Saudi Arabia: Nervously Watching Pakistan

In a commentary for the Brookings Institution, former CIA officer and senior advisor to three U.S. presidents on Middle East issues Bruce Riedel says that Saudi Arabia is anxiously watching the situation in Pakistan because the two countries have a deep military relationship and an “unacknowledged nuclear partnership.”

“No country in the world, except maybe India, is more concerned with the outcome of the political crisis that is gripping Pakistan than Saudi Arabia. The Saudi kingdom has a longstanding and intimate relationship with Pakistan. They faced common enemies in the past successfully and face a common enemy today in al Qaeda. They have had a deep strategic military relationship for decades and today have an unacknowledged nuclear partnership to provide the kingdom with a nuclear deterrent on short notice if ever needed. Understanding the Saudi-Pakistani relationship is important to understanding the future of both countries, the nuclear balance in both the Near East and South Asia, and the crisis in Pakistan today.”

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