From publicly deploring Mohammed bin Salman to changing his foreign policy because of Saudi Arabia, Biden has come a long way. Biden’s foreign policy has been one the most volatile one of US in the recent past. It has taken turns on several occasions in the past. But this time, he’s running all scared to please MBS and Netanyahu.
Remember, American President Joe Biden promising to avenge Jamal Khashoggi’s murder and blaming it on Saudi’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman. He pledged that he’d no longer be sending any weapons to the middle-east country. He had declared that he’d make Saudi ‘a pariah state’.
Fast forward to now, Biden administration is doing everything it can to get Saudi’s MBS in his camp. In July, Biden realised that Saudi Arabia is the key to US’ dominance in middle-east. He wanted OPEC+ which is led by Riyadh to decrease oil prices by increasing production. Saudi Arabia didn’t budge and rather it cut the oil production, further leading to sky-high prices.
In response to the action, the White House stated that it is examining its ties with the Saudis. According to the Biden administration, Russia, another member of OPEC+, is effectively benefiting from the output cut as the war in Ukraine continues. Biden then resorted to politics of blackmail, democratic representatives presenting a legislation that called for the withdrawal of vital US military equipment stationed in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
US’ secretive submarine makes reappearance
US has now, stationed its stealthiest nuclear-powered ballistic submarine in Arabian Sea. It is an Ohio-class SSBN design, which is virtually undetectable.
Nuclear-missile SSBNs normally don’t make public appearances, unlike the Los Angeles-class or Virginia-class nuclear-powered fast attack submarines that can visit ports anywhere in the world and carry conventional weapons. When they do, it mostly happens in American waters or in the ports of the United Kingdom, America’s closest ally. However, a few days ago, the ballistic missile submarine USS West Virginia of the Ohio class made an undisclosed appearance in international waters of the Arabian Sea.
Today the CENTCOM Commander embarked the USS West Virginia Ballistic Missile Submarine pic.twitter.com/fv98lYhD89
— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) October 19, 2022
Analysts regarded the CENTCOM announcement as unexpected because the US typically withholds the location of its ballistic missile submarines. The question is who the signalling was directed at and what the message was after the extraordinary move in the Arabian Sea region, which is roughly near Tehran. This happened when US blamed Iran of providing Russia with drones in its war efforts. It was also meant to please Saudi Arabia and Israel, the arch-rivals of Iran.
Also Read: MBS destroys Biden for trying to reignite a fresh clash between Iran and Saudi Arabia
It recently has been trying to ignite tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia, to boomerang back into the middle-east. USA’s power and leverage in the nation comes from the security it provides to Riyadh.
From first trying to appease Iran by relaxing sanctions, it has taken a complete U-turn of now blaming Iran of helping Russia, while it itself has been prolonging the war by financing war for Ukraine. It now, has sent its stealthiest submarine in a signal to Tehran.
Here, he is trying to appease MBS, who has been concerned of US’ cosying up to Tehran after Biden took the Oval office. It can also be read as a signal to Israel’s Netanyahu who has always had a hostile relationship with Democrats in the US. All in all, Biden has kneeled to MBS and Netanyahu to save his administration’s chuckle some foreign policy.
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