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Thursday, January 09, 2014

The survival genius of the House of Saud

Courtesy of Steve Sailer comes this fascinating explanation on the way the House of Saud survives by destabilizing its rivals by the War Nerd:
The Middle East has been Saudi-ized while we looked on and laughed at those goofy Saudis who didn’t understand progress. No wonder they’re content to play dumb. If we took a serious look at them, they’d be terrifying.

And of all their many skills, the one the Saudis have mastered most thoroughly is disruption. Not the cute tech-geek kind of disruption, but the real, ugly thing-in-itself. They don’t just “turn a blind eye” to young Saudi men going off to do jihad—they cheer them on. It’s a brilliant strategy that kills two very dangerous birds with one plane ticket. By exporting their dangerous young men, the Saudis rid themselves of a potential troublemaker while creating a huge amount of pain for the people who live wherever those men end up.

Saudis have shipped money, sermons, and volunteers to Afghanistan, Bosnia, and Russia’s North Caucasus just as they’re doing now in Syria. It’s a package deal—to get the money, you have to accept the Wahhabism and the volunteers. And it works. The Saudi package is usually resented at first, like it was by the Afghans who were outraged to be told they were “bad Muslims” by Saudi volunteers.

But Afghan Islam has been Wahhabized over time. The same thing happened much more dramatically in Chechnya, where Saudi volunteers showed they were serious about war and religion, a nice change from the coopted quasi-Soviet imams the Chechens had known before. Saudis like Ibn al-Khattab, Abu al-Walid, and Muhannad (all noms de guerre) provided the only real jobs a young man could get in Chechnya, and in the process did a great job of miring the Chechens in an endless war that has killed something like 160,000 people while forcing Chechen women into Saudi-style isolation, eventually leaving Chechnya under the control of Ramzan Kadyrov, a second-generation death-squad commander who does most of the Kremlin’s killing for them. This is a typical Saudi aid result: A disaster for the recipients, the Chechens, and their enemies, the Russians, but a huge win for Saudi. Same thing is going on in the rest of Russia’s North Caucasus, especially in Dagestan, where the Boston Marathon bombers’ parents live.

And one aspect of that victory is the elimination of potentially troublesome young males who might have made trouble inside Saudi. Jihad is like the princess in those fairy tales: It draws all the daring young princes to undertake quests no underwriter would insure, and in the process gets them far away from home during their most aggressive years. Better yet from the Sauds’ POV, most of them die.
It certainly puts a troublesome spin on America's various crusades for global democracy, does it not?

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50 Comments:

Anonymous Heh January 09, 2014 1:23 PM  

By exporting their dangerous young men, the Saudis rid themselves of a potential troublemaker

Can we export our diverse youth? I don't really care where to!

(Sigh) Instead we are importing them...

Anonymous The Scolds' Bridle January 09, 2014 1:27 PM  

72 princesses. Enough to make a man saddle up and start white knighting.

Anonymous REG January 09, 2014 1:28 PM  

If one adds, with the cooperation of the US government, I would tend to agree.

Anonymous Sigyn January 09, 2014 1:30 PM  

In before Jooooos.

Anonymous Starbuck January 09, 2014 1:35 PM  

Interesting that the Saudi's aren't really stirring trouble for Israel...

Blogger Miguel D'Anconia January 09, 2014 1:40 PM  

The house of Saud is a disease. A fully developed shale oil & natural gas program worldwide would go far to makes the Saudi's irrelevant. If they are truly behind the Sochi bombing, hopefully Putin does what needs to be done.

Anonymous Stilicho January 09, 2014 1:46 PM  

Interesting that the Saudi's aren't really stirring trouble for Israel...

That's always been true. The Saudis despise the Palestinians and generally want nothing to do with them. Meanwhile, Israel keeps Saudi Enemy Numero Uno (Iran) somewhat occupied through its proxies in Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine. Israel is generally ok with Saudi instigated disruptions in places like Iraq that keep the locals fighting each other instead of joining together to attack Israel. The recent, former, and generally unlamented ascent of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt would certainly have worried the Israelis and possibly the Saudis as well (too much concentrated power in jihadi hands in a next door neighbor). Note that Jordan, which has no oil to compete with the Saudis and what passes as good relations with Israel for an Arab state has little problem with jihadis compared to Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Libya, etc. In short, Israel and Saudi Arabia have some common interests.

Anonymous Noah B. January 09, 2014 1:53 PM  

In this context, the Russian and Chinese alignment with Iran makes perfect sense.

Anonymous Sigyn January 09, 2014 1:57 PM  

Interesting that the Saudi's aren't really stirring trouble for Israel...

I'm, like, psychic or something.

Anonymous DrTorch January 09, 2014 1:57 PM  

It certainly puts a troublesome spin on America's various crusades for global democracy, does it not?

And makes you wonder what the Chinese will be planning, particularly w/ their m:w ratio.

Anonymous DrTorch January 09, 2014 2:01 PM  

Oh yeah, also makes me wonder if anyone has done an analysis on the results from the US Peace Corps and USAID.

Anonymous kh123 January 09, 2014 2:11 PM  

"Ibn al-Khattab"

The Ted Nugent of the Ummah.

Anonymous cheddarman January 09, 2014 2:17 PM  

I guess the petro dollar seems pretty safe for the near to mid term, with the US, Saudis and Israel backing it...

Anonymous Luke January 09, 2014 2:24 PM  

I got back to the U.S. 3 weeks ago from 2 1/2 months in Saudi Arabia. Some opinions I formed while there:

1) They often don't make decisions very well. Their default paths consist almost entirely of throwing gobs of (relatively ever-decreasing) money, authoritarianism, and Potemkin-type secrecy.

2) Their pride runs very high, and along with their emotionality (think low-humility adolescent royalty mentality) are part of why #1.

3) Their oil production is running down at a rate that clearly frightens their HNICs to the extent they admit it to themselves. There is a (presumably subsequent) recent top-down push to double the # of drilling rigs operating in the Kingdom.

4) However, the Saudis let their pride interfere with using expats efficiently, ever-increasingly so compared with previously. As an example of this, they have let something like 5-10,000 Saudis move into the main camp (Dhahran), such that newly hired expats must now live in camps 65-100 minutes drive away from Dhahran (where most of them work). This makes for work days (including commutes) not infrequently exceeding 14 1/2 hours (ironic given that "work-life balance" is part of how living and working in Saudi Arabia is sold to skilled expats.)

5) Further, the camps (where all First-World expats generally are required to live) are not only ever-higher Saudi %ages, the Saudi's cultural practices are increasingly becoming required there, a source of friction in both directions.

I could go on, but you get the idea.

Blogger Harold Carper January 09, 2014 2:30 PM  

You'd think after a few generations, suicidal behavior would breed itself out.The ME provides yet another evidence against TENS.

Anonymous Porky January 09, 2014 2:31 PM  

You mean they promise great success but deliver disaster so that they can appear heroic as they join the struggle for progress while furtively pursuing their own self interests??

I've never heard of such a thing. No one could be such a diabolical supergenius as to pull off something like that.

Blogger Paul, Dammit! January 09, 2014 2:39 PM  

Well, they absolutely learned something from being on the losing side of the crusades. They used the enemy's tactics against them. Having a worldview that accepts an 800 year wait to actually field their own second sons against the enemy is just... frightening.

Anonymous Gx1080 January 09, 2014 2:53 PM  

Huh. I remember a few years ago, where War Nerd was saying that the big winner on the Middle East was Iran (because they got Iraq off their backs at no investment of their own) and Pakistan (because they lead the US on a wild goose chase while Bin Laden was hiding on an expensive hotel *right next to a military base*.)

Obviously the US has only lost by getting involved on that mess, but discovering who "won" is not so simple.

Anonymous Gx1080 January 09, 2014 2:54 PM  

*when

Anonymous Maximo Macaroni January 09, 2014 2:57 PM  

The Crusaders had the right idea: save the Christians, restore their holy places and destroy all vestiges of Islam. The idea of overthrowing a dictator to give his people a chance to come into the modern world is so nuts that only post-Enlightenment chowderheads could have come up with it. The left pounds on the lie that Bush went to Iraq "for the oil". Actually, that might have been justifiable. But to justify invading Iraq without destroying the epicenter of Islamic terrorism - Mecca - is impossible.

Anonymous Mr. Nightstick January 09, 2014 3:19 PM  

So are you saying we should have backed the Turks?

OpenID cailcorishev January 09, 2014 4:01 PM  

The left pounds on the lie that Bush went to Iraq "for the oil". Actually, that might have been justifiable.

Yeah, that's the funny thing: if Bush had been the oil-stealing monster the left claimed, we'd be better off. Heck, Iraqis on the whole might be too. Our problems over there come from the fact that he really was a "compassionate conservative," meaning "liberal Republican." He really did care more about building schools and voting booths in benighted countries than about the national interests of Americans.

Dunno about anyone else, but I'm still waiting for my cheap stolen oil.

Blogger Tommy Hass January 09, 2014 4:04 PM  

" Maximo Macaroni January 09, 2014 2:57 PM
The Crusaders had the right idea: save the Christians, restore their holy places and destroy all vestiges of Islam. The idea of overthrowing a dictator to give his people a chance to come into the modern world is so nuts that only post-Enlightenment chowderheads could have come up with it. The left pounds on the lie that Bush went to Iraq "for the oil". Actually, that might have been justifiable. But to justify invading Iraq without destroying the epicenter of Islamic terrorism - Mecca - is impossible."

Hey asshole: why don't you go over there and actually do commit some attacks on Islamic targets? Oh wait, you're a chickenshit faggot who thinks being an Internet tough guy is impressive. It isn't.

You cannot destroy "all vestiges of Islam" because if you try, they will end you. Pakistan has nukes, remember? It takes only one to dissuade the west from trying.

In what parallel universe is Mecca the center of terrorism you piece of shit

Blogger Tommy Hass January 09, 2014 4:06 PM  

"So are you saying we should have backed the Turks?"

You're already backing us, bro.

Anonymous patrick kelly January 09, 2014 4:14 PM  

If oil had anything to do with invading Iraq it was to keep their's off the market......

Anonymous patrick kelly January 09, 2014 4:16 PM  

"In what parallel universe is Mecca the center of terrorism..t..."

Where were the 911 hijackers and OBL from? Not Iraq or AStan......

Anonymous JJ January 09, 2014 6:08 PM  

This is not some new strategy, but par for the course in polygamous societies throughout history. When 20% of the men end up with 40% of the women, its going to lead to internal strife among the "losers" in the sexual competition. But when the royalty and nobility send them off to fight a neighboring tribe/society/nation, it relieves the sexual population pressure. The men either succeed, and bring back the wives and daughters of the men they killed as their own, or they fail, and enough die off that they no longer pose a threat. War has always been the way to get rid of surplus men.

Blogger The Anti-Gnostic January 09, 2014 6:08 PM  

@Luke:

What's an HNIC?

Anonymous JJ January 09, 2014 6:13 PM  

Also want to add that its just as unstable in a promiscuous society as well, and arguably even more violent than polygamous. Its also a good example of how culture also played a major factor into the development of European civilization. European aristocrats could have taken as many women as they please as was the norm in African, Muslim, and Asian civilization, but instead embraced monogamy. This brought stability where it was lacking everywhere else. Also, the reversal of the sexual pressure from men onto women actual selects for attractiveness in women. In other words, women are more beautiful in monogamous societies, unlike in polygamous and promiscuous ones.

Anonymous Ferd January 09, 2014 6:25 PM  

"Can we export our diverse youth? I don't really care where to!"

*Chuckles* Why would they want to go fight somewhere else? They have jungleish hunting grounds in all our major cities. And the best part is they get their 72 virgins,NOW!

Anonymous zen0 January 09, 2014 7:36 PM  

"In what parallel universe is Mecca the center of terrorism..t..."

Where were the 911 hijackers and OBL from? Not Iraq or AStan......


To be more correct, one should maybe choose Riyadh. That's where all the anti-terror American Presidents visit.

Blogger TontoBubbaGoldstein January 09, 2014 7:38 PM  

Dunno about anyone else, but I'm still waiting for my cheap stolen oil.

Bush didn't go into Iraq to steal cheap oil for you and me. He went in, to remove cheap oil from the marketplace....benefiting (SURPRISE!) the Saudi's and American producers with their higher extraction costs....
You are not having to wait on your fracking 'Murrcan $100bl oil, which wouldn't be economically feasible if Iraq, Iran, Libya, Venezuela etc were producing anywhere near their capacity.

Anonymous Ibn Saud January 09, 2014 7:58 PM  

Saudis have shipped money, sermons, and volunteers to Afghanistan, Bosnia, and Russia’s North Caucasus just as they’re doing now in Syria.

Don't forget America. We haven't.

Blogger tz January 09, 2014 8:36 PM  

Go off to spread democracy, and the GI bill will pay for your useless degree (so if you survive, you won't be a debt slave to sallie mae).

OTOH, young males become troublesome because of feminism. The only wonder is they aren't smart enough to go "there" and stay.

Anonymous zen0 January 09, 2014 8:56 PM  

In a tribute to American Exceptionalism and competent foreign policy, ZeroHedge reports:

Al Qaeda Now Controls More Territory In The Arab World Than Ever Before

Thank you all for supporting the troops as they laid down their lives for............
Whatever.

Anonymous Mr. Stubby January 09, 2014 9:12 PM  

Americans, spit in their eye and they call it dew.

Go see what Cheney and pals were up to before he became vice Dick.

You don't think Iran is between a-rock and a hard place... just because, do you?

Anonymous zen0 January 09, 2014 9:24 PM  

@ Mr. Stubby:

Go see what Cheney and pals were up to before he became vice Dick.

That is all well and good, but if no one answers the call of the corrupt, who will they use for fodder?

Anonymous bw January 09, 2014 9:52 PM  

In a tribute to American Exceptionalism and competent foreign policy..

You can thank the NGO CFR, the spawn of the Royal Institute for International Affairs, Chatham House, and the Milner Round Table Group for that - as Quigley points out in The Anglo-American Establishment.

http://cictoronto.ca/history/

Why would anyone believe that their intention is exactly what they say it is?
Note the taking down of more secular regimes, and now in their place are more radical ones. If I wanted a perpetual war on terror....
And don't fail to consider the Petro Dollar and the new Central Bank of Iraq.
Oh, and what have we here??
Jul 7, 2013] JPMorgan Chase & Co. is the latest international bank after Citigroup Inc. and Standard Chartered Plc to expand business in Iraq as OPEC’s second-largest ...(Bloomberg)

Anonymous zen0 January 09, 2014 10:09 PM  

Why would anyone believe that their intention is exactly what they say it is?

Agreed. Why do people keep buying it? How many ass-rapings does one need before they think something is amiss?

Anonymous A. Nonymous January 09, 2014 11:09 PM  

Hey asshole: why don't you go over there and actually do commit some attacks on Islamic targets? Oh wait, you're a chickenshit faggot who thinks being an Internet tough guy is impressive. It isn't.

You cannot destroy "all vestiges of Islam" because if you try, they will end you. Pakistan has nukes, remember? It takes only one to dissuade the west from trying.

In what parallel universe is Mecca the center of terrorism you piece of shit


I see Johnny Turk missed the bit where Anatolia and a significant chunk of the rest of the Islamic world were bloodily carved out of the body of Christendom with fire and sword.

Anonymous bob k. mando January 10, 2014 12:51 AM  

Tommy Hass January 09, 2014 4:04 PM
You cannot destroy "all vestiges of Islam" because if you try, they will end you. Pakistan has nukes, remember?



[ totals up nukes held by US and Russia, ~4000. totals up nukes held by Pakistan, <150 ]

[ /Spockbrow ]



Tommy Hass January 09, 2014 4:04 PM
In what parallel universe is Mecca the center of terrorism you piece of shit



uh, the one in which Saudi Arabia has exported terror cells all over the planet from the Phillipines to Australia to Libya to the Twin Towers?

oh, so sorry, to a Muslim Kafirs have no rights and no expectation to be treated fairly and no reason to expect that you won't lie to us.

do carry on.

Blogger Expendable Faceless Minion January 10, 2014 4:58 AM  

@ bob k. mando:
Pakistan supposedly, and probably does, have nukes.

Why haven't they blown up anybody they hate yet? I'd think they'd have nuked Mumbai if they could have managed it. Who convinced them not to blow up hindus?

Blogger Hazim January 10, 2014 6:03 AM  

Vox,
I've learned not to run my mouth too much around here in the last decade, but your conclusion on this one strikes me as uncharacteristically opaque. Given the history we've learned together here I don't understand how you won't at least nudge the pertinent illumination toward the unspeakably obvious equation: Wahabi = Mossad = CIA = KGB = MI-6 = State Department = AIPAC = KKK = Al Qa'ida = Hezb'allah = PLO = Elders of Zion = Skull & Bones = Federal Reserve = Pentagon = Cult of Ra ad ridiculum. Apologies to all I left out, but they are all competing for the favors of the god of this world.

Anonymous Just Mark January 10, 2014 6:58 AM  

Reminds me of the computer game Midevil Total War. Build a crusade then take all your disloyal generals. Drop them in ship them off. Nice.

Anonymous Luke January 10, 2014 7:46 AM  

The Anti-Gnostic January 09, 2014 6:08 PM
@Luke:

"What's an HNIC?"

Head [African} In Charge. Was being a bit snarky about terming their High Command.

Re Mecca: I can attest to the Muslims being obsessed with the Hadj and Medina/Mecca, even the relatively secular-appearing ones. The religion is very geographically-focused, more so than probably any other large one of which I am aware, more so than the Catholic branch of Christianity; it's probably around where Mormonism is that way, I'm guessing. That means that without access to that area, a seriously corrosive effect upon Islam is very likely. The Israelis undoubtedly thought of this long ago, when they set up targeting for their nukes.

Oh, and the productive/secular/stable/smarter fraction of Turkey is already reproducing at under replacement rate, just as is Iran as a whole. Explains why a fundy party has taken over in the former, and the reformers have politically receded in the latter.

OpenID cailcorishev January 10, 2014 9:26 AM  

Bush didn't go into Iraq to steal cheap oil for you and me. He went in, to remove cheap oil from the marketplace

That may have been the case, but it wasn't the leftist narrative at the time, which was: we're going over there to steal their oil so we'll have cheap gas for our Texas-sized, 5-mpg, environmentally-destructive SUVs.

Come to think of it, does the left hate SUVs anymore? Can't say I've heard much of that lately. Maybe too many of them bought one to keep that up.

Blogger The Anti-Gnostic January 10, 2014 9:31 AM  

That means that without access to that area, a seriously corrosive effect upon Islam is very likely. The Israelis undoubtedly thought of this long ago, when they set up targeting for their nukes.

I agree with this. I don't think Islam would survive the leveling and occupation of Medina.

I have met some Arab Muslims. But too many of them is a f***ing mess, every single time. I don't know if it's the Arab blood or the Muslim culture.

Blogger The Anti-Gnostic January 10, 2014 9:32 AM  

* I have met some sterling Arab Muslims...

Anonymous Luke January 10, 2014 9:46 AM  

Related classic short essay: "Why Arabs Lose Wars".

http://www.strategypage.com/dls/articles2002/20020909.asp

Anonymous bob k. mando January 10, 2014 1:18 PM  

Expendable Faceless Minion January 10, 2014 4:58 AM
Pakistan supposedly, and probably does, have nukes.



uhhh, yeah. that's what i said.

so ... thanks for agreeing with me?



Expendable Faceless Minion January 10, 2014 4:58 AM
Who convinced them not to blow up hindus?


well, ya got me there. i didn't bother totaling up Indian nukes because, like Pakistan, they really don't have anything in comparison to Russ-USA. India ALSO has <150 nukes.

the answer to the question being, the hindus convinced Pakistan not to blow up the hindus.

the India-Pakistan salient has long been considered the most likely place for the next use of nuclear weapons as the cross border calisthenics between India and Pakistan tend to be rather more robust and common than what the US and China / Russia tend to get involved in.


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