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Saudi Arabia proved it's still the key player in the Gulf

Saudi Arabia proved it's still the key player in the Gulf
Biden's Trip to Saudi Arabia Viewed as a Win for the Saudis | GZERO World

Joe Biden's pledges to prevent Iran from getting the bomb and to defend Saudi Arabia from an attack were "music to Saudi Arabia's ears," Bernard Haykel, a professor at Princeton University and confidante of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman tells Ian Bremmer on GZERO World. Biden's controversial trip was largely viewed as a big win for the Saudis, while the US didn't get much out of the discussions because Biden's team didn't do their homework, says Haykel.

The Saudis "were able to show that they have tremendous convening power" by bringing in all the Gulf leaders, thus demonstrating that Riyadh is the most important player there — and the partner you need for political and energy stability.

Haykel discusses how MBS consolidated power, the kingdom's strategic value to the US in the Middle East, MBS's strategy to modernize his country, and the prospects for future warmer ties with Israel. After the international furor over murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Haykel says, "I don't think that they will ever do anything like that again."


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