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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/22/22

Who Will be the Next King of Saudi Arabia?

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Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has jailed everyone who poses a threat to his path to becoming King. King Salman's brother, his brother's son, Mohammed bin Nayef, and two sons of the previous monarch, King Abdullah, remain under arrest, while a Princess was released from prison recently.

King Abdullah died on January 23, 2015, and the throne passed to Salman, one of the two living sons of the founder of Saudi Arabia, Abdul Aziz Al Saud, while on the same day King Salman named Muhammed bin Nayef as the Crown prince.

Salman's younger full brother, Prince Ahmad bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, is the other son of the founder of Saudi Arabia.

In March 2020, Prince Ahmad was detained in Saudi Arabia in what can be termed as house arrest after returning from London, with assurances that he would be free.

The government of King Salman is solely run by Crown Prince Mohammed, his young son, otherwise known as MBS. It was MBS who issued the orders to arrest his Uncle, Prince Ahmad, and the former Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Nayef, his cousin.

Both Prince Ahmad and Prince Mohammed bin Nayef received their higher education in America, and both had formerly held the position of Minister of the Interior.

Prince Ahmad opposed MBS becoming Crown Prince, while Mohammed bin Nayef held the position in 2017. Prince Ahmad sits on a Royal family body that is charged with the approval of the accession to the throne of Saudi Arabia.

In February 2017, Mike Pompeo, as head of the CIA, awarded Mohammed bin Nayef the George Tenet Medal in recognition of his "excellent intelligence performance, in the domain of counter-terrorism".

On 21 June 2017, Crown Prince Muhammed bin Nayef was replaced as the heir to the Saudi Kingdom by MBS in a move considered to be "upending decades of royal custom and profoundly reordering the kingdom's inner power structure." He also lost his position as interior minister. He had been crown prince and first deputy prime minister of Saudi Arabia from 2015 to 2017 and the minister of interior from 2012 to 2017.

Bruce Riedel, a former CIA analyst and counter-terrorism expert, served for 29 years until his retirement in 2006. He recalled Vice President Al Gore's visit to Saudi Arabia in May 1998, when Prince Mohammed bin Nayef and his father Prince Nayef had prevented a plot by Al Qaeda to attack the US consulate in Jeddah while Gore was there.

Riedel said of Mohammed bin Nayef's imprisonment, "He has not faced any judicial process that we know of. The charge of treason is absurd. He is in prison because he is the symbol of a viable, competent alternative to the reckless and dangerous crown prince. Mohammed bin Salman wants to eliminate the leading candidate for leading Saudi Arabia away from its current perilous course and back to being a responsible partner. The Biden team, especially its new intelligence leadership, should press for MBN's freedom."

In November 2017, MBS ordered his relatives to be rounded up like criminals and locked up dozens of Princes at the luxurious Ritz Carlton Hotel in Riyadh. MBS billed the shake-down as an anti-corruption operation while draining his relatives of much of their money.

On June 21, 2018, Ben Hubbard, NYT journalist and author, received an Arabic text message on his cellphone that looked suspicious. After consulting with technology researchers at Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto's Munk School, it was confirmed that Hubbard was the first US journalist targeted by powerful software sold by NSO Group, an Israeli company, and deployed by hackers working for Saudi Arabia.

Jeff Bezos, the owner of Amazon and the Washington Post, had similarly been hacked by the same Pegasus software on orders from MBS, in an intimidation tactic for the Washington Post's reporting that their journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, had been executed in 2018 on orders of MBS.

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Steven Sahiounie Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter Page       Linked In Page       Instagram Page

I am Steven Sahiounie Syrian American award winning journalist and political commentator Living in Lattakia Syria and I am the chief editor of MidEastDiscours I have been reporting about Syria and the Middle East for about 8 years

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