Saudi Arabia

Must Read

Carnegie: What to Make of Saudi Hand-Wringing

Author: Frederic Wehrey

This absence of clear unanimity in the Gulf, combined with the momentum of U.S.-Iranian talks, leave Riyadh few options. Moving forward, it is likely to follow in the broad wake of U.S. policy, but with a greater preference for hedging. It may pursue multiple, overlapping policy initiatives as a form of insurance, some of which may clash with U.S. strategies and goals.

See more in Saudi Arabia; Nonproliferation, Arms Control, and Disarmament

Ask CFR Experts

What does the generational shift of leadership in Saudi Arabia mean for the United States?

Asked by Matthew Rodrigues, from The George Washington University

Since the 1953 death of Saudi Arabia's eponymous founder, King Abdul-Aziz bin Saud, the country has been ruled by his sons. There will eventually be a shift in power to the next generation, but despite—or perhaps because of—the turmoil spreading across the region, that shift does not appear imminent.

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See more in Saudi Arabia; Elections

Op-Ed

Bandar Is Back

Author: Elliott Abrams
Weekly Standard

Elliott Abrams says the return of Bandar bin Sultan as head of Saudi Arabia's intelligence service may "bring Saudi views and interests back to the center of Arab decision making as well as the inner circles in many other world capitals."

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Video

Saudi Arabia in the New Middle East

Speakers: F. Gregory Gause III and Toby C. Jones
Presider: Paul B. Stares

Leading regional experts Gregory Gause, III and Toby C. Jones assess the stability of Saudi Arabia, its role in the reshaped region, and the future of U.S.-Saudi relations.

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News Release

Saudi Arabia Remains Indispensable U.S. Ally, Argues New CFR Book

As the United States confronts a volatile Middle East, Saudi Arabia is "a central player—sometimes in accord with U.S. policy, sometimes not—in Arab-Israeli peace negotiations, in the quest for stability in Iraq, in Persian Gulf regional security issues focusing on Iran, and in the global struggle to promote a peaceful vision of Islam over jihadist violence," writes Thomas Lippman in a new book, Saudi Arabia on the Edge: The Uncertain Future of an American Ally.

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News Release

U.S.-Saudi Relationship Increasingly Strained, says CFR Report

The U.S.-Saudi relationship has become strained by increasing mistrust and misunderstanding—most recently over Egypt and Bahrain—and gone are the old foundations of the informal alliance: the Cold War and U.S. operation of Riyadh's oil fields. This is the judgment of F. Gregory Gause III of the University of Vermont, in Saudi Arabia in the New Middle East. The two countries can no longer expect to act in close concert, and the United States should recast the relationship as transactional, one based on cooperation when interests dictate, he argues.

See more in Saudi Arabia; Politics and Strategy; United States