New phase of Saudi’s kingdom disputes: Entrance of clans

Alwaght- In the recent days there have been news published about a meeting held between the Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef and number of the clans and prominent figures in the Saudi kingdom. This is not a new report as already such meetings have been observed to be organized by Al Saud ruling family.

The leaked reports of the gathering suggest that the Saudi crown prince has tried to depict the meeting as part of his plan to fill his free time, though the fact is that such arrangements are not the Saudi princes’ habit. Thereby, the questions have begun to appear, inquiring about the real motive behind arranging such conferences, especially that bin Nayef is the major rival of Mohammad bin Salman, the deputy crown prince and the son of the Saudi king, for ascending to the throne.

Al Saud family’s struggles over power

The Saudi ruling regime’s performance has proved that there are deep struggles in the Saudi royal family. Meanwhile, the confirmed reports note that King Salman is considering abdicating the throne in favor of his son Mohammad. Such news could trigger escalation of strives between the two Mohammads, namely bin Nayef and bin Salman. This infighting is coming while Riyadh is suffering from a considerable number of internal and external problems and challenges.

To pave the way for his son’s ascension to power, King Salman would not spare any efforts, and he would present his son as the only eligible man and the sole option for settling the problems the kingdom is dealing with.

Commenting on the King Salman’s attempts to raise his son to power, the renowned and distinguished American journalist Thomas L. Friedman, in a report published by the New York Times, has maintained that the king would seek to portrait his son Mohammad as the only man capable of solving the economic, political and military problems for Saudi Arabia.

To be objective and balanced in his report, Friedman, in a part of his report around the current conditions of the kingdom, has suggested that over 1000 Saudi nationals are now members of the takfiri and terror groups, as he added that a wave of disappointment has enveloped the country.

Why King Salman has not Abdicated so Far

To answer the question, we need to get a little back, and specifically, to the time when King Salman was pledged allegiance and when Muhammad bin Nayef was appointed as the crown prince, an issue which has led at that time to emergence of deep divides inside the house of Saud, and was not the American intervention, it was not clear where these disputes could lead Saudi Arabia.

Following King Salman’s rise to power, there was an attempt for fair power sharing in the kingdom. To this end, the post of ministry of interior was given to Muhammad bin Nayef, who from time to time flexes his muscles to the king and the deputy crown prince. The defense ministry post was given to Mohammad bin Salman, whose inexperience has engaged Saudi Arabia in the quagmire of war with Yemen and he sees no hope in sight for moving out of it.

After a year of Salman’s ruling, changes have taken place in Saudi Arabia so that top government posts are held by those who have proven their allegiance to the Sudairi clan, to whom the current king and his son are linked. This means, Salman has been successful in convincing the Americans to show a green light for his son to be his successor. The American agreement to the demand proved that the significant point for Washington is ascension of a king who would respond to the American demands without questions.

Using Internal situation to Press Mohammad bin Salman

In the meantime, the last remaining hurdle is the Saudi internal conditions, which are strange to bin Salman, and this young prince knows not much about them, and which are exploited by Muhammad bin Nayef as an opportunity to win the Saudi clans’ approval. He holds tight relations with them and prepares them for possible confrontation with Mohammad bin Salman.

And despite the fact that the clans and Saudi figures are not taken in to account by Al Saud when it comes to decision making, bin Nayef’s tendency to them indicates that he would resort to any trick to take on the king’s son. So, a dangerous and tough conflict should be expected inside the Al Saud family.

Regardless of which one of the princes would rise to power in Saudi Arabia, the upcoming Saudi king would inherit huge military, political, economic and social crises which could wipe away the Saudi throne.

By AlWaght

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