Current Magazine

What Next for Saudi Arabia? New Crown Prince Nayef Anointed

Posted on the 28 October 2011 by Periscope @periscopepost
What next for Saudi Arabia? New crown prince Nayef anointed

Prince Nayef. Photocredit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wfrCX1ugF4Q

Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz, the interior minister of Saudi Arabia is a septuagenarian; he’s now been named as the Crown Prince, which means that he stands to inherit the throne. Saudi Arabia is a key country for global stability – it’s one of the top oil exporters – and its help is also needed in the fight against terrorism. What does this vitally important succession mean for the world? Commentators are cautiously optimistic as a picture emerges of a hardliner who, despite his allegiances, may be willing to move with the times.

Not a little prince. He’s a half-brother of the current King Abdullah: his full brother was King Fahd. He’s a member of the powerful Sudairi Seven (a well-favoured princely clique.) Al Jazeera’s profile gave the facts: he was born in the west of Saudi Arabia in 1934, and was governor of Riyadh when “barely 20”; he worked in the interior ministry and was made its head in 1975. His work there has centred on “stamping out” perceived “threats to Saudia Arabia’s stability.” His security forces number 130,000., and his power base is with Islamists; however, though he is supported by the Wahhabi clerics, he doesn’t like the Muslim Brotherhood – since he sees them as a threat to the royal family.

“It is impossible that 19 youths carried out the operation of September 11, or that bin Laden or Al Qaeda did that alone. … I think [the Zionists] are behind these events,” said Prince Nayef, quoted on The New York Sun.

We should be scared? Nayef is a hardliner, said Tara McKelvey on The Daily Beast. He’s well admired as an administrator, “formidable and imperious”, but also “a known quantity” in Washington. His counterterrorism efforts have been “aggressive”, led by his son, Muhammad. A moderniser he may not be, but he has adopted a “forward-looking approach”, reprogramming prisoners away from violence and extremism. Whether the programme has been successful or not is another matter. He’s also an advocate of military force, sending troops into Bahrain to put down the uprising.

Maybe not. However, McKelvey continued, there is hope: King Abdullah is moving towards a more open government, allowing women the vote (though the change won’t be implemented until 2015.) He’s also invested in housing and the public sector. People are worried that the pious Nayef will be at the mercy of darker forces. But people change – and Nayef has been in the administration whilst Abdullah’s reformed. Nayef’s an old horse – and a “survivor”. Saudi Arabia will need a strong hand when Abdullah goes, and it looks like Nayef’s the man.

“Political dissent seems to get under his skin,” said Human Rights Watch’s Christoph Wilcke, quoted on The Daily Beast, “and the Saudi response to Arab Spring activities at home has been unflinching repression.”

Watch out for the little princes. Hey may be the man, but he’s an old man,  said The Economist. Saudia Arabia is governed by “a coterie of very old, very conservative princes”, more and more out of touch with the world. Nayef has “severe diabetes, wobbly knees and a famously mercurial temperament.” He doesn’t like women’s rights; he’s stifled freedom of speech, and he has close ties to the conservative Sunnis. He also doesn’t like Iran. His son, Muhammad is the one that should be credited for the anti-terrorism techniques. By the time the present King dies, the council of princes who will ratify the choice of the King will be dominated by younger princelings – and maybe they will show their teeth and choose one of their own.


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Ralph's Top 10 Blogged Band Chart - as Played on Radio KC - 28.5.17

    Ralph's Blogged Band Chart Played Radio 28.5.17

    Click here for the Ralph's Life websiteTracks from the Top Ten Blogged Bands are played every Sunday 5-7pm on Radio KC as part of Ralph's Indie Show.LISTEN TO... Read more

    7 hours, 54 minutes ago by   Mike Lindley
    ENTERTAINMENT, MUSIC
  • Top 3 Ways to Improve Your Health

    Ways Improve Your Health

    I recently listened to an American comedian, who in a sketch was advising a man whose girlfriend had just left him to let her go. "She's not worth it" she told... Read more

    7 hours, 56 minutes ago by   Dietdoctor
    DIET & WEIGHT, HEALTH, HEALTHY LIVING, MEDICINE
  • Maria’s Pancakes

    Maria’s Pancakes

    Meal plansGet lots of weekly low-carb meal plans, complete with shopping lists and everything, with our premium meal planner tool (free trial).... Read more

    8 hours, 52 minutes ago by   Dietdoctor
    DIET & WEIGHT, HEALTH, HEALTHY LIVING, MEDICINE
  • Cavendish Beach Music Festival 2017 Preview: Zac Brown Band Top 10

    Cavendish Beach Music Festival 2017 Preview: Brown Band

    If you love country music, and you love festivals, and you love to party... then Sunday night at the Cavendish Beach Music Festival is def. going to be your... Read more

    9 hours, 23 minutes ago by   Phjoshua
    LIFESTYLE, SELF EXPRESSION
  • My Envy Box May 2017 Unboxing

    Envy 2017 Unboxing

    Hello everyone, what’s up? How are you surviving this heat? I fell sick so many times while I was out in the daytime. Please drink lots of fluid and stay... Read more

    9 hours, 29 minutes ago by   Jhilmil D Saha
    HAIR & BEAUTY
  • Holiday Beauty Prep • Made Easy

    Holiday Beauty Prep Made Easy

    We are fast approaching the summer holidays where the only stress of our day should be deciding what cocktail to order. Hot sunshine, white sands, crystal... Read more

    9 hours, 38 minutes ago by   Kellilash
    HAIR & BEAUTY, LIFESTYLE
  • Softening the Edges

    Softening Edges

    This post will probably be of interest to anyone who is growing trailing plants, such as tomatoes, courgettes and squashes, in containers. Read more

    9 hours, 48 minutes ago by   Mwillis
    GARDENING, HOME

Paperblog Hot Topics

Magazines