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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 7-Mar-2015
7-Mar-15 World View -- Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan seek 'Sunni unity' versus Iran

Web Log - March, 2015

7-Mar-15 World View -- Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan seek 'Sunni unity' versus Iran

After a year, experts still guessing about Malaysia Airlines 370

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan seek 'Sunni unity' versus Iran


Erdogan and Salman meet in Riyadh on March 2 (Reuters)
Erdogan and Salman meet in Riyadh on March 2 (Reuters)

Iran's influence in the Mideast has been increasing rapidly in recent weeks:

These fast-moving events are triggering fast-moving policy changes, and sharpening the Sunni-Shia sectarian divide in the Mideast, as it heads for a sectarian war.

Last week, Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdogan traveled to Saudi Arabia's capital city Riyadh, and on Monday met with the new King of Saudi Arabia, King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud. Pakistanís Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came to Riyadh later last week, also to meet with King Salman. According to press reports, the main subjects of discussion were plans to for Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, along with other countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), to develop strategic plans to seek "Sunni unity" to oppose Iran and, at the same time, to fight ISIS.

The meetings will no doubt reaffirm previous agreements for Pakistan to supply Saudi Arabia with nuclear weapons and nuclear-capable missiles, if Iran develops a nuclear weapon.

An additional area of apparent agreement between Saudi Arabia and Turkey is the need for a no-fly zone over Syria to prevent attacks by the regime of Syria's president Bashar al-Assad. Erdogan has repeatedly demanded this, in order to fight both ISIS and al-Assad, while the Obama administration has firmly opposed it, wanting to fight only ISIS. Al Monitor and The Nation/AFP (Pakistan) and Debka

Turkey's Erdogan shuts out Al-Sisi and Egypt from discussions

As we reported last week, reported last week, Egypt's president Abdel al-Fattah al-Sisi was also in Riyadh last week visiting King Salman, but their paths didn't cross.

When Erdogan was asked whether he met with al-Sisi, he responded, "You've got to be kidding." Erdogan is still furious at al-Sisi for the 2013 coup that ousted Egypt's first popularly elected president, Mohamed Morsi, along with his Muslim Brotherhood government. "After the coup, I cannot justify sitting at the same table with him," he added.

Turkey's support for the Muslim Brotherhood has been a source of tension in the region, negatively affecting Turkey's relations not only with Egypt but also Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Salman's predecessor, King Abdullah II, who died in January, was firmly opposed to the Muslim Brotherhood, and sided with Egypt. However, Salman appears to be moving away from Egypt and moving closer to Turkey, which could mean a change in policy towards the Brotherhood.

There is concern in Egypt of a cutoff of the billions of dollars of aid that has been coming from Saudi Arabia, UAE and Kuwait since the 2013 coup, if Salman turns against Egypt.

Long-time readers are aware that about ten years ago I predicted, based on a Generational Dynamics analysis, that China, Pakistan and the Sunni Muslim countries would be the enemies of India, Russia, Iran, Israel and the West in the coming Clash of Civilizations world war. This prediction was completely reasonable based on a generational analysis that I've explained a number of times, but even so, ten years ago, this prediction seemed fantastical. So it's been quite startling, particularly in the last year, to see this prediction come closer and closer to fruition, step by step.

However, the role of Egypt in this alignment has yet to be determined. Recent trends indicate that Egypt will be aligned with the West rather than the Sunni Gulf countries, but it's also possible that Egypt itself will be split into warring factions. Al Ahram (Cairo) and Yeni Safak (Turkey) (trans) and Today's Zaman (Turkey)

After a year, experts still guessing about Malaysia Airlines 370

It was a year ago, on March 8, 2014, that Malaysia Airlines flight 370, on a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, simply disappeared, and has has not been found yet.

What I found most bizarre was the coverage of the disappearance by people who had no clue what had happened. CNN was the most spectacular about this, with 24x7 coverage. One "expert" would say it had crashed into the South China Sea, another said it was hijacked and had landed in the Mideast, and another said it was in the water just south of India. It was one meaningless guess after another, filling up hours of television. I turned it off pretty quickly, but not before wondering why the experts didn't just say that the Martians had gotten it, and leave it at that.

Still, the incident was a tragedy for Malaysia and for Malaysian Airlines. The families of the passengers are still waiting for some word, any word, about whether their loved ones had somehow survived, or were confirmed dead. China's official media criticized the Malaysian government's apparent incompetence in handling the investigations, and there were demonstrations outside the Malaysian embassy in Beijing.

And, of course, Malaysia Airlines suffered another disaster several months later, when Russian-backed anti-government militias in eastern Ukraine shot down Malaysian Airlines flight 17, using a missile supplied by Russia. Malay Mail Online and New York Daily News

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 7-Mar-15 World View -- Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan seek 'Sunni unity' versus Iran thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (7-Mar-2015) Permanent Link
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