GL2814 pointed out this Al-Monitor article to me and asked “is Richard Haas right?”…about, I guess, blowback in KSA of support for ISIS, which comes in the form of private donations and young citizens going off to war for ISIS and Al Queda in other countries.
The blowback highlighted by the Al-Monitor article is the idea that the young KSA citizens will return to overthrow the kingdom in favor of the “Islamic caliphate“.
I don’t really see this happening, because my sense is that the Saudi royals enjoy, from first-class Saudi citizens and the odd wannabe,
the same affection and deference as exists in England for Princess Diana
or in Japan for Emperor Akihito.
In other words, the Saudi royals are untouchable and orthogonal to everyday ambitions, including ones of politics and jihad.
So this leads us to a bit of source analysis. According to Wikipedia, though some people think Al-Monitor is a Shiite tool, I note that the Rand Corporation is on the board. There has been no recorded meeting in history, for any purpose, of any old white guy from Rand
and any living mullah from Qom.
No mullahs from Qom on the board, no Shiite bias. Suppose Al-Monitor is written by old white guys in Pasadena.
Then how do we read this article? As wishful thinking? Trying to make the guys in igals and ghutras living in Riyadh a little paranoid?
Or is it to make other old white guys in the United States less likely to think that KSA has been up to no good, so they will cut KSA some slack, which will result in some maneuvering room needed by the current administration? Just asking. I have no clue.