The Arab and Islamic worlds are known for their ruthlessness in solving problems, both in the family and between rulers and countries.
“Allah’s decree is as a sword,” the Muslims declared, proceeding to use their swords to hack, rape and pillage on their way to conquering Europe starting in the seventh century. Because everyone is busy with the slaughter of opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi, it’s hard not to recall U.S. President Donald Trump at the sword dance last year during his visit to Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi flag, which displays a sword, is a relic of that same Islamist aspiration. Today, what is left is a country replete with dollars, oil, internal intrigue and dwindling involvement in lethal Wahabi Islamist terrorism—the fingerprints of which were on the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
Much Saudi oil has flowed to the West, and many dollars have made their way into the pockets of the Saudis, the descendants of Bedouin who transformed from donkey and camel jockeys—who robbed each other in the Arabian Desert before they discovered the black gold—to fat kings and princes, corrupt and dependent, who hold grandiose titles like Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.
The Arab world is not worried over the murders, which are a common sight there. But many are upset at the stupidity and unprofessionalism of the Saudis. No one doubts that the killing was carried out at the order of the prince. After all, in Saudi Arabia, where billionaires from the royal family are arrested and robbed, and even the prime minister of Lebanon is arrested at the order of the little prince MBS, no one does anything of his own volition.
There is an Arab saying that “the apology is sometimes worse than the crime.” The young Mohammad, appointed heir to the throne by his father Salman, has all of a sudden changed from the world’s hope for progress, investment, technology and social reform in the Saudi kingdom to a mockery. His critics claim that if the Mossad had carried out the hit, it would have been perfect. They point out the selection of the scene of the crime (the embassy in Turkey), the 15 killers and their amateurish conduct, the body double and his costume, the body being hacked up and removed to the home of the Saudi consul, and the bizarre explanations that surrounded the affairs.
Now the crown prince is being referred to on social media as Abu Mansour, a play on words that refers to sawing Muslims apart rather than spreading Islam. The people making fun of the prince joke that the Kuwaiti foreign minister ate the dismembered body.
As the necrophiliac party rages on, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is acting like a stripper, slowly revealing one severed limb after another. The actor and author (and Muslim Brotherhood acolyte who himself has committed mass murder) has released footage recorded by his spies in the Saudi embassy, claiming that it was taken using Khashoggi’s “wonder watch.”
The miniature Turkish sultan, who is hated by Egypt, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority, some of the Gulf states and Israel, ran to the corpse like a cannibal, ignoring the wayward prince and talking directly to his senile father in the hope of bringing down the Mecca dynasty, which poses a threat to his plans to become the new Sunni sultan in the Middle East.
The Russians, who have their own interests, are lurking in wait for Trump. They are not the naive, self-righteous Barack Obama, and they do not try to turn slaughterers into “moral philosophers.” Under Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Saudis will be given both weapons and security guarantees on Iran. And the Europeans? They will always support America’s opponents, even if Iranian missiles rain down on their heads, in which case they will beg to be rescued (see: World War II).
The bloody show around Khashoggi’s limbs is a deathly domino setup. Trump’s self-righteous rivals at home are willing to scupper even the growing Saudi-led Sunni Gulf bloc against Iran, and the United States’s flourishing military economy and industries if it means that Trump will fall.
Does that sound like the Israeli left? Since Obama left office, the age of innocence has been over. These are the Arabs, and that’s what we have to deal with. Someone will certainly throw MBS a rope. Someone will be blamed for the failure and the dance of swords will go on. We must not stop the music now.
Dr. Reuven Berko was the adviser on Arab affairs to the Jerusalem district police and a writer for Israel Hayom.