Jewish World Review April 5, 2004 / 14 Nissan, 5764

Joe Scarborough

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Consumer Reports

Our dear Saudi allies are putting the gun to America's head | Now how long will American leaders continue to protect the Saudi loyal family? After all, we started a war in 1991, more or less, to protect the Saudis' massive oil reserves. And not only did we get Saddam's troops off of Saudi Arabia's border, we forever defamed the butcher of Baghdad.

And to show their gratitude, the Saudi royals began funneling secret cash payments to Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda. And even after September 11, George Bush's doctrine that said you're either on the side of the terrorists or on the side of America was largely ignored by the Saudis who were still convinced they could have it both ways in Washington and they are.

Now with America's economic recovery endangered by rising gas prices, the Saudis are actually using their leverage to screw their old friends once again. This week they joined OPEC in conspiring to cut oil production even more, which will drive American gas prices in your neighborhood even higher. Then the Saudis' prince had the nerve to assure the Bush administration we could count on our old friends in Saudi Arabia to keep oil prices steady. But as George Bush should know by now the Saudis' word means nothing.

We don't need Saudi billionaires giving bland assurances outside the White House. We need them speaking up at OPEC meetings, but don't expect that to happen anytime soon, because, as with terrorism, the Saudi royals continue to believe that their oil and their money can buy them the royal privilege to always have it both ways in Washington. It's a Capitol Hill disgrace and it's tonight's "Real Deal"

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