Saudi Arabia telegraphed further opposition to the Obama administration’s ongoing push for the nuclear deal with Iran this week. This took place only days after the nation’s leader “snubbed” the president’s Persian Gulf Summit at Camp David.
The nation’s former head of intelligence argued the Sauds would match Iran’s nuclear capabilities as a matter of national security: “We can’t sit back … as Iran is allowed to retain much of its capability…” Further, Prince Turki bin Faisal has said they will not fall behind: “Whatever the Iranians have, we will have, too,” he declared at a recent conference in South Korea.
The remarks echoed similar sentiments from other Sunni nations in the Gulf who, in stark irony, are pursuing the very course President Obama argued would be prevented by the so-called ‘good deal’ with Iran.
Obama’s original pitch for the deal was its absence would create a “free-for-all” in the region in which nations would race to obtain nuclear weapons. Given the current framework of the deal, which is set to be finalized in two weeks, Iran will be allowed to maintain its current nuclear technology, a reality unsettling to its Arab enemies.