m starting to wonder if the current US-Saudi relationship might be “unreformable.” You see a certain pattern over and over and you start to think that it might be structural. This pattern can no longer be considered a “mistake.” There must be an underlying structural cause for why this melody keeps getting repeated.
We’ve seen this pattern before in US foreign policy, where the US government appeared to be “captured” by its purported “client.” It happened with Ngô Đình Diệm in Vietnam, it happened with Augusto Pinochet in Chile, it happened with the Mohammad Reza Shah in Iran. The US government reaches a point where it’s very clear that the client is behaving in a way that is not only destructive to himself, but destructive to the interests of the US government, as the US government perceives them. So the US government tells the client to stop behaving like that. But the client doesn’t stop. The client keeps going, harming US interests, as the US government perceives them.
Why doesn’t the client stop when the “patron” tells the client to stop?