Day after day it is becoming more evident that the influential role of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) States, led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, cannot be disregarded in the United States and this was demonstrated through many signs and many positions in diverse destinations.
In the Russian-Ukrainian war, which has become a war with the West and its allies, Washington tried to adopt the Gulf position on the issue of oil and energy, in order to put pressure on the Russian energy giant, and turn oil into a political weapon, but Saudi Arabia refused to politicize energy, and insisted on limiting the issue to the market language based on the equation of supply and demand. Therefore, it insisted on keeping the OPEC Plus agreement, which was originally its brainchild.
What is surprising is that a number of Western writers, media professionals and politicians have always blamed Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States for politicizing the issue of energy and oil, and they recall in this regard the 1973 war and the oil weapon. So why today do they want a reverse to this trend!?
While observing the American ‘confusion’ in understanding the Gulf politics at present, the Egyptian political researcher and writer Dr. Abdel Moneim Saeed says that there are ideologies or schools within the American elite class with regard to dealing with Gulf politics.
The exponents of the first ideology are those who had worked in the Gulf and are now taking the issue as a kind of ‘misunderstanding’ that can be sorted out through dialogue. The second is a pragmatic ideology and those, who espoused it in the midst of the current international polarization, think that there is no choice but to seek help from historical partners who have distinct capabilities.
The third is the enthusiastic ideologues, who see that the liberal sun of America has risen, and hence whoever is not with Washington are in fact against it.
When examining the above trends, it is evident that these different schools are turning a blind eye to three great facts: the first is that the United States and its place in the world have changed. The second is that the Arab countries located on the Gulf and further afield have also changed, and thirdly the whole world has changed as well.
It is also astonishing to notice how the current US Administration is not acquainted closely with the reform experiments taking place in the Gulf States and other Arab countries and their near and far prospects. Here, as it is said, there is ignorance, or rather an intentional ‘ignorance’ of the realities of the great and profound changes taking place on the coasts of the Arabian Gulf, especially in Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
There is a new unprecedented political, social and economic vitality, regarding all issues, and things are no longer counted as what some Washington elites are accustomed to reckon with.
If the analysts, observers and opinion makers in the United States of America and its allies in Europe do not understand this new mentality and vitality that has emerged on the coasts of the Arabian Gulf, they do nothing but make things difficult for themselves and the Gulf countries as well so that we do not tell lies to ourselves… But in any case, the train has set off in the Arabian Peninsula and it will proceed without a halt.
— This article was originally published in Asharq Al-Awsat.