Useful idiots

Summary: Tom Friedman’s interview with MBS was a missed opportunity to make MBS answer some hard questions about corruption and the Yemen war. As austerity measures continue and the royal family seek to extract revenge, the purge will backfire like MBS’s other policies.

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2 thoughts on “Useful idiots”

  1. Thomas Friedman who was once a serious journalist has turned out to be an entertainer.
    We live in an age where some journalists become famous for being famous, irrespective of what they write!
    The problem is that their “pronouncements” adorn the pages of newspapers which should know better, like the New York Times, and crowd out more critical views from journalists and academics who can at least claim to have first hand knowledge of the countries they are talking or writing about.

  2. Nick Stadtmiller

    A timely and useful riposte to Friedman’s essay.
    I would add that Friedman himself admitted that MbS’s plans are unrealistic, saying, ‘Only a fool would predict its success — but only a fool would not root for it.’
    I am flummoxed by this admission, coupled with Friedman’s vigorous defence of his unqualified support for the radical changes coming out of the Kingdom.
    It seems the best way to encourage positive change in Saudi Arabia would be to warn of the dangers of an overly ambitious reform agenda — and not to root the leadership on as they sprint down a perilous path.

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