Saudi Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Al al-Shaikh
Washington Free Beacon…
Saudi Arabia’s top Muslim leader recently issued a religious decree calling for all Christian churches on the Arabian peninsula to be demolished, a move that elicited protests from the U.S. government and undermines recent efforts in the kingdom to promote interfaith tolerance.
Saudi Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdulaziz Al al-Shaikh issued the fatwa, or Muslim religious decree, on March 11, although government-controlled media in the country so far have not reported it.
Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah Al al-Sheikh Grand Mufti of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Joel C. Rosenberg…
“Why is it that when Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah Al al-Sheikh, the grand mufti of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, declares that it is ‘necessary to destroy all the churches in the Arabian Peninsula,’ the major media do not see this as even worth reporting?”asks Middle East expert Cliff May in a story I’d encourage you to read and share with others. “And no one, to the best of my knowledge, has noted that he said this to the members of a terrorist group. Here are the facts: Some members of the Kuwaiti parliament have been seeking to demolish churches or at least prohibit the construction of new ones within that country’s borders. So the question arose: What does sharia, Islamic law, have to say about this issue?
Premier Wen Jiabao talks with family members of Abdul-Rahman Ali Al-Jeraisy, president of the Saudi Arabia-China Friendship Association, during a visit to his home in Riyadh on Sunday. Liu Weibing / Xinhua
Economic Collapse Blog…
The largest oil exporter in the Middle East has teamed up with the second largest consumer of oil in the world (China) to build a gigantic new oil refinery and the mainstream media in the United States has barely even noticed it. This mammoth new refinery is scheduled to be fully operational in the Red Sea port city of Yanbu by 2014. Over the past several years, China has sought to aggressively expand trade with Saudi Arabia, and China now actually imports more oil from Saudi Arabia than the United States does. In February, China imported 1.39 millionbarrels of oil per day from Saudi Arabia. That was 39 percent higher than last February. So why is this important? Well, back in 1973 the United States and Saudi Arabia agreed that all oil sold by Saudi Arabia would be denominated in U.S. dollars. This petrodollar system was adopted by almost the entire world and it has had great benefits for the U.S. economy. But if China becomes Saudi Arabia’s most important trading partner, then why should Saudi Arabia continue to only sell oil in U.S. dollars? And if the petrodollar system collapses, what is that going to mean for the U.S. economy?
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The Financial Times…
Saudi Arabia is taking steps to cool the overheating global energy market, boosting its exports to the US and re-opening old oilfields to expand production, as the world’s largest oil producer tries to prevent damage to the global economic recovery.
The Saudi cabinet on Monday said the kingdom would work “individually” and with others for the “return [of] oil prices to fair levels”. Riyadh recently said it aimed to keep oil prices at $100.
Saudi Arabian troops rolling into Bahrain 2011
WASHINGTON — The so-called Arab Spring just passed the 15-month mark and continues to leave chaos in its wake. Dictators are falling and radical Islamists are filling the gap across the Middle East and North Africa.
Now Islamists have their sights on a bigger prize, and it could send shock waves through the United States.
From The Financial Times…
Oil leapt to the highest level since the market peak of mid-2008 in a frenzy of buying that followed a disputed report of a pipeline blast in Saudi Arabia.
The report, swiftly denied by a Saudi official, was posted on web sites including PressTV, an English-language news channel based in Tehran. Iran is the Saudi kingdom’s main rival in the Middle East oil market, and stands to lose market share as western sanctions increase over its nuclear programme.
(photo of the pipeline under fire)
Among the many factors responsible for the jump in WTI to just shy of $109 over the past hour, and Brent to new records in various currencies, is the following news reported so far only by Iranian PressTV: “An explosion has hit oil pipelines in the flashpoint Saudi Arabian city of Awamiyah in the kingdom’s oil-rich Eastern Province.“
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From The New York Times…
The United States must support the Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations this month or risk losing the little credibility it has in the Arab world. If it does not, American influence will decline further, Israeli security will be undermined and Iran will be empowered, increasing the chances of another war in the region.