The diplomatic conflict between Qatar and a number of other Arab states over the support for terrorist groups shows the hypocrisy of Riyadh, which has been repeatedly spotted funding extremists, analysts told Sputnik.
Saudi accusations against the Persian Gulf Arab monarchy of Qatar for supporting Islamist terror groups are highly hypocritical and express fake outrage because Riyadh does the same thing on a greater scale.
“As for Saudi complaints about Qatar funding terrorism, it’s hard to take them seriously since Saudi Arabia’s activities in this respect are all too well known,” foreign affairs analyst and political commentator Dan Lazare said.
The US authorities were aware of the support granted by Qatar and Saudi Arabia to the terrorists operating in the Mideast countries, the leaked e-mail of former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton published by WikiLeaks showed.
In 2009, then-Secretary of State Clinton declared in a diplomatic cable that “donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.”
In September 2014, Clinton wrote in an email that “Qatar and Saudi Arabia… are providing clandestine financial and logistical support to ISIL [Daesh] and other radical Sunni groups in the region,” he noted.
“Are we really supposed to believe that the Saudis are now upset because Qatar is funding them as well,” Lazare asked?
Lazare compared the Saudi accusations against Qatar for funding Islamist terror groups to a falling out among thieves.
“Yes, there seems to be a difference of opinion about the Muslim Brotherhood, with Saudi Arabia opposed and Qatar in favor. But the Saudis are inconsistent since they back the Muslim Brotherhood affiliate in Yemen — al-Islah,” he said.
The real reason for the rupture between Saudi Arabia and Qatar was the conflicting national policies toward Iran, Lazare explained.
“Qatar is clearly uneasy about the aggressive new Saudi-US policy that Trump announced in last month’s visit to Riyadh,” he stated.
However, both Saudi Arabia and Qatar were wary about being dragged into a major conflict or war in which each country could face a much larger and long-feared adversary, Lazare pointed out.
“Clearly, Qatar is nervous about the new hard-line policy emanating out of Washington and Riyadh and is reluctant to be dragged into a military confrontation with the giant [Iran] across the Gulf,” he said.
Instead of uniting the Gulf Cooperation Council, the Saudi-US effort to step up the pressure was causing it to crack wide open, Lazare concluded.
Author and political activist David Swanson said that the United States, Saudi Arabia and Qatar all claimed to be fighting extreme Islamist terror but all three of them continues d to support it.
“The nations you name [Saudi Arabia and Qatar] and the nation I am in (the United States) back terrorists and meddle in other countries’ affairs routinely. The layers of hypocrisy here are deep,” he observed.