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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

fascinating peek into the Saudi transition of power

Saudi Arabia is the country to which 1.7 billion Muslims turn five times daily in prayer and is the world’s largest exporter of oil. So it is no wonder that stock markets shuddered, thedepressed price of oil took an uptick, US President Barack Obama cut short a trip to India to fly to Riyadh, and flags were lowered to half mast in Britain, when it was announced on January 23 that King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia had died.
For, many years now Saudi successions have gone smoothly, and there is no reason to suspect that this time it will be any different. Saudi royals know that a succession struggle will only hurt them, and Saudi princes do not want to destroy the cash cow which is Saudi Arabia, one of only two countries in the world named after a family (the other is the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan).