Patrick Skinner Quoted on NBC News: As Kerry Courts Saudis, What Might They Do?
June 27, 2014

As Kerry Courts Saudis, What Might They Do?

NBC News
By: Hasani Gittens and Catherine Chomiak


How important is Saudi Arabia to the United States as chaos erupts in Iraq? At least two straight days of meetings could give some insight.

Secretary of State John Kerry is in Jeddah on Friday for talks with King Abdullah on the crises around the region, especially the rampaging threat in Iraq from the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).

It will be the second meeting in as many days with representatives from the kingdom. Kerry also met on Thursday with Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister in France…

“When it looks to the north, it is unclear what the Saudi government sees,” wrote analyst Patrick Skinner from The Soufan Group in an intelligence brief this week. “In the near-term, it is difficult to overstate the deep animosity that Riyadh has towards Tehran. Saudi Arabia likely doesn’t want instability on its borders but it might tolerate it for a while if it weakens Iranian influence over Iraq…”



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