The strategic relationship between the House of Saud and the US Administration is worsening by the day, as shown by repeated unexpected changes in president Biden’s approach to the Kingdom and its rulers. The US military debacle in Afghanistan, the pictures of which have been widely published, has caused severe stress in the minds of Arab leaders. While Washington repeatedly states that the Afghanistan move is not linked to broader US military and economic involvement in the Middle East (and North Africa), the chaos at Kabul airport has shocked the regimes of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, and even Qatar. Washington’s unilateral actions in Afghanistan appear to have severely damaged the fundamentals of US influence in the Persian Gulf. If Afghanistan turns out to be a one-off event, there will be limited negative repercussions for Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and even Egypt, but some Washington insiders believe it is […]