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Canada vs Saudi Arabia
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georgia_tech_swagger Offline
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Post: #1
Canada vs Saudi Arabia





Quote:The first major global conflict of the 21st century broke out in the Middle East. It didn't involve Iran. ISIS wasn't a factor. Surprisingly, even Israel found itself on the sidelines.

The initial volley of shots in the battle for the post-US period came from Saudi Arabia. The power struggle was caused by Washington's withdrawal from the world.
This week has seen two incidents which suggest the Kingdom's conduct is less constrained by Western ways. First, Canada's ambassador had a fairly common critique following the detention of a women's rights activist. Instead of issuing their own statement, Riyadh simply cut off ties. Second, an airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen that killed dozens of children. Instead of apologizing, the Saudis defended the airstrike, calling it a legitimate military operation. The message seems to be: we no longer feel the need to conform to external expectations.



https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/09/opinions/...index.html
08-11-2018 06:02 PM
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58-56 Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
15 out of 19. Can't read this (sent by a SA official account) as anything other than threat of a repeat:

[Image: 5b6864ea64dce81c008b4ad8-750-434.jpg]
(This post was last modified: 08-11-2018 10:48 PM by 58-56.)
08-11-2018 10:47 PM
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BobcatEngineer Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia's reaction to Canada's tweet regarding human rights abuses:
  • Suspended all flights to and from Toronto
  • Expelled Canada's ambassador
  • Froze all new trade and investments with Canada
  • Ordered asset managers to sell off Canadian assets "no matter the cost"
  • Ordered thousands of Saudi students studying in Canada to suspend their education and to look for educational opportunities in different countries
  • Withdrawal of thousands of medical patients from Canadian hospitals
  • Blacklisted Canadian wheat and barley shipments

I'm proud Canada stood up for human rights in the KSA. I hope they don't back down to Mohammed bin Salman's strong arm approach.
08-13-2018 12:57 PM
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Machiavelli Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Canada, I’m your friend. They get me and I get them. I used to travel to Canada all the time, but since the new passport requirements came into effect I haven’t travelled there. Looks like the family might need a set of passports to support my sisters and brothers in the north.
08-14-2018 07:01 AM
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Owl 69/70/75 Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
I want somebody to explain something to me.

We have all these people complaining that we spend more on defense than the next ten countries, or however many it is, in the world. Now some of our military spending is waste, to be sure. It's the government, and governments don't spend money without waste. Right now there are some issues with military spending. We have way too much bloat and overhead, for example we have more people in the Pentagon today that it took to win WWII, and we should never fight a war that we don't intend to win. But at the same time we aren't spending enough on combat and combat support, so our troops are way overextended and under supported. Hence, for example, two Navy destroyers colliding with merchantmen in WestPac because crews were overly tired and equipment didn't work. We are unable with current rubber-meets-the-road forces to meet our existing commitments. And the biggest reason we spend so much is that, for probably 8 of those 10 countries, we ARE their defense as well as our own.

And we can't cut that back until those other countries try to do their share. We can't leave a void, or somebody we really don't like will fill it. But when Trump goes to Europe and tells them that they need to get with the program, the same folks that complain about military spending now complain the Trump is "destroying NATO." And when something like this happens, it's because the US is "withdrawing from the world."

Hint: You can't have it both ways. Either we stay involved and eat the cost, or we cut back and live with the consequences. So, friends on the left, which is it?

My approach would be:
1) Cut back on the bloat at the top. Get back to a leaner, meaner force. And convert a number of active duty slots to cheaper reserve slots.
2) Never fight a war that we don't intend to win. In the Middle East, either get it over or get out. At this point, that's probably get out.
3) Start transitioning some of our global responsibilities to our allies. I can see a collaboration with the British Commonwealth being useful in this regard. I would also make interoperability with allies a factor in future procurement decisions. I could foresee a "1000 ship navy" where we supplied 400 of the ships, the Commonwealth 200, NATO 200, and our Asian/Pacific allies 200. We probably have to help fund some of this, but in the long run we would save.
08-14-2018 07:33 AM
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Lord Stanley Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Quote:The power struggle was caused by Washington's withdrawal from the world.

Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

I swear to you the world will not like the rules and expectations they demand of the USA coming true. Case in point, Canada vs Saudi Arabia.
08-14-2018 04:14 PM
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BobcatEngineer Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
(08-14-2018 04:14 PM)Lord Stanley Wrote:  
Quote:The power struggle was caused by Washington's withdrawal from the world.

Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

I swear to you the world will not like the rules and expectations they demand of the USA coming true. Case in point, Canada vs Saudi Arabia.

This is what bugs me about the US non-involvement in this diplomatic spat between Canada and KSA:

Quote:“We are aware of Government of Saudi Arabia’s statement recalling the Saudi ambassador to Canada and expelling Canada’s ambassador,” a State Department official wrote in an email Monday afternoon. “Canada and Saudi Arabia are both close allies of the United States. I refer you to the Canadian and Saudi Ministries of Foreign Affairs for further information.”


I understand that the relationship between the US and Canada aren't exactly at a high point, but in no world should Canada and Saudi Arabia have equal footing when it comes to the hierarchy of allies. One country provided 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers that took down the WTC, meanwhile the other country helped land over 200 aircraft bound for the USA, and housed, closed and fed thousands of Americans until the US airspace opened back up.

Canada doesn't need the US to flex their military might, but a simple statement would be nice:

"The State Department agrees with the Canadian position on human rights abuses under the Saudi regime".

But that won't happen, because the US willingly will turn a blind eye to the atrocities committed by the Saudis in order to stick it to Iran.
08-15-2018 09:15 AM
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georgia_tech_swagger Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
The Canadians are playing hard ball on NAFTA negotiations. Which is hilarious because Canada only exists as a country because the United States has been preoccupied and we don't want the French. All it would take to quickly dissolve Canada is for the people of Alberta to get fed up with being fleeced to pay for everything (including direct transfer payments to Quebec to keep them in Canada, no joke) or for the United States to offer statehood to Alberta.
08-15-2018 01:01 PM
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58-56 Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
It's not about NAFTA or taxes or any other petty dispute. Friends disagree. But they fight for each other.

159 Canadian soldiers have been KIA in Afghanistan since 2001. Canadian SOF were involved from the very first day.

Canada spilled her blood alongside us. Saudi Arabia simply spilled our blood.

Out of a $700 billion DOD budget, surely there's enough to turn the Kingdom into a sheet of shiny glass.
08-15-2018 01:25 PM
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Owl 69/70/75 Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
OK, so let's get clarification.

Do you favor
1) Upping (and it would require more upping, even if we eliminated every dollar of waste) our military spending to support continuing to be the world's policeman, or
2) Living with the fact that things won't always go to suit?

Because make no mistake, those are the options. There really aren't others, although I have some ideas about how to finesse the issues a bit. But in the end, those are our choices.
08-15-2018 01:33 PM
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58-56 Offline
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RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
(08-15-2018 01:33 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  OK, so let's get clarification.

Do you favor
1) Upping (and it would require more upping, even if we eliminated every dollar of waste) our military spending to support continuing to be the world's policeman, or
2) Living with the fact that things won't always go to suit?

Because make no mistake, those are the options. There really aren't others, although I have some ideas about how to finesse the issues a bit. But in the end, those are our choices.

It's not the topic at hand, but as I've stated before, I'd cut it (and Fatherland Security) in half.

But that's not the issue here. We flattened an Arab nation that did NOT attack us on 9/11. And we continue to spend blood and treasure on the Saudi side of the Saudi-Iran dispute. The Iranians are amateurs at evil compared to the Saudis.

The Saudi export of Wahhabi lunacy via their madrassa programs, the brutality of their actions in Yemen, their funding of anti-American terrorism . . . these are all the acts of an enemy of the West. They threatened Canada with a 9/11-style attack - openly, through an official account.

Bush kissed them (remember Bandar Bush? and the special post-9/11 evac flights for Saudi royals?), Obama bowed to them, Trump made a pathetic pilgrimage to get Jared a bailout and engaged in some weird orb-stroking masturbation ritual.

Support Canada. **** Saudi Arabia. Shift the Iran sanctions to the KSA, all you need is a little white-out.
08-15-2018 01:54 PM
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georgia_tech_swagger Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
If I were POTUS I'd push for statehood for Alberta and Saskatchewan. Land either and Canada ceases to exist as a country. Then you let everybody else in. Quebec might wanna go their own way, but it would not be optional that the St. Lawrence River and Seaway would be a free to use international shipping lane. If Quebec doesn't want to play ball on that then blockade the River until they change their mind. Extend I-5 to Junea and Anchorage. Connect Canada 17 to the US interstate system everywhere else.

Don't mistake this for Saudi support though. The theocrats can go take a long walk off a short pier.
(This post was last modified: 08-15-2018 01:58 PM by georgia_tech_swagger.)
08-15-2018 01:57 PM
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Owl 69/70/75 Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
(08-15-2018 01:54 PM)58-56 Wrote:  It's not the topic at hand, but as I've stated before, I'd cut it (and Fatherland Security) in half.
But that's not the issue here.

It actually is precisely the issue here. And your proposal would basically bring the global economy to a halt.

Pay attention. WWI and WWII basically killed the old imperial mercantile system. In the void, we offered a new deal at Bretton Woods in 1944. To the countries that were basically destroyed in WWII, we would help them rebuild and give them essentially one-way access to our markets, and we would protect their trade routes with our military, so they didn't need to, as long as they accepted our bribe by falling in and talking orders from us in the Cold War. It was a great plan. Problem was, it worked, and nobody figured out what to do next. In 1992, Ross Perot said what had been pretty obvious to me since the Berlin wall fell, "In the post-Cold-War era, economic strength will be more important than military power." But we didn't change course to reflect that.

Now we are stuck with the remnants of policies that reached expiration date 30 years ago. We have the largest trade deficit in the world, in no small part due to the fact that we let other countries export to us on more favorable terms than they let us export to them. We spend more on defense than the next 10 or so countries combined, because for probably 8 of those 10, we ARE their defense. The tax system to support that defense and every other bit of government spending is set up to drive investment offshore. And we end up fighting war after war that we don't really intend to win because our role as world policeman keeps us tanned up in stupid tribal disputes where we try to make people like us but everybody ends up hating us. So yes, it is all relevant.

If we pull out and recreate the vacuum, we have to live with whoever fills it--Somali pirates, al-Qaeda, China, you name it.

We need our allies to start picking up more of their share of the defense burden. And we need to level the playing field for trade. And we need to quit trying to micromanage the affairs of the rest of the world.

A dispute between Saudi Arabia and Canada is for the Saudis and Canadians to decide. We need to let some things go, because we can't control everything anyway, and the ones we try to control almost always end up going badly.

As far as Saudi versus Iran, that debate has been going on since at least it was cocktail (yes, cocktail) discussion between US and foreign military and diplomatic people when I was in Saudi with the Navy in 1970-71. Whom do we want to win out--Israel, Shias, or Sunnis? There are arguments each way, and the fighting still goes on. Iran has imperial ambitions that the other two don't, and the Israelis and Saudis are Semitic while the Iranians aren't.
(This post was last modified: 08-15-2018 10:25 PM by Owl 69/70/75.)
08-15-2018 03:56 PM
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georgia_tech_swagger Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Basically, the US is going to return to dollar diplomacy because that's where the electorate is like it or not. It would be nice if there were an adult in the room who would reboot the Commonwealth of Nations into a new post-Bretton-Woods World Order where you have to have some skin the game to get the benefits. The UN is useless and defunct. NATO is useless and defunct. It would be nice to hasten their demise and fiscal drain by replacing them with something up the job and financially structured to be truly cooperative instead of merely diplomacy through welfare at the expense of US taxpayers.
08-15-2018 10:09 PM
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58-56 Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Yes, please pay attention.

Trade deficits have little to do with trade policy. When a nation runs a deficit of a trillion dollars so it can, say, heedlessly enact a massive tax cut for the rentier class without corresponding reductions in government (including defense) spending, that gap has to be covered. Those purchases of debt, such as Treasury notes, are counted toward the trade deficit. The United States runs a massive trade deficit because it exports debt and imports other nations' savings - the bank accounts of Japanese salarymen, the dollar reserves of the Chinese government and, yes, the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi royal family is an agent of chaos. They've been exporting their Wahhabi radical tenets since 1979, when Jimmy Carter sought their aid to de-stabilize the Soviet occupation government of Afghanistan and they responded by building madrassas across the Islamic world and sending volunteers including the favorite son of a Saudi construction magnate to fight the godless communists in Afghanistan. The foul harvest of that sowing continues to be reaped.

Whether we like it or not, we live in an inter-connected world in which the United States has assumed obligations to its allies. Canada has fulfilled its alliance obligations to the United States. Canadians fought in Afghanistan. The Canadian Brigade Group stood beside VII Corps for three decades (and one before that with the BAOR). When the United States invoked Article V in 2001, Canada answered that call.

Just a simple statement of support for Canada, that's all. Not a "fine people on both sides" formulation. Speak up for our ally, for our neighbor of shared liberal democratic values. The Canadians are right: Saudi Arabia has an abysmal record on human rights, particularly sex slavery. Sure, it's no Kuwait (where literacy was a capital crime into the mid-20th century) but the Saudi regime respects absolutely no modern values.

While Canada fought for us, Saudi Arabia did not. Despite having been declared "allies" by FDR in February 1945, the Saudis have never stood alongside U.S. soldiers (other than the two Gulf Wars, when we did their bidding vs. Saddam). The Saudis instead have fought against U.S. interests, sending troops to the West Bank in 1967 and bankrolling the rebuilding of the Egyptian and Syrian war machines for the 1973 war.

The Saudi regime will eventually fall, if for no other reason when the oil finally runs dry, all those Filipinos and Pakistanis doing the drudge work go home and several million Saudi youth used to those government payouts suddenly need jobs. Instead of exporting a few thousand jihadis, there will be a few million of them.

We do not have the luxury of withdrawing behind our ocean borders and ignoring the rest of the world. The planet has become very small in the last half-century. It is a world of friends and enemies (and Trump is actually correct to seek direct dialogue with the Iranian regime, though Allah alone can say what sort of carpet he'll end up buying).
08-15-2018 10:41 PM
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Owl 69/70/75 Offline
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Post: #16
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Here's my point. Those "obligations to our allies" cost money, specifically the defense budget. If we are going to cut defense, then Canada and Saudi Arabia cannot be our problem. If we are going to get involved in Canada versus Saudi Arabia, then we need to spend more on defense. Because right now our defense budget it not adequate to fund those "obligations to our allies."

Take your pick, but you can't have it both ways.
08-16-2018 06:03 AM
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Post: #17
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
(08-15-2018 01:57 PM)georgia_tech_swagger Wrote:  If I were POTUS I'd push for statehood for Alberta and Saskatchewan. Land either and Canada ceases to exist as a country. Then you let everybody else in. Quebec might wanna go their own way, but it would not be optional that the St. Lawrence River and Seaway would be a free to use international shipping lane. If Quebec doesn't want to play ball on that then blockade the River until they change their mind. Extend I-5 to Junea and Anchorage. Connect Canada 17 to the US interstate system everywhere else.

Don't mistake this for Saudi support though. The theocrats can go take a long walk off a short pier.

We don't want all the socialists in Ontario. BC isn't that populated, so we could handle another Oregon.
08-16-2018 06:29 PM
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Post: #18
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
The US invaded Canada twice in both the revolution and the war of 1812 and neither went well.

No effing way any Republican wants to add 4 million people and 7 electoral votes from Alberta or 1 million people and 4 electoral votes from Saskatchewan. Liberals as defined in the US would hold 53 Senate seats and the conservatives as defined in the US would hold 51.

That's five million plus people screaming no effing way are you SOBs taking my healthcare away or making firearms easier to purchase or pre-empting our provincial regulations regarding the environment.
08-19-2018 11:49 AM
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Kaplony Offline
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Post: #19
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
Canada has far from "fulfilled it's alliance".

They are not spending 2% of their GDP on defense as is the NATO standard, and will not meet the 2024 deadline to do so.

Canada has no incentive to meet said obligations because they believe that if push comes to shove that the US would be the one actually defending Canadian soil.

In turn they screw us over on trade hurting US business, farmers and manufacturers.
08-19-2018 03:23 PM
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Post: #20
RE: Canada vs Saudi Arabia
(08-19-2018 03:23 PM)Kaplony Wrote:  Canada has far from "fulfilled it's alliance".
They are not spending 2% of their GDP on defense as is the NATO standard, and will not meet the 2024 deadline to do so.
Canada has no incentive to meet said obligations because they believe that if push comes to shove that the US would be the one actually defending Canadian soil.
In turn they screw us over on trade hurting US business, farmers and manufacturers.

But this is the deal we made with everyone at Bretton Woods, near the end of WWII. We bribed them--we'll let you screw us over on trade, and we'll provide your defense so you can skate out, as long as in return you do what we tell you to do in the Cold War. Problem is, we never had a plan for what to do after we won the Cold War. So we've been following an out of date plan for going on 30 years.

We need a new paradigm. We need to level the playing field for trade, and we need our allies to pick up more of the defense load. But until they pick up the slack, we can't drop it. Trump recognizes this. I don't agree with his bull in the China shop approach, but he does actually understand what needs to be done. And either his predecessors did not understand, or their methods did not work.

I think we could close a lot of the trade gap with a consumption tax, without getting into tariff wars. That would give us money to balance the budget, wit enough left over to do Bismarck health care, change to a guaranteed basic income to replace the current bloated welfare bureaucracy, and reduce income tax rates down to--or below--world-class levels.
08-19-2018 04:05 PM
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