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Obama’s Gulf Meeting Protocol: Shake Hands, Smile, Ignore Repression, Repeat


Obama’s Gulf Meeting Protocol: Shake Hands, Smile, Ignore Repression, Repeat

Medea Benjamin, Nalini Ramachandran

Washington DC is presently the converging point for some of the world’s most oppressive regimes. On May 13th and 14th, President Obama is hosting a billionaire conglomerate known as the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which consists of the Middle Eastern countries of Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE and Oman. The cozy US-GCC relationship exemplifies the twisted nature of US foreign policy, especially in regards to one particular monarchy: Saudi Arabia.


“Washington DC is presently the converging point for some of the world’s most oppressive regimes.”

And if that does not scare the hell out of you nothing will! Because Washington DC is also one of the worlds most oppressive regimes. A Plutocratic, military dictatorship posing as a democracy, when nothing could be further from the truth! And folks, mark my words: What is Amerikan foreign policy of death, terrorism and supporting some of the most despicable quisling and fascist regimes in the world to protect the Oligarchy’s vested interests; will happen domestically in the US, once these same vested interests are sufficiently threatened here.

Example: The FBI has been caught spying on the XL pipeline activists and labeling them " environmental extremists". Any one that is a perceived threat to the vested interests of the 1% will be demonized as a terrorist or extremist, when the real extremists and terrorists are the ones protecting their vested interests here.


Oh come on, what’s a little repression when there’s money at stake?

There are plenty of countries the U.S. can point at that have human rights violations, or what can be made to look like violations, that aren’t advancing U.S. interests.

Let’s talk about them - you know, like U.S. media does.


This is an excellent article about the US & Saudi roles in the Gulf (e.g. Yemeni) crisis. Obama should pay attention. The Saudis won’t, and the Israelis won’t either.


What, exactly, can Obama do? Saudi Arabia has oil and tremendous wealth, and the US therefore needs to be on reasonably good terms with Saudi Arabia. Saudis believe repression (though they might choose another word) gives them clarity of direction, unity and greater strength. Scold them for human rights abuses? The US lost all credibility on that issue.Some nations find the US to be particularly barbaric, with its endless thirst for war, its massive prison system, and its treatment of its own poor – all fundamental human rights violations.


Our Constitutional rights are already being seriously undermined by anti-terrorism legislation in the form of the NDAA and Homeland Security laws. The secret ALEC meetings between lawmakers and corporate reps are giving de facto legislative power to the big corporate interests . The only legal recourse left to the people to stop the increasing corruption of our democratic form of government and the rapid dismantling of our Constitution is to invoke Article V and call for a Constitutional Convention. It would be a very perilous undertaking because it gives the state legislatures collectively the power to make any changes they like in the form of Constitutional amendments,even to sack the Constitution itself if they so choose and replace it with an entirely new one. For this reason Article V has never in our history been invoked…things have never gotten so
desperate until now.


Agree, things are now very desperate.


There’s nothing President Obama can say about human rights violations in foreign countries because those countries are more aware than the average American of the degree to which the US disregards/violates the basic human rights of our own people. Our prisons and our treatment of the very poor are the most glaring examples noted by the international community. We repress, and do indeed brutalize, our very poor, and the international community is aware of this.