JERUSALEM – It’s not only Saudi Arabia. Now major U.S. allies Turkey and Qatar are discussing developing closer relations with Russia at the expense of America, according to informed Middle Eastern security officials.
In a shocking development, the security officials further said Qatar and Turkey are leading secret talks to study the possibility of renewing relations with foes Syria and Iran in response to President Obama opening dialogue with Tehran over its nuclear program.
Qatar and Turkey, along with Saudi Arabia, were deeply involved in supporting the insurgency targeting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Those countries are said to be some of the biggest opponents of Iran’s alleged nuclear-weapons aspirations.
According to the security officials speaking to WND, Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are disappointed with Obama’s outreach to Iran and what they view as a U.S. failure to act militarily in Syria.
“They view America has losing major credibility,” said one official.
The foreign ministers of Qatar and Turkey, the officials say, have been quietly discussing a change in attitude toward Syria and Iran along with closer strategic relations with Russia that could include weapons and oil deals.
Yesterday, the Jerusalem Post reported Saudi Arabia’s intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, said his country will make a “major shift” away from its relationship with the U.S. in protest of Obama’s dialogue with Iran and inaction in Syria.
Earlier this month,WND was first to report that Saudi Arabia and other Sunni Arab countries, responding to Obama’s diplomatic outreach to Iran, are exploring closer relationships with China and Russia at the expense of the U.S.
According to a senior Jordanian diplomat speaking to WND at the time, the Kingdom of Jordan also participated in a meeting with high-level Saudi officials to discuss the ramifications of Obama’s phone call with Iranian President Hassan Rohani.
The Arab countries expressed deep concern about talk of the U.S. easing ties with foe Iran.
In the meeting, the leaders discussed having the Saudis and other Sunni Arab nations offer Russia and China larger roles in diplomacy and trade, including better oil deals.
Now the Jerusalem Post has quoted a source close to Saudi policy saying that Sultan told European diplomats about the coming shift in Riyadh’s longstanding U.S. ties, including possible changes to oil deals and arms sales.
“The shift away from the U.S. is a major one,” the source was quoted as saying. “Saudi doesn’t want to find itself any longer in a situation where it is dependent.
“Prince Bandar told diplomats that he plans to limit interaction with the U.S.,” the source continued. “This happens after the U.S. failed to take any effective action on Syria and Palestine.”
The source said relations with the U.S. “have been deteriorating for a while, as Saudi feels that the U.S. is growing closer with Iran and the U.S. also failed to support Saudi during the Bahrain uprising.”
The source said the changes extend to arms purchases and oil sales.
“All options are on the table now, and for sure there will be some impact,” the Saudi source said.