Thursday, February 09, 2012

Barry Rubin: Gulf Arab Leaders: Obama Administration Is Biggest Threat to our Security

By Barry Rubin

Want to understand the real Middle East? Then pay attention to the following. Let’s say an important and outspoken Gulf Arab gave a frank and thoughtful assessment of the region’s security problems. What would he say and what would that tell you? And how would that differ from the stereotypes of what Arabs — especially non-Islamist Arab leaders — think as presented by the Western media and academia?

In fact, Dahi Khalfan Tamim recently gave such a speech. He is the respected police chief of Dubai. I don’t agree that everything he says reflects reality but I believe — and there is plenty of other evidence for this assertion — that everything he says reflects what the Gulf Arab elite thinks.

First, let’s quote President Barack Obama’s State of the Union message:
“The United States [is] safer and more respected around the world.”
Is America seen as weak and unreliable? No, says Obama:
“That’s not the message we get from leaders around the world, all of whom are eager to work with us. That’s not how people feel from Tokyo to Berlin; from Capetown to Rio; where opinions of America are higher than they’ve been in years.”
More respected? Higher opinions? Well what does Tamim think? Just this:

“In my opinion, U.S. policy in the region is the number one security threat. Our American friends might not like this, but experience has taught us that the Americans do not have friends. On the contrary, they are quick to wash their hands of their friends.”
Continue reading Gulf Arab Leaders: Obama Administration Is Biggest Threat to our Security

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reportsand now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media

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