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By MARTIN SIEFF
WASHINGTON, May 22 (UPI) -- The U.S. presidential election may have been decided in Riyadh last Friday. U.S. President George W. Bush asked King Abdullah bin Abdelaziz of Saudi Arabia to use his country's power as the global swing producer of oil to bring down skyrocketing global petroleum prices -- and the king said "No." Since then, global oil prices have soared to an amazing $135 a barrel on Thursday.

Saudi production will rise from its current level of 9.15 million barrels a day to 9.45 million barrels a day next month, Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said on May 16. And that will be it. Such a small increase will not significantly affect the current soaring price levels.

Given the way Bush has treated, and continues to treat, the Saudis and their greatest national security concerns, the slap in the face he received from the Saudi monarch should come as no surprise. Bush rushed ahead with the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, ignoring Saudi pleas not to do it. He and his policymakers confidently brushed aside all Saudi advice and warnings not to empower the Shiite majority in Iraq, not to disband the old Iraqi army, not to allow chaos, anarchy and looting to explode across Iraq. They paid for their arrogance with the ongoing guerrilla violence that has plagued Iraq for more than five years since then.

Even on his latest trip to the region, Bush continued to recite his old mantra that democracy and women's rights had to spread more rapidly across the region, ignoring the repeatedly documented fact that the only people to benefit from forcing democratic elections too rapidly in Muslim societies have been al-Qaida, Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. After nearly seven and a half years in the White House, this president of the United States still does not seem to have grasped the basic principle that in international negotiations and diplomacy, you have to give people what they want in order to get from them the concessions that you want.

But the Saudi stubbornness in maintaining high oil prices has far more profound political and strategic implications. For the past 40 years Saudi rulers generally have preferred to deal with Republican presidents in the United States than Democratic ones. The heights of the U.S.-Saudi special relationship were achieved under GOP presidents Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush, the father of the current president.

Saudi policymakers and leaders have tended to distrust Democratic presidents and their secretaries of state as idealistic, unworldly and heedlessly disruptive do-gooders, spreading havoc in their region without quite realizing what they were doing. However, over the past seven and a half years, that has been their consistent perception of Bush and most of his policymakers.

Clearly, the Saudis have had enough. They know that if global oil prices remain at their current unprecedented levels of $135 a barrel, the effect on domestic gasoline prices in the United States and the consequent effect over the summer and fall on the U.S. economy will be devastating. And they also clearly know that the American public's outrage at the Republican administration that failed to prevent all this hardship will almost certainly doom the hopes of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., to succeed Bush come November.

The clear political beneficiary of King Abdullah's determination to keep oil prices high is, therefore, the Democratic front-runner, who looks increasingly certain to win his party's presidential nomination in Denver this August, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois. If the Saudis want McCain to win, they will act in the coming months to put lots more crude oil into the global marketplace, but there is no sign that they will do any such thing.

Where Bush pursued a "surge" strategy of pumping more U.S. troops into Iraq, the Saudis appear to have decided to pursue their own "no surge" strategy of refusing to pump more oil in order to bring down prices. Without Saudi cooperation, neither Bush nor McCain appears to have any idea how to bring down global oil prices over the next few months, as they must, if they want to have any chance of preventing Obama from winning the White House.

http://www.upi.com/news/issueoftheday/2008/05/22/analysis_the_saudis_vote_for_obama/7305/
 

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That's gratitude for saving there ass the first time against Sadam. ::FF::
 

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I am truely amazed that so many american THINK Saudi Arabia is a US Friendly Nation. The funding for the western part of Irag fighters was tracked to Saudi Arabia. How many of the Twin Towers hijackers were Saudi's 16 of the 19, right? Where is Bin Laden from? Saudi Arabia has and continues to support terrorest groups.

The only reason Bush likes them is cuz they bailed him out when his company was going belly up prior to him being president.
 

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That's not fair to Bush, name me a President that didn't kiss saudi butt.
 

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TA OK.

Washington, George, Adams, John, Jefferson, Thomas, Madison, James,
Monroe, James, Adams, John Quincy, Jackson, Andrew, Van Buren, Martin, Harrison, William Henry, Tyler, John, Polk, James, Taylor, Zachary, Fillmore, Millard, Pierce, Franklin, Buchanan, James
Lincoln, Abraham, Johnson, Andrew, Grant, Ulysses S.


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Saudi ass started being kissed in 1973, and our nose has been very brown ever sense. It will continue to be brown until the oil runs out.... Then the middle east will return to about the same status it had before WW II. Oil was discovered in Saudi Arabia in 1938. But it wasn't until after WW II and after the United States built the oil field infrastructure that allowed them to get the grip they have on us now.....
 
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