Will Saudi Arabia Keep Gasoline prices down?

Dr. Joseph Frager,

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Dr. Joseph Frager
The writer is a leading American pro-Israel activist who sponsors and coordinates many Zionist events. He is clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine (Gastroenterology & Liver Diseases) at the Einstein School of Medicine as well as a practicing physician.

With the passing of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, the question arises whether his successor, King Salman and the new emir Prince Mohammed bin Nayef will continue his policies including an attempt to bankrupt Iran via a reduced price of oil.

America has been given an economic boost and Iran and Russia a significant economic blow. Saudi Arabia's manipulation of oil prices is nothing new. I remember well the long lines at service stations in the early 70's when Saudi Arabia decided to drive up oil prices.

Given President Obama's reluctance to continue and increase sanctions on Iran while the Iranians race to build the Bomb, the Saudi's under King Abdullah decided to flex its own muscles by creating its very own form of sanctions on Iran via a drop in oil prices. I only wish it was done years ago. It is a stroke of genius. The drop in oil prices is clearly having an effect on Iran.

Assuming King Abdullah's successors see the situation the same way, low gasoline prices will last as long as Iran can be hampered in their quest towards a Nuclear Bomb capability. A Nuclear Iran puts Saudi Arabia as well as the rest of the world on the hot seat. Saudi Arabia sees Iran as its most dangerous threat and rightfully so. Saudi Arabia is hoping that the Iranians will abandon their Nuclear Program altogether. This should have been the goal of the United States from the get go as well.

Sanctions that might have brought this about needed to be applied 12 years ago to make this happen .Heavier Sanctions from the United States plus the reduced price of oil could cripple the Iranian Economy to possibly make this happen even at this late hour. Unfortunately, the President does not want to do this. He just wants some flimsy agreement that will do little to prevent the formation of a Nuclear Bomb. He has missed many opportunities to bring Iran to its knees. He did little to help the Iranian Moderates in their Revolution several years ago. Regime Change in Iran could very well have been brought about by the proper tweaking of Sanctions.

Obama has if anything boosted the present regime. Iran is ripe for another Revolution. It sure beats getting bombed to smithereens. In essence the upcoming election in Israel is a Referendum on whether to Bomb Iran or not. Prime Minister Netanyahu is speaking to Congress on Iran to put this back in focus. Although he is facing a stiff challenge from Livni/Herzog/Lapid, I fully expect him to be the only one able to form a Coalition. If indeed he forms a Right wing Coalition as expected, his first action will be to take care of Iran once and for all. He would love if Obama would help him out but he is prepared to go it alone if necessary.

With a Presidential Race heating up in the U.S. everyone will rally around Netanyahu and Obama will be in a tough position. The Democrats will abandon him as they did prior to the Nov. 4th 2014 Republican Tsunami. There may well be talk in America of taking out Iran's Nuclear Reactors as the Presidential Race of 2016 begins. Obama would love to make a very bad agreement with Iran to take Iran out of the calculus. As his previous foreign policy actions have backfired, it is likely it will remain an active topic in the political discourse. It will just be much more complicated than it ever had to be.The new Saudi Leader will follow Abdullah's line for now.

Saudi Arabia faces its own homegrown terrorists. Osama Bin Laden contemplated taking over the Kingship for himself. Al Queda was responsible for the Khobar Towers Bombing in which 23 American Air Force Servicemen were murdered in Saudi Arabia in the 90's. Anytime there is a succession there is instability. The Middle east is undergoing seismic shifts on an almost daily basis. Just look at Yemen and Syria. Instability always brings about unpredictable events. Israel remains the only Stable country in the Middle East and Obama should never take it for granted. The Saudis have sort of been a counter-balance to Obama who has caved in to Iran at almost every turn.

Hopefully King Salman, will continue to try to cripple Iran's economy. Hopefully, the Saudis who offered to buy Facebook under Abdullah to prevent a social media cataclysm, the likes of which occurred in Egypt with the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, will continue to apply pressure on the Iranians.  Gasoline prices will remain low as long as it seems like it is having an impact on Iran.