King Abdullah and that difficult Libyan situation

Sultan Alsa’ad Alqahtani

The revolutions of the Arab Spring were one of the most difficult moments in the region, which put most of the rulers of their countries under test, and only a few succeeded. The late king of Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz, was one of those leaders who managed to protect their countries despite the strong storms.


The Arab spring revolutions did not leave any Arab state without a threat. Revolutions saw the kingdom as the real prize, but King Abdullah was very strong while he was facing the events and continuous tests in the region, including certainly the Libyan revolution.


The Saudi political decision was reserved about military intervention in Libya despite the strong disagreement between the two countries. Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi is the one who organized and financed the assassination plot of King Abdullah. Such an action would have made Saudi Arabia logically the first country eager to avenge the Libyan leader and his regime.


What happened, however, was the opposite. Saudi Arabia did not want to interfere in Libya, as what was happening is a special Libyan internal affair, and the Libyans alone had to decide that. The situation of the Libyan revolution was cloudy, and no one knew what to do. Enthusiasm has stricken many in the region, and the desire to change anything has dissipated, without preparing an alternative plan, and preparing the ground for change. This was the dilemma of the Arab spring revolutions. 


Before that, Gaddafi had sent thanks to Saudi Arabia for its positions, which were recordings of the Two Hamads, in which they were inciting the revolution against Saudi Arabia, dividing it, and getting their share.

The Kingdom's position under King Abdullah was not to participate with NATO in striking an Arab and Islamic state, maintaining its main political principle which is: non-interference in the affairs of others. Many were surprised to see the Qatari enthusiasm to intervene in a country that was tens of thousands of kilometers away. 


Later, many people will see in the way of Gaddafi’s killing by pro-Qatar groups, a similar process of tampering with the crime scene to hide the evidence. Qatar of Hamad and France of Sarkozy were afraid that Muammar would speak and reveal their secrets, and then it would get out of control.


During a special dinner, sponsored and organized by the Moroccan King Mohammed VI, a dialogue between a group of senior officials in the countries of the region about the crisis in Libya. The attendees were, in addition to the Moroccan King, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Mehdi Ben Jomaa, Prime Minister of Tunisia at the time, Sheikha Moza, and a senior Saudi figure.


During the dinner, Sheikha Moza told the attendees that Qatar and the UAE had done the required role to rid the Libyan people of the tyrant. However, a senior Saudi adviser and a member of the royal family, had another view, indicating his government's position not to interfere in the affairs of other countries and not to expose the entity of the Libyan state to disintegration.


Sheikha Moza tried to entice Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed to support her opinion in that dialogue, but the Saudi prince, who was present with action and effective, in the country and at the table, pointed out that the position of the Kingdom was to protect the Libyans from the fate they are currently facing.


Sheikha Moza did not find anything but to hide her embarrassment, saying that she was born in Benghazi and therefore she hated Gaddafi, but Sheikha Moza's hatred for Gaddafi is due to personal reasons.


The view of the Saudi monarchy is that any national leader coming on tanks of a Western force, will not be acceptable to the citizens. This is what will always make the changing countries vulnerable to constant instability. 

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