Saudi’s have Lot To Lose In Qatar Fight Even If they Win


The Saudi Arabia makes look very small to Qatar on any measure, yet there are a lot of ways the fight between the Gulf neighbors could finish up harming the world’s greatest oil exporter, even if it wins. During this whole week, the Saudis and their partners have tightened up pressure on Qatar, cutting diplomatic ties and forcing a blockade by the ocean, air, and land. They expressed the aim is to force Qatar to quit coming closer to Saudi Arabia’s rival Iran and bankrolling Islamist groups over the district. On the other hand, Qatar said it’s being punished for the things it had not done.

The agreement is long-lasting and the size of the present crisis is new, it’s produced in the Middle East already separated by war. On the other hand, Saudi Arabia has tried to impose its will in Yemen and Syria. As of now, the conflict has spread to the internal circle of the Gulf monarchies, when the Saudis and their young Prince Mohammed bin Salman are desperately looking for foreign investment to modernize an oil-dependent economy. A Beirut-based senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Yezid Sayigh, said that “Most worrying is that Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E. may repeat the mistakes that were made when the Saudi leadership decided to launch a war in Yemen. They had no clear political strategy, based their action on false assumptions, have incurred heavy financial costs and a growing human toll, and are probably now worse off in terms of their security”.

In the other regional clashes, outer forces are being drawn into the Gulf clash, not all of them on Saudi Arabia’s side. The President of US Donald Trump visited the Kingdom last month and tweeted in a support for the Saudi-led campaign, whereas the Pentagon that has one of its greatest overseas bases in Qatar, and the state department have taken a more unbiased position. The Turkey has paced up prior arrangements to deploy some troops to Qatar, and Iran offered alternative transport routes and supplies of staple goods that can no longer be imported from foreign countries. Their support also decreases the chance of a quick Saudi victory. “Turkey has a powerful military. Iran is sending water and food. So now we have two significant forces supporting Qatar,” said Paul Sullivan, a Middle East specialist at Georgetown University in Washington.

From the perspective of Saudi, Qatar has been merging up trouble all over, which includes promoting the Muslim Brotherhood, whose backing of Islam through the ballot polling booth is disliked by some Gulf monarchs. It includes friendly relationships with Iran with which Qatar shares a massive gas field. It includes supporting the Al-Jazeera TV network, which has been skeptical of Saudi partners. On Wednesday, the Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said, “Qatar for many years has taken steps to support certain organizations and intervened in situations. We view Qatar as a brother state,” he said. “But you have to be able to tell your friend or your brother what is right or wrong.” The Saudis and UAE have hinted that they will find a way to make the point, including checks on bank loaning to Qatar and exchanges in its riyal money. The Gas-rich Qatar has money resources of its own, however, to fight an attack.

According to the Sanam Vakil, an associate fellow with the North Africa and the Middle East Programme at Chatham House in London, Qatar will be motivated to oppose by the point of view that what the Saudis are truly after is regime change. Vakil said that Qatar capitulate on these demands is a challenge to its sovereignty. I find it hard to believe they will just roll over”. The Foreign Minister Mohammed Al Thani told reporters in Doha that “We can live forever like this. We aren’t ready to discuss an intervention into our sovereignty”. It doesn’t mean that the pressure won’t come in the end as the Saudi economy is four times greater than of Qatar’s. The population is also 10 times bigger in number, and that internal market helps protects the Saudis from any consequences, said James Reeve, the London-based senior economist at Samba Financial Group.

The stock markets share the perspective of who is more at risk. The primary Saudi’s record witnessed a little change on the week, whereas Qatar’s experienced more than 7 percent. Reeve said that “any dispute of this type is likely to mar the investment climate for all countries. Investors will be reminded that this is a region where political issues can flare up unexpectedly”. The Saudi Arabia can manage the cost of vulnerability in the Middle East, especially on its own creation, at once it’s trying to increase billions of dollars from foreign investors by offering shares of its oil giant Saudi Aramco. In an interview on Wednesday, the U.A.E Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash confirmed that the Gulf’s reputation as a stable destination for capital could take a back seat. “I can’t deny that this rift has its toll,” he said. Gargash also said that there was no other option to go up against Qatar as the fact that other five members of the Gulf Cooperation Council can’t believe a partner that’s “going to be in duplicitous in his policies”.

According to the Theodore Karasik, a senior adviser at Gulf State Analytics said that if Qatar wants to fight back, it could intimidate to pull out of the GCC. “Qatar could begin the process of exiting from the group. This would be a powerful message to all interested parties,” said Karasik and also stated that it would likely to win in the backstage backing from Turkey, Iran and even Russia. The President himself is generally seen as having encouraged the Saudi camp. Trump has also pledged to take a harder line on Iran and hailed King Salman as the main partner. That’s also a reason why when Islamic State struck at the heart of Tehran unexpectedly this time; Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps immediately blamed Saudi Arabia and the US and promised to take revenge. The Gulf governments now at loggerheads were among the “the last somewhat peaceful places in the region. I’m getting worried,” Sullivan said.