In Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince Mohammed Ben Salman deadlocked

The raid on the biggest refinery in the kingdom and an oil field, awarded by Riyadh to Tehran, is a humiliation for "MBS", singer of Saudi nationalism.

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This is an animated short film, to the glory of the Saudi army, which caused a sensation in the kingdom, when it appeared on the Internet in December 2017. But today, in the context of bombings that have hit the country's oil industry, the Riyadh authorities would surely prefer that it never existed.

The film, viewed 1.5 million times on YouTube, depicts, in the manner of a video game of war, the response of the Saudi army to an attack on Iran. The Revolutionary Guards' stars are routed, missiles are intercepted without firing a shot and, following a lightning amphibious landing, the soldiers of His Majesty King Salman seize Tehran and its rulers – all under the cheers of the Iranian people.

At the time, the Riyadh press had praised the "Realism" This propaganda video opened with a particularly martial declaration of Mohammed Ben Salman, the Saudi Crown Prince, son of the ruler, nicknamed "MBS". "We will not wait for the war to reach Saudi Arabia, we will make sure that the battle takes place in Iran itself," he asserted.

Terrible humiliation

Bravache, impulsive, chauvinistic, the tone of the animated film was then revealing the anti-Iranian hardening of Saudi diplomacy, its offensive stiffening. This turn, embodied by the young Crown Prince, architect of the war in Yemen, was justified, in the eyes of the crown, by the growing interference of the Islamic Republic in Arab affairs.

Twenty-one months later, reality has caught up with fiction, but not in the sense imagined by the script writers. The Saudi air defense system was unable to counter the attack on Saturday, September 14, on the largest refinery in the kingdom, in Abqaïq, in the east of the country, and on the adjacent Khourais oil field. . A terrible humiliation for MBS, singer of Saudi nationalism.

"This is a very hard blow to the credibility of Arabia vis-à-vis Westerners," says a foreign businessman who has his entries in Riyadh. Claimed by the Houthi rebels in Yemen, but awarded by the US State Department to Iran, the operation, unprecedented audacity, has cut Saudi Arabia half of its oil production capacity. A real casus belli.


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