Salman Al-Dossary
Salman Al-Dossary is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.

Mohammed bin Salman’s Decisive Policy

One thing has always been clear since the founding of Saudi Arabia: The Kingdom always wins.

No other country has encountered such challenges on various levels and adeptly come out on top at every turn.

Its latest victory was claimed at the Jeddah summits where it achieved in two days what other countries dream of achieving in years. The situation after the summits will not be the same as that before them.

I can describe what happened in Jeddah days earlier as a new chapter in Saudi-American and Gulf-American relations and the United States’ ties with the region.

Riyadh made it clear that relations must be based on clarity and that respecting the values of the concerned parties (to achieve the interests of the trusted alliance) are the foundations of partnership. Any decision must enjoy the approval of all parties. Old deep-rooted American policy ideas, such as the lies of “protection in exchange for oil” and the American ability to lead the region, must be abandoned.

“It has become evident that whoever wants to pursue a global agenda must speak to Saudi Arabia” as the leader of the region, said the Saudi foreign minister. I use this core statement to explain the modern Saudi view, whose decisive foreign policy is being led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Joe Biden and his team were tersely informed: “There can be no dictates. Our interests and values come first.”

American propaganda and its remaining supporters in the region attempted to raise the ceiling of the summit outcomes prematurely by highlighting the US position and excluding the other parties, so as to achieve the minimum amount of demands.

The response, however, came lightning quick in the outcomes that wounded Biden before he even returned home. He then went about scrambling to make up for his missteps by issuing conflicting statements in search of false victories to save face and votes.

Saudi Arabia made it clear that there won’t be an increase in oil production and that it is working on reaching 13 barrels per day, in line with a previous plan and even before Biden decided to fly to Jeddah.

The Saudi position, which is committed to the OPEC+ deal, came as a shock to the American president. He had lost unilateral gains in the main agenda of his visit, especially after he realized the extent of the anger against him and his shambolic policy in the region and failure to find a solution that lowers oil prices or helps treat the ailing American economy.

Another issue Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman wanted to set straight against American meddling was that each nation has its own set of values. Washington was informed that American values may be suitable and shiny from the American perspective, but they do not necessarily align with Saudi values or those of any other nation and that attempting to export or impose them on others will backfire on Washington first before anyone else.

Saudi Arabia has its own particularities. This is not a metaphorical term, but a reality that everyone must understand. Rather, each country has its own particularities and they have the right to choose the values that fit them, ensuring that they do not harm others beyond their borders.

Even the American view of normalization will not and cannot succeed without Saudi Arabia and the Arab peace initiative. Moreover, the idea of an Arab NATO will not necessarily take shape in the way envisioned by American media. Rather, it is a purely Saudi project, as stressed by the foreign minister at the conclusion of the Jeddah Security and Development Summit.

His assertion tosses out the American narrative that it was trying to promote an alliance between regional countries. It also stresses that Arab, Russian and Chines options are available, while keeping the American alliance based on the principles of joint interests and transparency.

Those following the sharp rhetoric of American officials in particular and westerners in general against Saudi Arabia, its leadership, interests and policies and the outcomes of the Jeddah summits and other files, are aware of Riyadh’s ability to contain the situation through patience and work on each file with political skill and independence, which will always lead it to victory.

Any follower can notice the repeated political and media attacks that attempt to undermine the major decisive political role played by Crown Prince Mohammed and tarnish the Kingdom’s image and everything related to its promising plan and projects. The campaigns obviously become more extreme with each success. And yet, Saudi Arabia always comes out on top, that is the most important.