COMMENTARY: China-Russia-Saudi Arabia: Globe’s Next Superpower

By Joseph J. Honick

Joseph J. Honick

Joseph J. Honick
Many in the west believe the U.S. will comfortably maintain its position as the world’s most powerful country for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, that belief is mostly nationalistic and dangerously unfounded in reality.
Politicians and propagandists who, together with highly paid PR operations, choose to echo slogans and shallow campaign oratory instead of the foresight needed in this increasingly complex world, a place in which nations we thought of as helpless have risen to power.

A year ago, the New York Times revealed the State Department’s frustration with money flowing easily from residents of our alleged ally Saudi Arabia to militants said to include Al Qaeda, Taliban, Hamas and other groups. The amazing story by the Times’ Eric Lichtblau and Eric Schmitt revealed a hitherto classified memo from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that made it clear residents of Saudi Arabia and its neighbors are the chief financial supporters of many extremist groups.

According to the article which quoted State cables, “It has been an ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist financing emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority” the State cable concluding “donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.”

Meanwhile, days ago, came the announcement the U.S. has approved the sale of fighter aircraft to the Saudis and billions more in other weaponry to the United Arab Emirates.

Given enough recent history to know these folks don’t let their sons and daughters get in the way of enemy fire and other dangers while American and other NATO allies take on those challenges, one might ask what the hell is going on here.  Or, more to the point, why are no members of Congress or the media raising these questions at all?

The developing relationship of the Saudis with Russia and China has crept into this setting. Who started it is not as important as the combination has been virtually ignored by media that claim to print and broadcast everything we need to know and politicians more concerned with a presidential campaign than a nation’s future.

As one authority, Nadir Mir, author of “Gwadar on the Global Chessboard” and a retired Pakistani General, has put it:  “The global geopolitical environment must be grasped pragmatically.  The western world’s dominance in world affairs appears to be fading” at least economically as China and Russia continue to rise as informal partners and as massive investors in Western opportunities along with Arab nations.

Today, anti-Americanism is rampant in places like Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, most of the Arab world and those who are financed by these fountains of incalculable wealth and who finance major public relations, lobbying and other  propaganda opportunities in the west.

It is no accident, then, that nations that have much to gain from each other could quietly develop a major economic relationship. According to Tim Niblock, professor of Arab Gulf Studies at the U.K.’s  University of Exeter and reported by the University of Pennsylvania‘s Wharton School [of Business], the “growing Sino-Saudi oil trade is a reflection of the two countries’ mutually dependent relationship that has advanced fairly steadily since 2000.”

According to the review, the Chinese need Saudi Arabia as a stable, established oil producer—all the more so today as turmoil across the Middle East continues.  The Saudis need (and like) China’s growing demand for oil.  What has not been publicized as much is the Saudi dissatisfaction with our support for the undermining of Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak and our backing of Libyan rebels and what has come to be known as the “Arab Spring.”

Strangely, or perhaps not, D.C. lobbying powerhouse Patton Boggs was  somehow retained by poor rebels for the price tag of a reported $67K per month, the money’s source still not clearly known.

Enter the Russian growing level of billionaires looking for investments and an enhanced competitive position with the U.S., all of which have led to this new triad of China-Saudi Arabia-Russia.

Even of still greater importance is the aggressive effort of China to become the fiscal savior for the struggling Eurozone.  This comes as major Arab wealth is invested as well into potential propaganda channels like Twitter.

This then repeats the question as to why we are selling the fighter aircraft, ammo etc. to the Saudis and Emirates.The larger question is why neither major media nor major politicians who want to lead this country are probing these concerns while slobbering all over the presidential campaign that lacks even the most fundamental sense of issues vital to the nation and the world.

                                                                * * *

This commentary was originally published in O’Dwyer’s PR Report and is reprinted by permission. Joseph J. Honick is president of GMA International in Bainbridge Island, Wash. He is an international consultant to business and government and writes for many publications, including www.huntingtonnews.net. Look for his blogspot on HNN. 
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