Our support of the family of Saud goes back to 1938 when American petroleum engineers from Standard of New York discovered oil on its land. They’ve been more or less an American protectorate ever since.
Ronald Reagan’s first foreign policy initiative in 1981 was the sale to the Saudis of AWACS planes. This gave them some protection from the Israeli Air Force, and was strenuously opposed by Israel and its American allies in AIPAC. But the Gipper prevailed, and soon afterward the Saudis began flooding the world crude oil markets, driving the spot price per barrel down to as low as $8. As in “eight”.
It broke the Russians, whose only source of hard currency was the sale of crude oil. The Soviets collapsed because they didn’t have the money for an arms race. The Saudis did that for us, and the world, and we haven’t forgotten.
Tomorrow Trump heads to Saudi Arabia, where he will meet as many as 20 Sunni heads of state, assembled for him by the Saudis. A Sunni Arab NATO is being formed, headed by the Saudis, and including Egypt, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, the various Gulf states, and any Sunni Arab who wants to join, including the Kurds.
Trump will announce one of the largest and most comprehensive arms sales in Middle East history. Obama’s tilt to Iran is over. In the never ending war between Shia and Sunni, we’re on the Sunni, or Saudi, side. Israel is cheering from the sideline.
This is what Trump will be accomplishing on his first two stops overseas, in Saudi Arabia and Israel. While he’s in his third, the Vatican, I hope he publicly defends this country from the socialist Pope. Saint John Paul II is dishonored by having this sappy sermonizer as Pope. He needs to be put in his place.
All of the foregoing is important to the promotion of our national interests. What Trump is doing is of world historical significance. Together, the Americans, the Russians and the Saudis can control the world’s oil markets. If we’re all getting along, we have a mutual interest in maintaining the price at a reasonable level.
As the world’s swing, or marginal oil producer, we can control the price of oil through the use of export taxes. Every barrel of crude, and every mcf of natural gas, would have to pay an export fee to the United States Treasury in order to leave our borders.
We would be using our oil wealth to advance our own interest. We’ve done it before. Both World Wars were won with American oil.
So the next time you run across an American petroleum engineer, buy him a beer.