I servizi segreti traggono il loro nome proprio dal fatto che devono lavorare nell’ombra, in modo del tutto illegale. Nessun governo mai ammetterà che i servizi del proprio stato siano solo una banda criminale al servizio della ragion di stato, ma nei fatti sono segreti proprio perché le loro azioni sono tutte illegali.
Il loro personale è composto da gente pratica, che sa come funziona il mondo e di quale razza sia il cuore e la mente umana.
Scoperto un reato, la polizia e la magistratura si attivano per identificare il colpevole e processarlo. I servizi segreti al contrario registrano tutto e tengono in archivio: useranno quei documenti per ricattare la persona. Sempre poi che non siano stati loro stessi ad indurla al reato. Il caso Stracher dovrebbe essere ben chiaro, così come il caso Palamara in Italia.
Il termine russo ‘kompromat‘, компромат, indica un dossier contenente informazioni, documenti, o altri materiali riguardanti un uomo politico, o altro personaggio di rilevanza pubblica, il cui contenuto, se divulgato, sarebbe in grado di denigrarne la figura o metterla in cattiva luce, magari portarla alle dimissioni, se non a processo. Negli Stati Uniti questa tecnica va sotto il nome di opposition research.
Si resta soltanto esterrefatti della grande moltitudine di gente importante che cade in trappole tutto sommato banali: lo honey trapping è proprio trappola per pollastri, parlare ‘liberamente’ al cellulare o con persone sconosciute è appannaggio dei presuntuosi pieni di sé stessi.
Da molti punti di vista, sono più potenti i capi dei servizi segreti che gli stessi governanti, tranne i rari casi in cui le due figure siano assommate nella stessa persona, come nel caso di Mr Putin.
* * * * * * *
«A summit of the three national security advisors from the United States, Israel and Russia will be held in June 2019 in Jerusalem. This unique event has already given rise to numerous «revelations» and «denials» about the subjects which will be discussed. Almost all commentators are spreading erroneous ideas which are then copied in unison.»
«Russia has been present in the Levant (except for the period 1991-2011) since Tsarina Catherine II, who, at the request of the inhabitants of the region, sent its Navy to defend Beïrut»
«In 2011, Russia was the only state which distinguished the colour revolutions in the Maghreb (the «Arab Springs») from the wars against Libya and Syria.»
«The Western powers, who have their own explanation of these events, still have not made the effort to understand their interpretation by Russia»
«there are two totally different readings of the facts»
«it was not the Russians, but Western imperialism which created the problem we are facing today.»
«Finally, Washington and Moscow met in Geneva, in presence of the Western powers but the absence of the Middle Eastern actors, to formalise a shared suzerainty over the Middle East. That was in June 2012. The honeymoon lasted no more than a few days. It was destroyed by France, acting on behalf of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.»
«Finally, Washington and Moscow met in Geneva, in presence of the Western powers but the absence of the Middle Eastern actors, to formalise a shared suzerainty over the Middle East. That was in June 2012. The honeymoon lasted no more than a few days. It was destroyed by France, acting on behalf of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.»
«From the beginning of the Cold War, the United States, busy with their policy of containment of the Soviets, were perfectly aware of this Israeli expansionism which upset the stability of the region. They armed Syria so that it could resist Israel – not attack it – and also armed other forces, including Iraq. It was Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, and no-one else, who created the « Axis of Resistance ». In this way, he guaranteed that Syria and Iraq would not turn to the USSR in order to defend themselves and to obtain its military assistance»
«The religious leaders of Iran often use the expression «Axis of Resistance» to designate the alliance against Israel. Yet there exists no treaty formalising this axis. The leaders have never held a summit to discuss it»
«John Bolton (USA), Meir Ben-Shabbat (Israel) and Nikolaï Patrouchev (Russia), the three national Security advisors, have the same functions, but not the same experience.»
«Bolton is persuaded of the ontological superiority of his country over all others …. he is quite capable of stepping back when he thinks he is wrong»
«Meir Ben-Shabbat is a man of faith, persuaded, in his case, that he belongs to a chosen but cursed people. He is not a diplomat, but an expert in counter-espionage. However, he directed the Shin Bet,»
«Nikolaï Patrouchev is a lord of the superior Russian public civil service. Of the three advisors, he is without doubt the man who has the clearest view of the world chess-board. When he succeeded Vladimir Putin at the head of the FSB, he had to face up to attempts by the United States and Israel to steal his directors»
«He then had to handle the destabilisation of Ukraine by the United States and the European Union, which was finally terminated by the adhesion of Crimea to the Russian Federation.»
«He will not be negotiating one dossier against another, but on the contrary, will take care that all the decisions taken will be coherent»
* * * * * * *
Cosa abbia prodotto questo summit non è dato saperlo.
Ma se in questa evenienza fosse valido il proverbio ‘post hoc, ergo propter hoc‘, si potrebbe trovare una spiegazione dell’inusitata attività diplomatica di queste tre nazioni.
A summit of the three national security advisors from the United States, Israel and Russia will be held in June 2019 in Jerusalem. This unique event has already given rise to numerous « revelations » and « denials » about the subjects which will be discussed. Almost all commentators are spreading erroneous ideas which are then copied in unison. We have to rectify this situation before evaluating what is at stake in the summit.
The game of the major Powers in the region
During the Cold War, the US strategy of containment managed to counter Soviet influence in the Middle East. After the collapse of the USSR, Russia withdrew from the region, and only returned during the Western war against Syria.
Russia has been present in the Levant (except for the period 1991-2011) since Tsarina Catherine II, who, at the request of the inhabitants of the region, sent its Navy to defend Beïrut. Its policy was aimed primarily at protecting the the foundation of Russian culture, the cradle of Christianity (which is in Damascus, not Jerusalem). By doing so, Russia extended its influence in the Eastern Mediterranean and entered into the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.
In 2011, Russia was the only state which distinguished the colour revolutions in the Maghreb (the « Arab Springs ») from the wars against Libya and Syria. The Western powers, who have their own explanation of these events, still have not made the effort to understand their interpretation by Russia. The point here is not to determine who is right and who is wrong – that is another subject – but to admit that there are two totally different readings of the facts. We should note that the Western powers agree that Moscow has not accepted the way in which they violated the resolution intended to protect the civil populations in Libya. They therefore recognise that it was not the Russians, but Western imperialism which created the problem we are facing today.
On the basis of its own analysis, Russia began to oppose its veto to the Western resolutions concerning Syria at the Security Council. Simultaneously, at the request of Syria, it began negotiations with Damascus with a view to deploying peace-keeping troops from the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) in Syria. Finally, Washington and Moscow met in Geneva, in presence of the Western powers but the absence of the Middle Eastern actors, to formalise a shared suzerainty over the Middle East. That was in June 2012. The honeymoon lasted no more than a few days. It was destroyed by France, acting on behalf of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Seven years later, Moscow demanded its due. Indeed, it was Russia – not the CSTO – which had deployed its military in Syria and, together with the Syrian Arab Army and Hezbollah, had defeated the jihadists – and absolutely not Washington and its allies who, on the contrary, had armed them. Russia claimed its part from Jerusalem, because a million Russian- speakers are Israeli citizens, and because one of them, Avigdor Lieberman, has recently caused the fall of Netanyahu’s government – twice.
This evolution is difficult to admit for those who are still thinking in terms of the US/Israeli alliance which characterised the Bush Jr. era. Nonetheless, since the defeat of Daesh, the Israeli authorities have visited Moscow much more frequently than Washington.
The game of the regional powers facing Israel
It is accepted as self-evident that the forces of the « Axis of Resistance » (Palestine-Lebanon-Syria-Iraq-Iran) are determined to annihilate the Israelis just as the Nazis were committed to destroying the Jews. This is a grotesque mash-up of copy and paste.
In reality, Hezbollah was originally a network of Chiite Resistance to the Israeli occupation of Lebanon. It was at first armed by Syria, then, after the withdrawal of the Syrian peace force from Lebanon, by Iran. Its objective was never to « push the Jews into the sea », but on the contrary, it has never ceased to affirm its intention of establishing equality for all according to the Law. The Israeli occupation of Lebanon was a reality that massively surpassed the intentions of the Israeli government, which was overtaken by General Ariel Sharon’s initiative to seize Beïrut. It was also due to the Collaboration between the Christian militias and the Lebanese Druzes, including those of Samir Geagea and Walid Joumblatt.
In the same way, Syria reacted to Israeli expansionism first of all by defending itself, then by moving to support the Palestinian populations. This was perfectly legitimate, given that what are now Palestine and Syria formed a single political entity before the First World. No-one, not even the United States, denies that for seventy years, Israel has been stealing land from its neighbours, and continues to do so.
From the beginning of the Cold War, the United States, busy with their policy of containment of the Soviets, were perfectly aware of this Israeli expansionism which upset the stability of the region. They armed Syria so that it could resist Israel – not attack it – and also armed other forces, including Iraq. It was Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, and no-one else, who created the « Axis of Resistance ». In this way, he guaranteed that Syria and Iraq would not turn to the USSR in order to defend themselves and to obtain its military assistance.
The Dwight Eisenhower administration knew that Israel was the fruit of the wishes of Woodrow Wilson and David Lloyd George, but he considered it to be a crazy horse which had to be both protected and controlled.
Washington therefore allied itself with the British ideas: the Military Assistance Programme between Damascus and Teheran, then, in 1958, the Baghdad Pact which enabled the creation of CenTO (the regional equivalent of NATO). The context has changed, the actors have changed, but the motives remain the same.
The case of Iran is the main problem today. Indeed, the majority of its leaders do not approach this question from a political point of view, but from a religious standpoint. A Chiite prophecy assures that the Jews will reform a state in Palestine, but that it will quickly be destroyed. The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, holds this text to be canon law. He follows the countdown, and has affirmed that Israel will have disappeared within six years (in 2025).
The growing tension of positions, in Iran concerning this prophecy, and in Israel concerning the « Basic Law: Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People » (2018), is the source of the continuation of this conflict, which could be unblocked with a minimum of intelligence. This is what Donald Trump and Jared Kushner tried to do, and it is here that they failed: while economic development might do away with the question of reparations, no progress could be possible without the evolution of the world visions professed by the Jews, the Arabs and the Persians.
What is the « Axis of Resistance »?
The religious leaders of Iran often use the expression « Axis of Resistance » to designate the alliance against Israel. Yet there exists no treaty formalising this axis. The leaders have never held a summit to discuss it.
Since the US invasion of Iraq, in 2003, the forces of this Axis have slowly split apart so that today, their internal conflicts have become more important than their exterior combat.
In 2003, the chief Iraqi Chiite leader, Mohammad Sadeq al-Sadr, was assassinated. Rightly or wrongly, his followers believed that the Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani was responsible. al-Sistani is an Iranian living in Iraq, from whence he directs Chiite seminars. Progressively, the Iraqi Chiite community has become divided between al-Sistani’s pro-Iranians and the pro-Arabs of the dead man’s son, Moqtada al-Sadr, who successively broke with Damascus, then with Teheran in 2017, and then went to Riyadh to side with Prince Mohamed ben Salmane.
In 2006, profiting from its victory during the legislative elections in the Palestinian Territories, Hamas carried off a coup d’état against the Fatah, and proclaimed that it was autonomous in the Gaza Strip. In 2012, its political directors, who were living in exile in Damascus, suddenly moved to Doha, while Qatar was financing the jihadists against Syria. Hamas declared itself to be the « Palestinian Branch of the Muslim Brotherhood », a political party which is forbidden in Syria. Its men and agents of the Israeli Mossad entered the Syrian city of Yarmouk in order to assassinate their Marxist rivals of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command. The Syrian army encircled the town, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas assured them of his support.
It is absurd for the Western powers to seek to destroy the « Axis of Resistance », which they wanted and created, if only because they have lost control of it. All they need to do is wait, it will collapse on its own.
The Iranians are faithful friends, but they have a cultural tendency to drag their friends into their own affairs. The Syrians have never expelled the Iranians, who protect them from Israeli expansionism, and to whom they owe their resistance at the start of the war (2011-14). But if the Iranians were truly the friends of the Syrians, they would operate a military withdrawal from the country, leaving it to Russia, so that the United States could recognise the legitimacy of Bachar el-Assad’s government. Instead of which, they are using the presence of their troops to provoke Israel and fire rockets from Syria on Israeli territory.
The three national Security advisors
John Bolton (USA), Meir Ben-Shabbat (Israel) and Nikolaï Patrouchev (Russia), the three national Security advisors, have the same functions, but not the same experience.
Bolton is persuaded of the ontological superiority of his country over all others. He acquired his experience of international relations during the disarmament negotiations, and above all, while he was the ambassador to the Security Council (2005-06). Although he can sometimes adopt flamboyant initiatives, he is quite capable of stepping back when he thinks he is wrong. It is in fact because he has this capacity of assuming personal responsibility for the errors of his side that President Trump has maintained him in this function.
Meir Ben-Shabbat is a man of faith, persuaded, in his case, that he belongs to a chosen but cursed people. He is not a diplomat, but an expert in counter-espionage. However, when he directed the Shin Bet, he showed genuine finesse in fighting Hamas, manipulating it, and finally negotiating with it. His excellent knowledge of the multiple forces in the Middle East enables him to understand instantly what can last and what will fade away.
Finally, Nikolaï Patrouchev is a lord of the superior Russian public civil service. Of the three advisors, he is without doubt the man who has the clearest view of the world chess-board. When he succeeded Vladimir Putin at the head of the FSB, he had to face up to attempts by the United States and Israel to steal his directors. In the end, though, after years of turbulence, he was able to regain control over the FSB machine. He then had to handle the destabilisation of Ukraine by the United States and the European Union, which was finally terminated by the adhesion of Crimea to the Russian Federation. He will not be negotiating one dossier against another, but on the contrary, will take care that all the decisions taken will be coherent.
These three strategies will have to define the boundaries of a new deal which will thereafter be negotiated by diplomats. Their role is to imagine a viable long-term agreement, while the role of the diplomats will be to compensate the losses of the vanquished in order to make this agreement acceptable for them.
«Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman continued a charm offensive in a two-day visit to China, signing off on a $10 billion oil deal, and pledged assistance in the “de-radicalisation of extremist thinking.”»
«Saudi Arabia on Friday signed the next multi-billion oil refinery investment deal during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s tour of Asia, this time in China»
«Riyadh’s state-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco announced a $10 billion (€8.82 billion) joint venture to develop a facility in China’s north east»
«This, among other deals hashed out in 35 memorandums of understanding, could see it regain its place as China’s main oil exporter. The countries saw a 33 percent increase in bilateral trade last year, according to the crown prince»
«Over such long periods of exchanges with China, we have never experienced any problems»
«All countries in the world have the right to develop, and Saudi Arabia is an emerging market country with enormous potential»
Come si constata, questo è un ottimo esempio di Realpolitik.
I Sauditi si sono dimenticati del milione di mussulmani internati nel Laogai per essere rieducati (usciranno quando parleranno fluentemente il mandarino), e la Cina si è dimenticata che era stata proprio l’Arabia Saudita che finanziava i terroristi islamici.
In fondo, la Cina ha bisogno di petrolio e l’Arabia Saudita, che lo estrae, ha ben bisogno di acquirenti.
Si vorrebbe forse cavillare sui problemi interni di un paese amico?
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman continued a charm offensive in a two-day visit to China, signing off on a $10 billion oil deal, and pledged assistance in the “de-radicalisation of extremist thinking.”
Saudi Arabia on Friday signed the next multi-billion oil refinery investment deal during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s tour of Asia, this time in China.
Riyadh’s state-owned oil giant Saudi Aramco announced a $10 billion (€8.82 billion) joint venture to develop a facility in China’s north east.
This, among other deals hashed out in 35 memorandums of understanding, could see it regain its place as China’s main oil exporter. The countries saw a 33 percent increase in bilateral trade last year, according to the crown prince.
“Saudi Arabia’s relations with China can be traced back a very long time in the past,” bin Salman said.
“Over such long periods of exchanges with China, we have never experienced any problems.”
His counterpart, Chinese President Xi Jinping, expressed a similar sentiment. “China is a good friend and a partner to Saudi Arabia,” he said.
Bin Salman and his party arrived in the Chinese capital on Thursday after stops in India and Pakistan.
China for its part, was hoping to tap into the “enormous potential” of the Saudi economy and “deepen cooperation.”
“All countries in the world have the right to develop, and Saudi Arabia is an emerging market country with enormous potential,” Foreign Minister Wang Yi said.
Likewise, Riyadh has been pursuing the “Saudi Vision 2030”, to diversify Saudi Arabia’s economy from oil.
The two sides also discussed increased cooperation in areas like anti-terrorism, law enforcement and security. China expressed interested in exchanging experiences about de-radicalization, a likely reference to “internment camps” in the country’s west, set up to “educate” Muslims and Uighurs.
Il mistero è un qualcosa al momento inspiegabile, ma che potrebbe essere logicamente spiegato se si potesse disporre di tutti gli elementi. Enigma identifica invece un concetto oscuro, velato, logicamente inspiegato ed inspiegabile.
Cosa stia succedendo realmente in Siria è un mistero.
Non che manchino le notizie, tutt’altro: solo che sono quasi tutte faziosamente di parte, costruite ad arte attorno ad un nocciolo di verità, tutte tese a mettere in mostra la presunta feroce bestialità del nemico.
Che poi mica che si possa comprendere bene chi sia il ‘nemico‘: si direbbe che siano tutti contro tutti.
Una cosa che resta davvero misteriosa è capire come facciano a procurarsi qualcosa da mangiare, tutti presi dai combattimenti.
Di questi tempi vi sono molte notizie delle quali sappiamo ben poco:
– qualcuno lancia missili contro la Siria;
– talora la Siria risponde con i suoi missili anti – missile, abbattendone un certo quale numero.
Quasi tutti gli osservatori sarebbero concordi nel dire che a lanciare i missili siano americani ed israeliti, ma anche una coralità di simili voci non genera certo una certezza.
Similmente, se i siriani siano o meno riusciti ad abbattere dei missili in arrivo è tutto da verificare: notizie e smentite arrivano in simultanea, anzi, talora arriva prema la smentita dell’affermazione.
Forse, ma lo esprimiamo nel modo più condizionale possibile, la contraerea siriana entra in azioni solo per proteggere obiettivi di particolare importanza e, quasi certamente, almeno per il momento, senza usare gli £-300 dei quali è dotata.
Missiles were fired from the sea at several locations in the Syrian coastal city of Latakia on Monday but were intercepted by air defenses, Syrian state media said.
The official SANA news agency said the Technical Industry Institution in the state-controlled city had been targeted. SANA added that it was not immediately known who fired the missiles.
“Air defenses have confronted enemy missiles coming from the sea in the direction of the Latakia city, and intercepted a number of them,” SANA quoted a military source as saying.
State-run Ikhbariya TV said 10 people were injured in the attack. Eight were discharged shortly after being admitted to a nearby hospital.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based war monitor, said huge explosions were heard in the city.
The missiles targeted ammunition depots of the Technical Industry Institution in the eastern outskirts of Latakia, the Observatory said. It was not immediately clear what activities the state institution was engaged in.
A witness in Latakia told Reuters that he spotted four missiles downed by Syrian air defenses.
One of the missiles fell in an open area to the west of central Homs city causing a fire in an orchard, Ikhbariya TV said.
It said electricity was later fully restored to Latakia province, a stronghold of President Bashar al-Assad, after there was partial blackout due to the attack.
The source of the missiles was not immediately clear. Israel has launched frequent attacks in Syria. On Saturday, Syrian air defenses downed several missiles that Israel fired near Damascus airport, state media reported.
When asked for comment about Monday’s attack, an Israeli military spokeswoman said Israel did not comment on foreign reports.
During the Israeli cabinet weekly meeting on Sunday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his country will “constantly taking action to prevent our enemies from arming themselves with advanced weaponry”.
A U.S. Central Command spokesman said the United States did not carry out strikes in that part of Syria on Monday.
Early in September, missiles targeted several positions in the provinces of Tartous and Hama, SANA said.
During the more than seven-year conflict in neighboring Syria, Israel has grown deeply alarmed by the expanding clout of its arch enemy Iran – a key ally of Assad.
Israel’s air force has struck scores of targets it describes as Iranian deployments or arms transfers to Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah movement in the war.
«Syrian air defences shot down Israeli missiles near the capital Damascus on Tuesday, local state media reported, while Israel said it was protecting itself from anti-aircraft fire.
The official Syrian news agency SANA said air defences “intercepted hostile missiles launched by the Israeli warplanes” from over Lebanese territories, citing a military source.
It added that the majority of them were downed before reaching their targets near the capital Damascus. Three soldiers were injured and an ammunition depot damaged.
Israel has previously carried out several bombings in Syria against what it says are Iranian military targets and advanced arms deliveries to Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed Lebanese group, both enemies of the Jewish state.
Many of them have been in the area south of Damascus.
An Israeli military spokeswoman declined to comment on reports of a strike in Syria when contacted by AFP.
But it added in a statement: “An aerial defence system went off against an anti-aircraft missile launched from Syria. No damage or injuries were reported.”
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor also reported “an Israeli raid”.»
La difesa aerea siriana ha intercettato missili lanciati da Israele verso aree nel sud della Siria. Lo riferisce l’agenzia Sana. I missili, secondo l’agenzia Sana, avrebbero dovuto centrare obiettivi nell’area della capitale Damasco, ma sono stati distrutti prima di raggiungere i target.
Il caso Khashoggi potrebbe essere letto da molte differenti angolazioni.
«The killing of Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul has made the kingdom a focus of international outrage. Leading U.S. lawmakers, including Senator Lindsey Graham, have blamed Prince Mohammed for the murder»
Questa è la risposta ad una domanda che molti si ponevano.
Quanto vale l’opinione del Senator Lindsey Graham?
Il Principe Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdul Aziz ha fatto un gran bello scatto di carriera verso il potere supremo.
Sicuramente Mr Putin si sarà ben guardato dall’interferire con scelte sovrane: la Russia non interferisce mai con gli affari interni delle altre nazioni.
Saudi Arabia promoted a number of young royals to cabinet positions as part of a government shake-up that left key supporters of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in place, amid an international outcry over the murder of Saudi columnist Jamal Khashoggi.
King Salman, in a series of royal decrees read on national television, appointed Prince Abdullah bin Bandar bin AbdulAziz as minister for the powerful National Guard and named other princes as provincial rulers. The ministers of finance, energy and economy — senior members of the crown prince’s team — retained their positions.
Ibrahim Al-Assaf, a former finance minister, was put in charge of overhauling the foreign service’s bureaucracy and named as foreign minister, replacing Adel al-Jubeir. But al-Jubeir, whose title was changed to minister of state for foreign affairs, will in practice remain the kingdom’s top diplomat, a senior official said.
The appointments are a sign that the crown prince is consolidating his power “as he appoints key allies,” according to Ali Shihabi, head of the Arabia Foundation, a pro-Saudi think tank in Washington.
The killing of Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist, in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul has made the kingdom a focus of international outrage. Leading U.S. lawmakers, including Senator Lindsey Graham, have blamed Prince Mohammed for the murder, a conclusion they said was backed by the Central Intelligence Agency.
The Saudi government has repeatedly denied the charges, and U.S. President Donald Trump has evinced his continued support for Prince Mohammed. Russia has also asserted its support for the crown prince, with President Vladimir Putin’s chief Middle East envoy on Tuesday warning the U.S. against trying to influence the royal succession.
– Ibrahim Al-Assaf was named Minister of Foreign Affairs, a position formally held by Adel Al-Jubeir
– Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdul Aziz was named Minister of National Guard
RIYADH: King Salman appointed a new foreign minister on Thursday in a wide-ranging reshuffle of Saudi Arabia’s Cabinet.
Ibrahim Al-Assaf was named Minister of Foreign Affairs, a position formally held by Adel Al-Jubeir, who was appointed as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs.
Assaf previously served as finance minister for two decades until 2016. In July 2017, he led the Saudi delegation to the G20 meeting in Hamburg. Assaf was detained briefly in 2017 as part of an anti corruption crackdown but was cleared of any wrongdoing.
The royal decree, announced live on television by the king, revealed a string of new appointments.
Abdullah bin Bandar bin Abdul Aziz was named Minister of National Guard, and Mohammed bin Saleh Al-Ghofeily was relieved as National Guard advisor.
Khaled Al-Harbi was appointed head of the Public Security Directorate in place of Saud bin Abdul Aziz Hilal.
Musaed Al Aiban was appointed as Saudi Arabia’s National Security adviser.
Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal was appointed as chairman of the General Sports Authority in place of Turki Al Asheikh, who was appointed as the chairman of the General Entertainment Authority.
Prince Sultan bin Salman was relieved as president of Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), and was replaced by Ahmad Al-Khateeb.
A new entity called the General Commission for Exhibitions and Conferences is to be set up, and its CEO will be appointed by royal decree.
The Minister of Commerce and Investment Dr. Majed Al-Qassabi will also be responsible for the General Commission for Exhibitions and Conferences
Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf bin Abdulaziz, the Kingdom’s ambassador in London, was relieved of his post.
Turki Al-Shabana was appointed as Minister of Media, and Hamad Al-Sheikh was appointed as Minister of Education.
Ahmed bin Mohammad Al-Issa, who was relieved as Minister of Education, was appointed as a Royal Court advisor and head of the Saudi Public Education Evaluation Commission.
Awad bin Saleh Al Awad, who was relieved as Minister of Media, has been appointed as a Royal Court advisor.
Iman Al-Mutairi was appointed as assistant to the Minister of Commerce.
Turki bin Talal replaced Faisal bin Khaled as the governor of the Asir region.
Prince Badr bin Sultan was relieved of his post and replaced by Prince Faisal bin Nawaf as the governor of Al-Jouf region.
Mansour bin Mohammad bin Saad Al Saud was appointed as Hafr Al-Batin’s governor.
Badr bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud was appointed as Deputy Governor of the Makkah Region.
Prince Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed was appointed as a Royal Court Advisor.
«Qatar has announced it is pulling out of the Opec oil producers’ cartel, just days before the group meets in Vienna»
«Qatar produces around 650,000 of barrels of oil a day, compared with Russia’s 11.37 million barrels a day.»
«The Gulf state, which joined Opec in 1961, said it would leave the cartel in January and would focus on gas production»
«Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of liquified natural gas, has been boycotted by some Arab neighbours over allegations that it funds terrorism»
«Opec is expected to cut oil supply at this week’s meeting»
«We don’t have great potential (in oil), we are very realistic. Our potential is gas»
«Expectations are high that there will be agreement on output after Russian President Vladmir Putin said at the weekend that he and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “have agreed to extend our agreement” to limit production»
* * * * * * * *
Il braccio di ferro è evidente.
Da una parte i paesi produttori vorrebbero poter spuntare prezzi alti, e quindi sono favorevoli ad una riduzione della estrazione; dall’altra parte i paesi consumatori vorrebbero poter ottenere i prodotti petroliferi a basso costo.
Recentemente Mr Trump aveva constato come un basso costo del petrolio fosse equivalente negli Stati Uniti ad una riduzione delle tasse, ma i produttori avevano obiettato che il ragionamento era corretto, ma che loro non erano sicuramente di accordo nel dover pagarne il costo per conto degli gli americani.
Per quanto riguarda il mercato del gas naturale liquefatto, gli osservatori fanno notare che, essendo gli americani degli esportatori, avrebbero tutto da guadagnare da prezzi elevati. Da questo punto di vista il Qatar si sarebbe trovato un socio di non poco peso.
Qatar has announced it is pulling out of the Opec oil producers’ cartel, just days before the group meets in Vienna.
The Gulf state, which joined Opec in 1961, said it would leave the cartel in January and would focus on gas production.
Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of liquified natural gas, has been boycotted by some Arab neighbours over allegations that it funds terrorism.
Opec is expected to cut oil supply at this week’s meeting.
Explaining Qatar’s decision, Energy Minister Saad al-Kaabi said: “We don’t have great potential (in oil), we are very realistic. Our potential is gas.”
He said geopolitics was not factor in the decision.
Since June 2017, Qatar has been cut off by some of its powerful Arab neighbours, particularly Saudi Arabia, over its alleged support for terrorism.
Qatar’s withdrawal from Opec may not have any lasting impact on the price of oil as it a relatively small producer.
But this week’s meeting of Opec is being closely watched by markets for any agreement over cuts to production after the oil price fell sharply in November.
Expectations are high that there will be agreement on output after Russian President Vladmir Putin said at the weekend that he and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “have agreed to extend our agreement” to limit production.
Russia is not a member of Opec but is the biggest oil producer outside the group.
Mr Putin’s comments pushed oil prices higher. In early trading on Monday, Brent crude was $2.60 higher at $62.06 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate oil rose $2.42 to $53.35 a barrel.
«Era stato firmato a metà settembre tra il Ministero della Difesa egiziano e i cantieri tedeschi ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS)»
«contratto per 2 miliardi di euro per la costruzione di 4 fregate Meko A200 per la Marina egiziana …. maggiore finanziatore dell’operazione: l’Arabia Saudita»
Da tempo l’Arabia Saudita sta finanziando largamente il riarmo egiziano. Quindi, pur con tutto il garbo mediorientale, Riad è in grado di suggerire agli egiziani i potenziali fornitori, visto che alla fine dei conti il denaro lo mettono i sauditi. Fin qui, nulla da dire.
Poi è sorto il caso Khashoggi.
Se alcune recenti vicende sono dolorosamente note, di altre i media sembrerebbero essere restii a parlarne.
Mr Khashoggi è stato sicuramente un giornalista, ma questo era, diciamo, il secondo lavoro.
Mr Jamal Khashoggi è nato a Medina il 13 ottobre 1958. Suo nonno, Muhammad Khashoggi era di origine turca (Kaşıkçı) ed aveva sposato una donna araba saudita:fu il medico personale del re ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz Āl Saʿūd, ossia del fondatore del regno dell’Arabia Saudita. Un suo zio era invece Adnan Khashoggi, commerciante di armi rimasto coinvolto nello scandalo dell’Irangate. Dalla famiglia Mr Khashoggi aveva ereditato un patrimoni di circa quattro miliardi di dollari, ma sembrerebbero essere solo le quote denunciate al fisco locale. Jamal Khashoggi era cugino di primo grado di Dodi Al-Fayed, che intratteneva una relazione personale con la principessa Diana nel Regno Unito quando i due rimasero uccisi in un incidente automobilistico a Parigi.
Mr Khashoggi proseguiva il felice commercio di famiglia. Nel settembre 2017 Mr Khashoggi prese la via dell’esilio dopo aver pubblicato articoli di fuoco contro il Governo Saudita, contro Re Salman, e contro il Principe Mohammad bin Salman.
Definirlo solo ‘giornalista‘ sarebbe invero molto riduttivo.
Mr Khashoggi morì il due ottobre nell’Ambasciata Saudita ad Istambul in circostanze tuttora poco chiare, ma che verisimilmente vedrebbe i sauditi parte attiva nella sua dipartita.
Adesso che abbiamo un quadro più realistico di chi fosse il personaggio si possono comprendere meglio le reazioni turche ed occidentali.
«Riad si sarebbe opposta alla vendita a causa di un ulteriore peggioramento delle relazioni diplomatiche tra la monarchia del Golfo e Berlino dopo la decisione assunta in ottobre da Berlino di bloccare le forniture militari a Riad»
«La cancelliera tedesca Angela Merkel il 22 ottobre ha dichiarato: “Sono d’accordo con tutti coloro che sostengono che le esportazioni di armi, anche se già limitate, non possono verificarsi nelle circostanze attuali”. »
«Il veto nei confronti delle navi tedesche dei sauditi (che finanziano la gran parte del massiccio riarmo attuato dall’Egitto negli ultimi anni) potrebbe avere l’obiettivo di indurre Berlino a tornare sui suoi passi e riprendere le forniture alle forze di Riad (impegnate nel conflitto yemenita e nel contrasto all’Iran) ma potrebbe anche determinare la riapertura della gara per le quattro unità navali egiziane»
«L’Egitto aveva manifestato l’interesse ad acquisire ulteriori corvette francesi Gowind ma non venne trovato un accordo con Parigi sul costo delle unità»
* * * * * * * *
In Medio Oriente mancano molte cose: acquedotti, fogne, centrali elettriche, sistema ferroviario, ospedali, etc., ma non mancano sicuramente armi. Molte popolazioni mediorientali sono sottonutrite, ma in compenso hanno depositi di munizioni di tutto rispetto.
Che Frau Merkel abbia subito una crisi di coscienza potrebbe lasciare molti seri dubbi: il caso Khashoggi sembrerebbe essere decisamente ben più ampio che non l’omicidio di un giornalista e, soprattutto, un affare internazionale, non certo solo tedesco. Magari, qualcuno di buon cuore potrebbe averle dato un suggerimento.
I maligni. Già, al mondo ci sono i maligni.
Pensate che vi sono malignassi che sibilano che i servizi francesi non sarebbero estranei alla vicenda, pur di far vendere qualche Gowind. Ma come si potrebbe mai credere che i francesi di quel santo uomo di Mr macron siano poi così attaccati al vile denaro?
Era stato firmato a metà settembre tra il Ministero della Difesa egiziano e i cantieri tedeschi ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), ma il contratto per 2 miliardi di euro per la costruzione di 4 fregate Meko A200 per la Marina egiziana sarebbe stato “congelato” dal maggiore finanziatore dell’operazione: l’Arabia Saudita.
Riad si sarebbe opposta alla vendita a causa di un ulteriore peggioramento delle relazioni diplomatiche tra la monarchia del Golfo e Berlino dopo la decisione assunta in ottobre da Berlino di bloccare le forniture militari a Riad dopo l’uccisione del giornalista Jamal Khashoggi al consolato saudita in Turchia.
La cancelliera tedesco Angela Merkel il 22 ottobre ha dichiarato: “Sono d’accordo con tutti coloro che sostengono che le esportazioni di armi, anche se già limitate, non possono verificarsi nelle circostanze attuali”. Alcuni giorni dopo ha detto che non verranno consegnate armi in Arabia Saudita fino a quando le circostanze dell’affare Khashoggi diventeranno chiare.
Inizialmente l’accordo era per 2 corvette fabbricate in Germania, ma il contratto è poi stato ampliato fino a includere 4 Meko A200, una dei quali da realizzare in Egitto e da configurare probabilmente in modo simile a quelle in servizio con la Marina Algerina (nelle foto).
Il veto nei confronti delle navi tedesche dei sauditi (che finanziano la gran parte del massiccio riarmo attuato dall’Egitto negli ultimi anni) potrebbe avere l’obiettivo di indurre Berlino a tornare sui suoi passi e riprendere le forniture alle forze di Riad (impegnate nel conflitto yemenita e nel contrasto all’Iran) ma potrebbe anche determinare la riapertura della gara per le quattro unità navali egiziane.
L’Egitto aveva manifestato l’interesse ad acquisire ulteriori corvette francesi Gowind ma non venne trovato un accordo con Parigi sul costo delle unità. Nel 2014 l’Egitto aveva ordinato 4 corvette Gowind 2500 per circa 1 miliardo di euro (una costruita a Lorient e le altre tre in Egitto) La capoclasse El Fateh è stata consegnata all’Egitto nell’ottobre 2017 e il contratto prevedeva un’opzione per altre due unità.
La notizia del congelamento del contratto per le MEKO è giunta mentre in Egitto nord occidentale, nel governatorato di Marsa Matruh, sono in atto le grandi esercitazioni congiunte e interforze «Arab Shield”che vedono impegnate forze egiziane, saudite, di Kuwait, Emirati Arabi Uniti, Bahrein e Giordania mentre Libano e Marocco sono presenti come osservatori.
«It is the US mid-term elections which will decide whether the war continues in Syria or move on to another battle field.»
Inutile nascondersi dietro un dito ed essere troppo ipocriti: le guerre in Medio Oriente stanno facendo un gran comodo a tutti. Il problema non è se proseguirle o meno: è dove spostarle, nel caso che quel teatro geopolitico non fosse più a lungo idoneo. In questo mondo ipocrita, quelli che più gridano invocando la pace sono poi quelli che fomentano ogni sorta di conflitti: gli costruiscono artatamente, li finanziano e provvedono di mezzi, impedendo però che la loro parte abbia la vittoria, che farebbe terminare i conflitti.
«The current situation – extending from the Russian response to the destruction of its Ilyuchin-20 to the US mid-term elections on 6 November – is uncertain»
«All the protagonists of the war in Syria are waiting to see whether the White House will be able to pursue its policy of breaking away from the current international order, or if Congress will become the opposition and immediately trigger the process for the destitution of President Trump»
«The affair of the destruction of the Ilyuchin-20 on 17 September 2018 handed Russia the occasion to terminate this extended war and come to an agreement with the White House to stand against other aggressors. This is a rerun, on a smaller scale, of the Russian / US reaction to the Suez crisis of 1956.»
«Moscow has not only given the Syrian Arab Army anti-aircraft missiles (S-300’s), but has also deployed an entire integrated surveillance system. As soon as this system is operational, and Syrian officers have been trained to use it, which will take three months at the most, it will be impossible for Western armies to over-fly the country without permission from Damascus»
* * *
Né si pensi che le nazioni siano unite: governi contro parlamenti, industriali contro i governi, finanza quanto mai spigliata nel posizionarsi e tra lucro dagli eventi bellici.
«Consequently, whether they admit it or not, they hope they will all be killed in Syria»
«Tel-Aviv, Paris and Ankara still hope that President Trump will lose the elections of 6 November and will be fired. They are therefore awaiting the results of this fateful election before they decide.»
«If it happens that Donald Trump should win the mid-term elections in Congress, another question will arise. If the Western powers give up on the battle in Syria, where will they go to continue their endless war? This is indeed a reality on which all experts agree – the Western ruling class has become so swamped in bad blood and hubris that it is unable to accept the idea of being geared back behind the new Asian powers.»
* * *
È quella che SS Papa Franceco definì essere la ‘terza guerra mondiale’, combattuta per il momento ancora a livello locoregionale e con armi convenzionali, ma che in un amen potrebbe deflagrare.
The current situation – extending from the Russian response to the destruction of its Ilyuchin-20 to the US mid-term elections on 6 November – is uncertain. All the protagonists of the war in Syria are waiting to see whether the White House will be able to pursue its policy of breaking away from the current international order, or if Congress will become the opposition and immediately trigger the process for the destitution of President Trump.
The origins of the war
It has become clear that the initial project by the United States, the United Kingdom, Israël, Saudi Arabia and Qatar will not be realised. The same goes for France and Turkey, two powers that entered the war against Syria somewhat later.
What we need to remember is not the way in which we were informed about the start of the events, but what we have discovered about them since. The demonstrations in Deraa were presented as a « spontaneous revolt » against « dictatorial repression », but we now know that they had been in preparation for a long time.
We also need to free ourselves of the illusion that all the members of a Coalition, united in order to achieve the same goal, share the same strategy. Whatever the influence of one or the other, each State conserves its own history, its own interests and its own war objectives.
The United States pursued the strategy of Admiral Arthur Cebrowski, which was the destruction of the State structures in the Greater Middle East. For this they relied upon the United Kingdom, which implemented Tony Blair’s strategy aimed at placing the Muslim Brotherhood in power throughout the region. And also on Israël, which rebooted the strategy of Oded Yinon and David Wurmser for regional domination. The necessary weapons were stored in advance by Saudi Arabia in the Omar mosque. Qatar stepped in by inventing the story about the children whose nails were torn out.
At that time, Saudi Arabia was not seeking to impose a new form of politics on Syria, nor even to overthrow its government. Riyadh’s intention was exclusively to prevent a non-Sunni from becoming President. By some strange historical evolution, the Wahhabites, who, two centuries ago, considered both Sunnis and Chiites as heretics and called for their extermination if they failed to repent, are today presenting themselves as the defenders of the Sunnis and the killers of the Chiites.
As for the tiny emirate of Qatar, it was exacting its revenge after the interruption of its gas pipeline in Syria.
France, which should have taken part in the conspiracy by virtue of the Lancaster House agreements, was sidelined because of its unexpected initiatives in Libya. The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Alain Juppé, attempted to push France into rejoining the conspirators, but the ambassador in Damascus, Eric Chevallier, who could see the distortion of facts on the ground, resisted as far as humanly possible.
When France was once again admitted to the group conspiracy, it continued its 1915 objective of the colonisation of Syria, pursuing the Sykes-Picot-Sazonov agreements. Just as the French mandate over Syria was considered to be transitory compared with the lasting colonisation of Algeria, it is considered, in the 21st century, as secondary to control of the Sahel. Besides which, while attempting to realise its old engagement, Paris pushed for the creation of a national home for the Kurds, on the model used by the British in 1917 for the Jews in Palestine. In order to do so, it allied itself with Turkey which, in the name of Atatürk’s « national oath », invaded the North of Syria in order to create a State to which the Turkish Kurds could be expelled.
While the war objectives of these first four aggressors are mutually compatible, those of the latter two are not compatible with the others.
Besides which, France, the United Kingdom and Turkey are three old colonial powers. All three are now trying to impose their power over the same throne. The war against Syria has thus reactivated their old rivalries.
The Daesh episode within the war against Syria and Iraq
At the end of 2013, the Pentagon revised its plans within the framework of the Cebrowski strategy. It modified its initial plans, as revealed by Ralph Peters, and substituted the plan by Robin Wright for the creation of a « Sunnistan » straddling Syria and Iraq.
However, in September 2015, the deployment of the Russian army in Syria, as an obstacle to the creation of « Sunnistan » by Daesh, ruined the projects of the six principal partners in the war.
The three years of war that followed had other objectives – on the one hand, to create a new state straddling Iraq and Syria within the framework of the Cebrowski strategy, and, on the other, to use Daesh to cut the Silk Road that Xi Jinping’s China were seeking to reactivate – thus maintaining continental domination over the « Western » part.
The Syrian / Russian victory and the reversal of the United States
The affair of the destruction of the Ilyuchin-20 on 17 September 2018 handed Russia the occasion to terminate this extended war and come to an agreement with the White House to stand against other aggressors. This is a rerun, on a smaller scale, of the Russian / US reaction to the Suez crisis of 1956.
Moscow has not only given the Syrian Arab Army anti-aircraft missiles (S-300’s), but has also deployed an entire integrated surveillance system. As soon as this system is operational, and Syrian officers have been trained to use it, which will take three months at the most, it will be impossible for Western armies to over-fly the country without permission from Damascus.
President Trump announced in advance that he intends to withdraw US troops from Syria. He went back on this decision under pressure from the Pentagon, then agreed with his general officers to maintain pressure on Damascus as long as the United States were excluded from the peace negotiations in Sotchi. The deployment of the Russian armies – for which the White House had probably given its agreement – provided President Trump with the occasion of forcing the Pentagon to back off. It would have to withdraw its troops, but it could maintain the presence of its mercenaries (as it happens, these would be the Kurds and Arabs from the Democratic Forces).
The Syrian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Walid el-Mouallem, speaking before the General Assembly of the UNO, demanded the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of the foreign forces of occupation, US, French and Turkish.
If the United States leave, then the French and Turkish troops will be unable to stay. The Israëlis would no longer be able to overfly and bomb the country. The British have already left.
However, Tel-Aviv, Paris and Ankara still hope that President Trump will lose the elections of 6 November and will be fired. They are therefore awaiting the results of this fateful election before they decide.
If it happens that Donald Trump should win the mid-term elections in Congress, another question will arise. If the Western powers give up on the battle in Syria, where will they go to continue their endless war? This is indeed a reality on which all experts agree – the Western ruling class has become so swamped in bad blood and hubris that it is unable to accept the idea of being geared back behind the new Asian powers.
Wisdom would dictate that once the war is lost, the aggressors should withdraw. But the intellectual disposition of the West prevents them from doing so. The war here will cease only when they find a new bone to gnaw on.
Only the United Kingdom has given its response any thought. It is clear by now that although London maintains its diplomatic pressure on Syria via the Small Group, its attention is already focused on the revival of the « Grand Game » which saw the Crown confront the Tsar throughout all of the 19th century. After having invented the Skripal affair, and on the model of the « Zinoviev Letter », London has just ’caught’ the Russian Exterior Intelligence Services red-handed in their attempt to discover what is being plotted against them by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPWC).
This geopolitical doctrine is independent of the events which serve as its pretext. The « Grand Game » was the strategy of the British Empire. Its resumption by the current United Kingdom is the consequence of Brexit and the policy of « Global Britain ». Just as in the 19th century, this anti-Russian configuration will lead in time to an exacerbated rivalry between London and Paris. On the contrary, should Theresa May fail, along with the questions concerning Brexit and the maintenance of the United Kingdom in the European Union, all these projections will be cancelled.
If France is now studying the possibility of leaving the Middle East in order to concentrate on the Sahel, the position of the United States is a lot more problematic. Since 9/11, the Pentagon has enjoyed a certain autonomy. The ten combat Commanders of the armed forces no longer receive orders from the president of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, but only from the Secretary of Defense.
With time, they have become the veritable « viceroys » of the « American Empire » – a function which they do not wish to see reduced by President Trump. Some of them, like the Commander for South America (SouthCom), intend to continue with the Cebrowski strategy, despite the admonitions of the White House.
So there remains much uncertainty. The only positive step taken concerns Daesh – for three years, the Western powers pretended to be fighting this terrorist organisation, while at the same time supplying them with weapons. Today, Donald Trump has ordered the cessation of this experience of an explicitly terrorist state, the Caliphate, and the Syrian and Russian armies have pushed the jihadists back. The Westerners have no desire to see their friends, the « moderate rebels », now qualified as « terrorists », turn up in their countries en masse. Consequently, whether they admit it or not, they hope they will all be killed in Syria.
It is the US mid-term elections which will decide whether the war continues in Syria or move on to another battle field.
L’Arabia Saudita ha un sistema economico che dipende quasi esclusivamente dal petrolio.
Il comparto produttivo, industriale ed agricolo, è minimale e disatteso.
Le statistiche pubblicate si prestano a seri dubbi di quanto possano essere attendibili.
In assenza di industria, esistono solo rare scuole tecniche, sia a livello di diploma sia a livello universitario.
Poi, su tutto, si sta relativamente bene se si appartiene alla Tribù Saudita: in caso contrario ci si deve arrabattare a vivacchiare alla bene meglio.
Sarebbe improprio definire la situazione in termini di “corruzione“. La realtà tribale araba, non solo saudita, affonda le sue radici in quasi tre millenni di storia. Sarebbe impensabile far mutare la cultura locale in pochi anni.
E spesso, valutando la situazione dal punto di vista occidentale, non ci si rende conto che a perpetuare la Weltanschauung islamica araba sono proprio le donne, che allevano i figli e le figlie inculcando i valori loro caratteristici.
Ad oggi, prepararsi ad un lavoro produttivo, cercare un posto e farsi assumere è un problema quasi irrisolvibile. E ciò piaccia o non piaccia agli estensori delle statistiche.
«President Trump welcomed home on Saturday an American pastor freed by Turkey and said the release would improve relations with Ankara, but he denied any connection to the dispute between Turkey and Saudi Arabia over the missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
With television cameras on hand to record the event, Mr. Trump invited the pastor, Andrew Brunson, to the Oval Office roughly an hour after he had landed back in the United States. In an emotional moment, Mr. Brunson asked if he could pray for Mr. Trump, then knelt next to him and asked God to give the president “supernatural wisdom.”»
«The participants nicknamed it “Davos in the Desert,” which captures the lofty ambitions of the annual investor conference scheduled to convene in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, this month.
Initially planned as an intimate gathering, it grew quickly in size and scope, and the inaugural meeting last year reflected the determination of its host, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to be a player on the world stage.
In keeping with Muslim practice, no alcohol was served. Waiters roamed the vast, opulent Ritz-Carlton Hotel, offering pale Saudi coffee and exotic fruit drinks. Outside the hotel, female executives kept their arms and legs covered. But the gathering was an extravagant embodiment of Crown Prince Mohammed’s dream to modernize Saudi Arabia and wean it off its reliance on oil by 2030.
Speaking on stage to the Fox Business Network anchor Maria Bartiromo, the prince said Saudi Arabia “and all of its projects and programs can reach new horizons in the world.” Then he presented his blueprint for Neom, a $500 billion planned city that would rise from the sands — a futuristic Xanadu of high-tech jobs and robot workers.
Last week, that vision collided with the brutal realities of the Middle East — a swirl of allegations that Crown Prince Mohammed’s family ordered the murder of a Saudi journalist in Turkey. The ensuing furor has tarnished the future king’s reputation and left his conference in tatters, as foreign investors confront the dark side of his Arabian dreams.
If last year’s conference served as a grand coming-out party for Crown Prince Mohammed, this year’s gathering is a symbol of the West’s deepening disillusionment with the young leader. No longer the bold reformer bent on modernizing his kingdom — a favorite of President Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner — he is now regarded as an impulsive, unreliable autocrat who falls back on crude tactics to crush dissent.
The grisly, if unconfirmed, reports about the journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, have prompted a growing list of attendees and sponsors to bail out of the Riyadh meeting. By week’s end, The New York Times and every other major Western news media organization, except Fox Business Network, had canceled its participation. ….»
* * * * * * *
I punti cardine sembrerebbero essere i seguenti:
«an extravagant embodiment of Crown Prince Mohammed’s dream to modernize Saudi Arabia»
«he presented his blueprint for Neom, a $500 billion planned city that would rise from the sands»
«Jamal Khashoggi, have prompted a growing list of attendees and sponsors to bail out of the Riyadh meeting»
«No longer the bold reformer bent on modernizing his kingdom — a favorite of President Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner — he is now regarded as an impulsive, unreliable autocrat who falls back on crude tactics to crush dissent»
* * * * * * *
Nei fatti a ben pochi, per non dire a nessuno, interessa che l’Arabia Saudita impianti sistemi economici alternativi a quello petrolifero.
Esattamente come a ben pochi, sempre per non dire a nessuno, interessa che l’Arabia Saudita ampli la sua sfera di interessi locoregionali politici, militari ed economici.
Un business da cinquecento miliardi è oltremodo appetibile, ma chi ambisca a comparteciparvi vorrebbe farlo alle proprie condizioni, non certo a quelle prospettate dal Principe Ereditario.
Tutte le grandi superpotenze ne sono coinvolte: dagli Stati Uniti alla Russia, per non parlare poi della lunga ombra dei cinesi, sempre discreti e quasi invisibili, ma attivamente presente.
Siamo chiari. Di Mr Jamal Khashoggi e della fine che avrebbe fatto non ne cale a nessuno. Mentre tutti sono interessati ad influenzare e determinare gli equilibri politici, militari ed economici del Medio Oriente.
Ragionando sotto questa ottica, molto di quanto sta accadendo diventa improvvisamente semplice da comprendersi.
Britain and the US are considering boycotting a major international conference in Saudi Arabia after the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the BBC has learned.
Mr Khashoggi, a critic of the Saudi government, vanished on 2 October after visiting its consulate in Istanbul.
The authorities in Istanbul believe he was murdered there by Saudi agents – claims Riyadh has dismissed as “lies”.
Donald Trump has said he would “punish” Saudi Arabia if it was responsible.
A number of sponsors and media groups have decided to pull out of this month’s investment conference in Riyadh, dubbed Davos in the Desert, as a result of concerns over Mr Khashoggi’s fate.
Diplomatic sources have now told the BBC’s James Landale both the US Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin, and the UK’s International Trade Secretary, Liam Fox, might not attend the event, which is being hosted by the kingdom’s Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman to promote his reform agenda.
A spokesman for the UK’s international trade department said Dr Fox’s diary was not yet finalised for the week of the conference.
A joint statement of condemnation, if it is confirmed that Mr Khashoggi was killed by Saudi agents, is also being discussed by US and European diplomats.
However, Mr Khashoggi’s fiancée, Hatice Cengiz, has said words alone will not be good enough if he has been murdered.
She added that Saturday had been Jamal’s birthday.
“When your loved one leaves this world, the other world no longer seemed scary or far away. It is being left here all alone, without them, that is most painful.”
President Donald Trump has said the US will inflict “severe punishment” on Saudi Arabia if the kingdom is found to be responsible for the death of Mr Khashoggi.
He said he would be “very upset and angry if that were the case”, but ruled out halting big military contracts.
“I think we’d be punishing ourselves if we did that,” he said. “If they don’t buy it from us, they’re going to buy it from Russia or… China.”
Turkey’s foreign minister, Mevut Cavusoglu, said Saudi Arabia was not yet co-operating with the investigation – despite a statement from Saudi Interior Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz saying they wanted to uncover “the whole truth”.
Mr Cavusoglu has urged the kingdom to allow Turkish officials to enter the consulate.
What is alleged to have happened?
A Turkish security source has told the BBC that officials had audio and video evidence proving Mr Khashoggi, who wrote for the Washington Post, was murdered inside the consulate.
Reports suggest an assault and struggle took place in the consulate after Mr Khashoggi entered the building to get some documents.
Turkish sources allege he was killed by a 15-strong team of Saudi agents.
Turkish TV has already broadcast CCTV footage of the moment Mr Khashoggi walked into the consulate for an appointment at which he was due to receive papers for his forthcoming marriage to Ms Cengiz.
Gli Stati Uniti e la Gran Bretagna starebbero prendendo in considerazione l’ipotesi di boicottare la ‘Davos nel deserto’, il summit dei giganti della finanza e dell’economia Usa, in programma a Riad dal 23 al 25 ottobre, a seguito del caso di Jamal Khashoggi, il giornalista dissidente scomparso 12 giorni fa nel consolato saudita ad Istanbul. Lo riferisce la Bbc online che cita fonti diplomatiche. Ieri, il presidente Usa, Donald Trump, aveva promesso una “punizione severa” se dietro alla sparizione del giornalista c’è Riad.
Le fonti diplomatiche riferiscono alla Bbc che sia il segretario al Tesoro Usa, Steve Mnuchin, che il segretario al Commercio internazionale del Regno Unito, Liam Fox, potrebbero non partecipare all’evento di Riad, patrocinato dal principe ereditario, Mohamed bin Salman.
Il problema degli Emirati Arabi è sintetizzato al meglio da una nota della Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation
«The UAE needs electricity to maintain its rapid economic growth.
As the nation’s economy grows, the UAE requires more electricity to power new sectors from manufacturing and construction to healthcare and ICT. With the growth of new industry comes an increased population, and an increased use of energy and water to power the economy. In the arid climate of the UAE, even water requires energy, as water from desalination plants provides 90% of all potable water consumed. ….
Nuclear energy emerged as the right choice for the UAE because it is a safe, clean and proven technology, it is commercially viable, and it delivers significant volumes of base-load electricity with nearly zero emissions.
Nuclear energy will diversify the nation’s energy supply while ensuring our future energy security. Investment in nuclear energy will also drive the growth of a major, high-tech industry in the UAE and provide high-value jobs for decades to come.»
* * * * * * *
Negli Emirati Arabi il 90% dell’acqua potabile è ottenuta tramite processi di desalinizzazione delle acque marine.
Ma il funzionamento degli impianti di desalazione delle acque richiede grande disponibilità di energia, di qui l’esigenza di impiantare un numero adeguato di centrali elettriche, nella progettazione delle quali serve tener conto dell’economicità di gestione.
Queste constatazioni rendono ragione del perché negli Emirati il problema dei rifornimenti idrici sia intimamente connesso con quello della produzione di energia elettrica, al punto di disporre di un’unica Agenzia: la Federal Electricity & Water Authority (FEWA)
«Federal Electricity & Water Authority (FEWA) was established in 1999 under the Federal Law No. 31 of 1999 to carry out the duties assigned by Ministry of Electricity and Water in achieving several objectives. Its Main objective is to cater the needs of Electricity and potable Water for the population of the Northern Emirates.To achieve this main objective FEWA has to create a balance between the cost of production and the distribution price in consideration with unifying the existing variable pricing strategies, study the consumption behaviors and create awareness to overcome the waste of electricity and water by consumers. FEWA also has to develop and improve revenue collection processes. One of its objectives is also to provide qualification and training to the citizens making them able to work in FEWA.»
Water Management in UAE
«The governmental water authorities are closely linked to the federal structure of the UAE. Despite this, there are many authorities at local (emirate) level, which has resulted in a flexible system that reduces the burden on central government. At the federal level, policies, strategies and plans regarding water resources are coordinated through the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment.
The Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA) is responsible for the generation, transportation and distribution of water and electricity in Abu Dhabi. In Dubai, Sharjah and Ras Al-Khaimah these tasks are the responsibility of the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA) and Ras Al-Khaimah Electricity and Water Authority, respectively. The Federal Electricity and Water Authority (FEWA) was established in 1999 to generate and distribute electricity and water in the Northern Emirates, i.e. Ajman, Umm Al-Quwain and Fujairah.
Due to the increased demand for water and energy, the government has allowed private companies to participate in its energy and water sector for a number of years.
Privatization of water desalination started in Abu Dhabi with large independent water projects (IWPs) or independent water and power projects (IWPPs) in the early 2000s. This allowed foreign companies to create joint ventures with national companies, which has contributed to the diversification of technology and the reduction of production costs.
In each IWPP, a government authority such as ADWEA retains a 60% equity share while the remaining 40% is held by private investors. All IWPPs are required to sell their water and electricity production and capacity to the Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Company (ADWEC), which is a government-owned subsidiary of ADWEA. This new system, which has built-in incentives to reduce production costs and improve quality, seems to have produced positive results, notably a reduction in cost.
Financing schemes such as build-own-operate (BOO) and build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) have been adopted in some of the new desalination projects. Technically, among the newly adopted practices are hybrid desalination plants, such as the desalination plant in Fujairah. In addition, the desalination market is expected to increase significantly with population growth as well as the expansion in industrial activities and tourism, all compounded by overall improvement in the standard of living.»
«Abu Dhabi will build the world’s largest water desalination plant to serve the emirate and other parts of the UAE.
The Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA) on Tuesday announced the launch of the desalination plant, slated to produce 200 million gallons of water per day using the reverse osmosis technology.
The announcement was made at the World Water Summit and World Future Energy Summit, which are part of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, on until January 20.
Construction on the Dh2 billion project in Al Taweelah area – located approximately 45 kilometres north of Abu Dhabi – will start in 2019 and is scheduled to be completed by 2021. The desalination plant is aimed at boosting water supply in the emirates to meet increasing demand, serving Abu Dhabi and the northern emirates.
Officials said the project will be in two blocks, each producing 100 million Imperial Gallons per Day (MIGD).
Dr Saif Saleh Al Seairi, acting director general of ADWEA, said at the launch of the project: “The desalination of water will be done using reverse osmosis technology, which is cost effective. The production cost will be Dh10 per gallon.”
He added: “The Project is important to secure the potable water supply in the emirate and play a key role in the ongoing cost reduction initiative in the sector by procuring competitive and efficient RO water desalination technology.”»
«The Federal Electricity and Water Authority (Fewa) has announced that it will build six new power stations at the cost of Dh490 million in the new residential areas of Ras Al Khaimah by 2020.
Mohammed Saleh, director-general of Fewa, said more power is needed for the new residential areas in the emirate.
“The same applies to the new and ongoing industrial projects, leave alone the property investment projects at the Al Marjan Island, Al Hamra and RAK marine city.
“The six new power stations are in pursuance of the directives of the prudent leadership to boost the infrastructure capacity and attract more investments.” The new stations include a 132/33/11 KVA power station, with a capacity of 270 MV
The new stations include a 132/33/11 KVA power station, with a capacity of 270 MV to be built at Al Raq area against Dh145 million, he explained.
“Another 132/33/11 KVA power station, with a capacity of 270 MV, will be built at Al Hamra area where some cables will be extended at the cost of Dh145 million.”
Four more 33/11 KVA power stations, worth Dh200 million, will be built at Al Marjan Island, as well as Julphar, Al Filaya and Azan areas, Saleh added.
“Fewa will build more power stations and extend more electricity cables for providing electricity to the new and planned residential areas in the emirate.”
Saleh added that Fewa has expanded the two power stations of Al Sherisha and Al Muairidh area.
“The two 33/11 KVA power stations, worth Dh8 million, will meet the demands of the new houses at these two areas, leave alone the ongoing tourist projects.”»
Abu Dhabi, 25 ago 10:30 – (Agenzia Nova) – L’Autorità federale per l’elettricità e l’acqua (Fewa) degli Emirati Arabi Uniti ha annunciato che entro il 2020 costruirà sei nuove centrali elettriche al costo di 133 milioni di dollari nelle nuove aree residenziali nell’emirato di Ras al Khaimah. Mohammed Saleh, direttore generale di Fewa, ha dichiarato che è necessaria maggiore potenza elettrica per poter sopperire alla domanda delle nuove aree residenziali nell’emirato, ma anche ai progetti industriali in costruzione e da costruire. “Le sei nuove centrali elettriche sono in linea con le direttive della leadership per aumentare la capacità delle infrastrutture e attirare più investimenti”. Le nuove stazioni includono una centrale elettrica (KVA 132/33/11), con una capacità di 270 Mega Volt da costruire nella zona di Al Raq. Un’altra centrale elettrica della stessa capacità verrà realizzata nella zona di Al Hamra dove alcuni cavi saranno estesi al costo di 39 milioni di dollari. Altre quattro centrali elettriche modello 33/11 KVA, del valore di 54 milioni di dollari saranno costruite nell’isola di Al Marjan e nelle aree di Julphar, Al Filaya e Azan. Saleh ha sottolineato che Fewa costruirà più centrali elettriche ed estenderà più cavi elettrici per fornire elettricità alle nuove e programmate aree residenziali dell’emirato. Saleh ha aggiunto che Fewa ha ampliato le due centrali elettriche di Al Sherisha e Al Muairidh.