MBS uses affinity with China to sustain steady US support
Bernie Sanders withdrew the resolution he sponsored to the Senate demanding an end to US support to Saudi's war in Yemen.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, who sponsored the Yemen War Powers Resolution (YWPR), which effectively ends the US support to the Saudi-led genocidal war in Yemen, withdrew it from a scheduled Senate vote when President Joe Biden and his administration pledged to veto it.
Over the years, the prospect of ending US support for the war in the war in Yemen has garnered the support of both Democrats and Republicans in Congress. However, all attempts to pass a resolution were stifled by Trump's vetoes.
In his presidential campaign, Biden contrasted himself to Trump's committed support for Saudi Arabia in an effort to advertise himself as having a moral high grounds. He had pledged to stop supporting Saudi Arabia's war of aggression and take the Yemeni Resistance movement Ansar Allah off the terrorist designation list. He had even gone as far as pledging to make Saudi Arabia a pariah state.
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Three years after his election, Biden has manifestly failed in realizing the hardline policy against Saudi Arabia that he had used to advertise his presidential campaign. The Biden administration used the UN truce to justify lobbying against the YWPR. The administration argued that the truce was able to suppress violence and deter Saudi airstrikes—even after the truce ended back in October.
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It's notable that Saudi Arabia's oil didn't only blind Biden to the genocide of Yemenis but also to the assassination of Khashoggi, a US national and journalist at the Washington Post. The Biden administration recommended granting Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman (MBS) immunity in a lawsuit filed against him by the fiancée of Jamal Khashoggi.
MBS Oscillating Between Major Powers
Recently, MBS hosted Chinese President Xi Jinping, signing several investment deals between the two countries. This was the most recent effort to strengthen Sino-Saudi bilateralism, which has alarmed Washington to what it perceives to be deteriorating US-Saudi relations.
The Saudi-American alliance has long been a cause of frustration for the White House. It incapacitated Washington with the contradiction of preserving its access to large oil reserves in the Middle East and promoting an international image as a beacon of democracy.
Attempts to push states away from their natural interests rarely succeed. it's only natural that Saudi Arabia which is the world's largest oil exporter grows in affinity to China which is the world's largest importer of oil. However, China's longstanding ties with Iran will further complicate its emerging interest in Saudi Arabia.