion.

He even stated that Saudi out­rage was on be­half of or­di­nary Chris­tian and Mus­lim Pales­tini­ans — thus sub­tly re­mind­ing us that Ha­mas it­self has given its sup­port to the ji­hadists in Iraq and Syria who have mor­phed into the Is­lamic State. The lat­ter group is presently shoot­ing, bea­head­ing and cru­ci­fy­ing ev­ery Arab Chris­tian they can get their grubby hands on.

There are, of course, a mil­lion rea­sons for Is­rael to loathe the Saudi rul­ing fam­ily; but realpoli­tik means they cur­rently have a com­mon en­emy.

The Is­lamic State is de­ter­mined to de­stroy Is­rael, and mas­sacre not only all the Jews who live there but, based on its track record, the Chris­tian Pales­tinian Arabs too. Mean­while, it wants the Arab oil monar­chies over­thrown.

Un­like Qatar, which Is­raeli officials re­cently sin­gled out as the main spon­sor of Is­lamist ter­ror­ism in the Mid­dle East, the Wah­habi king­dom has at last be­gun to learn the er­ror of its historic ways. It re­cently banned its na­tion­als from flight­ing abroad, or ex­press­ing sym­pa­thy for the Is­lamic State at home, un­der threat of pub­lic bea­head­ing.

Bet­ter, then, to ex­ploit the pres­sure the Al-Sauds are un­der so they can to keep in check the cra­zier el­e­ments of the Wah­habi re­li­gious es­tab­lish­ment. As the up­heavals in Libya, Syria, Egypt, Ye­men and Iraq have clearly demon­strated, revo­lu­tion in Saudi Ara­bia would lead only to in­ter-tribal blood­shed

PHO­TOS: AP

Barack Obama with Saudi leader Ab­du­lAziz Al-Saud on ar­rival in Riyadh

Emir of Qatar, who backs Ha­mas

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