The Saudi purges hit the DC lobbyists
Caroline Glick provides essential background and context (read here or here) for understanding the purge underway in Saudi Arabia and its impact on us. Along the way, she considers our very own D.C. lobbyists and reveals information that is on the record yet, as James Lewis pointed out to me, is almost never mentioned in the media:
Saudi government spending on lobbyists in Washington far outstrips that of any other nation. According to Justice Department disclosures from earlier this year, since 2015, Saudi Arabia vastly increased its spending on influence peddling. According to a report by The Intercept, "Since 2015, the Kingdom has expanded the number of foreign agents on retainer to 145, up from 25 registered agents during the previous two-year period."
In the past, they were able to get their money's worth when it counted.
Saudi lobbyists shielded the kingdom from serious criticism after 15 of the 19 September 11 hijackers were shown to be Saudi nationals. They blocked a reconsideration of the US's strategic alliance with Saudi Arabia after the attacks and in subsequent years, even as it was revealed that Princess Haifa, wife of Prince Bandar, the Saudi ambassador to Washington at the time the September 11 attacks occurred, had financially supported two of the hijackers in the months that preceded the attacks.
K Street (photo credit).
Read the whole thing, and then realize that the tap is being cut off for the lobbying and much, much else financed by rogue royals. Members of the family have been funding the spear and the shield of fundamentalist Islam overseas, and if Mohammed bin Salman stays in power, that will end.
While many of the officials arrested over the weekend threaten Mohammed [bin Salman]'s power, they aren't the only ones that he has purged. In September Mohammed arrested some 30 senior Wahhabist clerics and intellectuals. And Saturday's arrest of the princes, cabinet ministers and business leaders was followed up by further arrests of senior Wahhabist clerics.
There is a lot at stake in Saudi Arabia. This is essential reading.