President George W. Bush and [Saudi] King Abdullah formalized new cooperation on Friday between the kingdom and the United States on a range of topics, including the development of civilian nuclear energy in Saudi Arabia and US protection of Saudi oil fields.
The agreements came as Saudi Arabian leaders made clear that they saw no reason to increase oil production until their customers demanded it, apparently rebuffing a request made by the president directly to the king in an effort to stay the soaring US gasoline prices. — Jerusalem Post
I wish I had been a fly on the wall to hear the discussion, but Mr. Bush must have said something like this:
“We’ll help you develop nuclear technology (theoretically only for non-military use), and we’ll use our military forces — already fighting the Iranians for your interests in Iraq — to protect your oil fields. In return, you’ll keep the price of oil high in order to crush our economy. At the same time, you’ll use your windfall profits to finance the most radical forms of Islamic fundamentalism around the world, including in the USA.”
“In the Israeli-Palestinian arena, we’ll continue to support the Fatah terrorists so that they can form a unity government with the Hamas terrorists, splitting the latter from Iran. We’ll force the Israelis to give up land for a new Sunni state on their doorstep. We’re equipping and training its army right now.”
“Maybe we’ll get Israel to fight Hezbollah in Lebanon for you. That will weaken both Israel and Iran.”
What a great deal!
Update — Saudi Arabia has agreed to increase oil production by about 3.3% — a token increase which did not prevent oil from reaching a new high of $128/bbl. today.
Who’s in charge here?