Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/884/22011

From The Socialist newspaper, 13 January 2016

Saudi Arabia mass executions

Tories back despots

Simon Carter

The recent execution of 47 prisoners by Saudi Arabia's rulers has been widely condemned as barbaric. These killings have also ratcheted up tensions with the oil-rich state's main regional political rival - Iran.

The latter's regime has issued warnings over the killing of Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, a prominent political opponent of the Saudi Arabian Sunni regime.

Saudi's ruling clique, which executed 151 people last year (mostly for non-violent drugs offences), has said the executions were of "terrorists". But the country's repressive judicial system is notorious for witch-hunting the regime's critics, especially among its Shia minority community.

Iran on its part is equally notorious for its regular executions of political opponents since the country's 1979 revolution.

The two regional powers were already in conflict, with their proxy wars being fought in Syria and Yemen.

Since the executions the Saudi Arabian embassy in Tehran, Iran, has been firebombed, while Tehran has accused Saudi Arabia of "intentionally" bombing its embassy in the Yemen capital, Sanaa.

This deepening antagonism has polarised the region's ruling classes.

Cameron

Despite the feudal-rulers of Saudi Arabia having one of the worst human rights records of any country on the planet, UK Tory Prime Minister David Cameron remained tight-lipped in condemning the latest spate of executions.

The Foreign Office merely expressed "concern". Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond suggested there was little point condemning the executions, since it wouldn't change the minds of Saudi's rulers.

One year ago Cameron, along with a host of other Western 'democratic' leaders, jetted off to Saudi Arabia to attend the funeral of the country's absolute monarch King Abdullah and endorse the succession of his half-brother Prince Salman to the throne.

The Tory government's reluctance to criticise the House of Saud has a lot to do with lucrative arms and other trades deals with Britain, as well as Saudi Arabia's vast oil reserves.

The regime is also a key regional power broker, vital to western governments' geo-political interests in the Middle East.

Last October, on Channel 4 news, David Cameron repeatedly refused to answer questions on Britain's secret security pact with Saudi Arabia (which saw both countries elected to the United Nations Human Rights Council).

Cameron eventually conceded that the British government "has a relationship with Saudi Arabia" which means "we receive from them important intelligence and security information".

Cameron also admitted that he personally had not intervened in the widely publicised case of 17-year-old Ali Mohammed al-Nimr (nephew of Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr), arrested during the Arab Spring protests three years ago and who faces execution.

Economy

Saudi Arabia is dependent for 90% of its revenues on oil sales. However, the collapse in world oil prices has resulted in the country's budget deficit ballooning to an enormous 15% of GDP last year, gouging $100 billion of its $650 billion of foreign reserves.

In turn, this has prompted spending cuts and hikes in petrol, electricity and water prices.

A combination of cutting subsidies and increasing taxes on the population can only deepen discontent within the kingdom.

Undoubtedly it is the fear of widening internal dissent that in part lays behind the recent mass executions and the regime's clampdown on 'terrorism'.

The executions also reflect Saudi leaders' anger at the western powers' rapprochement with Iran over its nuclear programme - forgetting that it has been the continual support of the West that has kept the House of Saud in power.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 13 January 2016:


What we think

Corbyn must lead a fight against the right and for an anti-austerity programme


NHS

NHS not safe in Tory hands

Junior doctors' strike: picket photos and reports

Health workers under attack!

Doctors battle burnout as 100 full-up GP surgeries apply to shut their doors

"Shattered but proud", a day in the life of a student nurse

Student nurses march to oppose bursary cut


Socialist Party news and analysis

Bosses 'earn' year's pay in under a week

BBC planned live Labour resignation to damage Corbyn

EU probes power plant for wrongdoing over switch from coal to biomass

What We Saw

Them & Us


Housing crisis

Slums, speculation, sell-offs and sardines

Cameron's housing con

Housing staff strike against cuts

Cameron's 10,000 new homes won't hide the problem

476,000 homes in England go unbuilt by speculators


Council cuts

A clear strategy to defeat the Tory cuts

Council uses reserves to stop cuts

Councillors must resist cuts

Southampton people's budget meeting


Readers' comments and reviews

Victor Jara's revolutionary life, poetry and politics

Letters


International socialist news and analysis

Sexual assaults in Cologne exploited by racist establishment and far right

Saudi Arabia mass executions

Honduras: Day of the endangered lawyer


Workplace news and analysis

West Dunbartonshire teachers strike

Energy-filled pickets at EDF

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

"We hope to inspire people to go out and spread their passion for the Socialist"

Report: Socialist Party national women's meeting

Eleanor Marx: a life of struggle, solidarity and socialism


 

Home   |   The Socialist 13 January 2016   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Middle East:

triangleThe ongoing capitalist crisis and the struggle for a socialist world

triangleAhed Tamimi - worldwide symbol of self-esteem in face of oppression

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: The Middle East

triangleJordan: Workers and youth remove prime minister and demand end to austerity

triangleCampaigning in Southampton for school and college walkouts when Trump visits Britain on 13th July

Saudi Arabia:

triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleSyria: No ceasefire for 'hell on earth' eastern Goutha

triangleAttacks ratchet-up Syrian conflict and fuel tensions between powers

Tories:

triangleTUC congress Brexit debate: unions must lead fight for a general election

triangleTories in chaos - general election now!

triangleTory and Blairite racist policy is behind Windrush fatality

Oil:

triangleTGIFriday workers at Stratford, London. TGI staff at a number of restaurants have been on strike against cuts in their tips.

triangleNo to Trump's climate change chaos

Iran:

triangleUnited working class movements can defeat Trump

David Cameron:

triangleDodgy MP lobbied for genocidal Sri Lankan leader

Human rights:

triangleWorkers' protests against state repression in China and Hong Kong

Arms:

triangleThem & Us

Arab:

triangleIsrael - Protest rally against the Nationality Law

International

International

19/9/18

Catalonia

Catalonia: 'Diada' 2018 an immense show of strength for republic

19/9/18

South Africa

South Africa: new workers' formations herald fightback against Ramaphosa's capitalist agenda

19/9/18

Jeff Bezos

Bezos housing hypocrisy

12/9/18

Ireland

Ireland housing occupations

12/9/18

Sweden

Sweden: left and far right gain as establishment parties falter

12/9/18

Russia

Support for Putin's regime dips over major attacks on state pensions

12/9/18

Nicaragua

Nicaragua: With the people against the Ortega government and imperialism

5/9/18

Germany

Germany: violent attacks in Chemnitz - how can the far right be stopped?

29/8/18

China

China: Solidarity with Jasic Technology workers

29/8/18

Venezuela

Venezuela: How can reaction and imperialism be defeated?

29/8/18

CWI

The ongoing capitalist crisis and the struggle for a socialist world

24/8/18

China

Solidarity with Jasic Technology workers in Shenzhen, China

22/8/18

Italy

Morandi Bridge disaster - private profit to blame

22/8/18

Romania

Huge anti-government demos in Romania

22/8/18

Argentina

Argentina: The struggle for women's lives has been painted green!

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


September 2018

August 2018

July 2018

June 2018

May 2018

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999