Does This Mean We Won't Have to Save Saudi Arabia Anymore?

Nawaf Obaid writes a stinging Saudi critique of U.S. foreign policy, and promises that, in the future, Saudi Arabia will be setting its own course:

To counter the threats posed by Iran and transnational terrorist networks, the Saudi leadership is authorizing more than $100 billion of additional military spending to modernize ground forces, upgrade naval capabilities and more. The kingdom is doubling its number of high-quality combat aircraft and adding 60,000 security personnel to the Interior Ministry forces. Plans are underway to create a "Special Forces Command," based on the U.S. model, to unify the kingdom's various special forces if needed for rapid deployment abroad.

Great! I would give the muscled-up Saudi Arabia at least six hours before it totally collapsed in the face of an Iranian onslaught. The pre-muscled up Saudi Arabia I would only give four.

Now, on the other hand, if Saudi Arabia were to be invaded by orphan girls, I'm sure they could handle it:

Six orphan girls aged between 12 and 18 were flogged in Saudi Arabia after being convicted of attacking the head of their orphanage, an official said on Tuesday.

The girls received 10 lashes each under the country's strict interpretation of Islamic law at a women's prison in Medina, Islam's second holiest city, in the west of the desert state.



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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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