Report: Riyadh Sees Any Threat to Order in the Region as Gain for Iran, Syria, Hizbullah


As pro-democracy uprisings spread across the Middle East, Saudi authorities are feeling increasingly isolated and concerned that Washington may no longer be a reliable backer, officials and diplomats told the New York Times.

“The Saudis are completely encircled by the problem, from Jordan to Iraq to Bahrain to Yemen,” said one Arab diplomat, voicing a view that is common in the halls of power in Riyadh.

“Saudi Arabia is the last heavyweight U.S. ally in the region facing Iran,” he said.

The Saudis tend to see any threat to the established order in the region as a gain for their nemesis Iran, and its allies Syria and Hizbullah, said the newspaper.

Riyadh has grown increasingly worried that the Obama administration is drifting away from this perspective and supporting movements for change whose outcome cannot be guaranteed, it said.