Saudi - Palace Coup under way?

Strait_Jacket

War Hero

Saudi King Hospitalized for Dementia


Informed sources told Arabic-language al-Ahd news agency that King Salman is now in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) section of King Faisal Specialist Hospital in the Saudi capital.

The sources also said that given the Saudi king's unstable and aggravating health conditions, officials have ceased plans to transfer him to US hospitals.

King Salman, 80, is thought to have Alzheimer’s or dementia and the government is practically administered by his Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef.

According to witnesses, his exact state of dementia is a source of speculation but he is known to have held cogent conversations as recently as last October. He can also forget what he said minutes ago, or faces he has known all his life. This is typical of the disease.

Sources close to the Saudi monarchy revealed earlier this year that the number of hospital visits by King Salman in the last few months has increased and that he did not walk around, as he did before.
also here

Haven't seen this yet on any major news sites but IF (yes, a big if) true perhaps Bin Nayef is moving to put the Al Saud house back in order?
 

NSP

LE
One less human rights abusing, backward-thinking medievalist dictator in the world if he pops his clogs. Sooner the better.

Actually, I don't really care what happens to that basket case country beyond them not exporting their warped ideas and religion-based fanaticism, and wanting to see the oil price rise enough to unshelve all the infrastructure investment plans on hold for the North Sea. I'm going to make a killing when it gets back to "normal..."
 
It’s Time for the United States to Start Worrying About a Saudi Collapse
By John Hannah October 7, 2015 3:29 PM Foreign Policy Magazine

Interesting points in that article:

As if there weren’t already enough problems to worry about in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia might be headed for trouble. From plummeting oil prices to foreign-policy missteps to growing tensions with Iran, a confluence of recent events is mounting to pose some serious challenges for the Saudi regime. If not properly managed, these events could eventually coalesce into a perfect storm that significantly increases the risk of instability within the kingdom, with untold consequences for global oil markets and security in the Middle East.

Here are some of the percolating problems that could throw the country off kilter.

Fissures Within the Royal Family. Last week, the Guardian published two letters that an anonymous Saudi prince recently circulated among senior members of the royal family, calling on them to stage a palace coup against King Salman. The letters allege that Salman, who ascended to the throne in January, and his powerful 30-something son Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have pursued dangerous policies that are leading the country to political, economic, and military ruin. In an interview with the Guardian, the prince insisted that his demand for a change in leadership not only had growing support within the royal family but across broader Saudi society as well. “The public [is] also pushing for this very hard,” he claimed. “They say you have to do this or the country will go to disaster.” The article, which includes the letters, written in Arabic, has been shared more than 15,000 times.

The Yemen War. The longer it drags on, the greater the risk that the Saudi intervention against Houthi rebels could become a serious source of internal dissension. In its story on the prince’s letters, the Guardian reported that “many Saudis are sickened by the sight of the Arab world’s richest country pummelling its poorest.” Particular blame is attached to Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who also serves as the kingdom’s defense minister and by all accounts has been the driving force behind the war effort. Tagged with the unofficial nickname “Reckless,” Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been accused of rushing into Yemen without a clear strategy or exit plan, resulting in mounting costs in blood and treasure, an ever-expanding humanitarian crisis, and growing international criticism.


More:

It’s Time for the United States to Start Worrying About a Saudi Collapse
 
Odds on us backing the wrong bloke are...?
 

Mr_Fingerz

LE
Book Reviewer
I thought it was OPEC by restricting their production rates?
KSA have driven prices down - in part to snuff out the fracking industry. The recession has meant that demand - especially in India and China - isn't what it once was.

The industry will take two to three years to recover once prices start to rise again. So I may as well retire now.
 

simbo

LE
So- how does 'Saudi King Hospitalised' morph into 'Palace Coup Under Way'? Calm down, calm down.
 
KSA have driven prices down - in part to snuff out the fracking industry. The recession has meant that demand - especially in India and China - isn't what it once was.

The industry will take two to three years to recover once prices start to rise again. So I may as well retire now.
You're also forgetting that China and India* have large frackable resources and the fracking genie is well and truely out of the bottle. Also, unlike 'old' oil, it does not take up the huge amount of resources and cash to setup and run.
The ME certainly won't stop selling and exporting oil any time soon but it probably won't be in the quantities and for the prices of the golden years.
As someone mentioned earlier. We haven't reached peak oil but possibly peak demand (but only as regards the ME).

*India has a problem in that it does not have the water quantities needed in the areas to actually get to them!
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
You're also forgettign that China and India have large frackable resources and the fracking genie is well and truely out of the bottle and unlike 'old' oil it does not take up the huge amount of resources and cash to setup and run.
The ME certainly won't stop selling and exporting oil any time soon but it probably won't be in the quantities and fr the prices of the golden years.
As someone mentioned earlier. We haven't reached peak oil but possibly peak demand (but only as regards the ME).
More importantly, it (the ME) loses that absolute control of being a near-sole supplier. Fracking is a game-changer and it's becoming less and less expensive to do.
 

Command_doh

LE
Book Reviewer
Loosely related to the topic but so enlightening....Saudi woman films husband abusing a maid, posts video on-line and now faces jail time....


Saudi woman posts video of husband sexually abusing maid – and now faces jail

And rightly so. Islam specifically allows the husband to have any woman 'that your right arm possesses'. Clearly she is a woman, inferior, and a slave. He can have her any time he wants. Further, the qur'an states his wife can never refuse him sex, so it is her fault. Of course she should go to jail.

Nothing wrong with the picture above, move along. Nothing to see here.

OT, Old King senile, Crown Prince takes the job, nothing changes. Thousands of family members to chose from for the successor. Non story.
 

Strait_Jacket

War Hero
So- how does 'Saudi King Hospitalised' morph into 'Palace Coup Under Way'? Calm down, calm down.
I was asking whether the former - if true - might indicate a bit of the latter.

From what I understand MBN and MBS are effectively running the Kingdom anyway as Salaman's faculties are AWOL, but given the ongoing cock ups MBS is associated with and the apparent calls for family meetings to discuss the situation, it wouldn't be surprising (imo) to see MBN make a move before the good King Alzheimers can be persuaded by the ambitious MBS to bump him up to next in line.

Basically I'm half expecting some movement in the leadership stakes and thought this development might be an indicator of change incoming.

Or maybe not.
 

Dread

LE
You're also forgetting that China and India* have large frackable resources and the fracking genie is well and truely out of the bottle. Also, unlike 'old' oil, it does not take up the huge amount of resources and cash to setup and run.
The ME certainly won't stop selling and exporting oil any time soon but it probably won't be in the quantities and for the prices of the golden years.
As someone mentioned earlier. We haven't reached peak oil but possibly peak demand (but only as regards the ME).

*India has a problem in that it does not have the water quantities needed in the areas to actually get to them!
Sorry, but the bit I've put in bold is incorrect. A normal drilling rig costs about 3 million USD. A fracking rig costs between 9 and 12 million USD. Where fracking is easier (and thus cheaper) than oil is when you compare onshore fracking with deep off-shore oil wells e.g. comparing fracking sites such as the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas with the deep-water rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Apart from the cost of the rig, the cost of the infrastructure is identical: once out of the ground, oil is oil.

Typically oil costs 7 - 10 USD per bbl to extract and get to the point of loading in the US (at least, this is what it costs my clients). Fracking costs 11 - 17 USD per bbl (in Texas, where I have clients doing this). Saudi can get its oil out of the ground at 1.5 - 2 USD per bbl. North Sea oil, and the deeper Gulf of Mexico wells have a cost of approx 35 - 55 USD per bbl (which is why much of the North Sea and many Gulf wells are currently in hibernation).
 
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I have supported a couple of seismic projects in Vietnam (with landmine and UXO clearance). The results we got were encouraging for both oil and gas but there has been no move to exploit the reserves that were found, because it just isn't economic to do so at the current time.

When I was managing the minefield and UXO clearance at the Yadavaran oilfield in Iran, the plan was to get one well up and running to finance the development of the rest. Then along came the recession and the fall of Oil prices. The Chinese had sunk countless millions (the staff accommodation bill in Tehran was over a million US$ a year alone) into the project and don't have much to show for it.

What happens in Saudi in the near future will be interesting.
 

alib

LE
Sorry, but the bit I've put in bold is incorrect. A normal drilling rig costs about 3 million USD. A fracking rig costs between 9 and 12 million USD. Where fracking is easier (and thus cheaper) than oil is when you compare onshore fracking with deep off-shore oil wells e.g. comparing fracking sites such as the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas with the deep-water rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Apart from the cost of the rig, the cost of the infrastructure is identical: once out of the ground, oil is oil.

Typically oil costs 7 - 10 USD per bbl to extract and get to the point of loading in the US (at least, this is what it costs my clients). Fracking costs 11 - 17 USD per bbl (in Texas, where I have clients doing this). Saudi can get its oil out of the ground at 1.5 - 2 USD per bbl. North Sea oil, and the deeper Gulf of Mexico wells have a cost of approx 35 - 55 USD per bbl (which is why much of the North Sea and many Gulf wells are currently in hibernation).
The last big strategic report I read of oil out to 2080 had fracking as a bit of a blip. High setup costs and relatively brief production times. Big up front, usually highly leveraged, investment vulnerable to periods of depressed oil prices. The bottom line was the ME fields were reckoned to be getting even more critical by 2030 and remaining so out to 2080.

The last King's rule was marred by his fondness for incompetent advisors like Prince Bandar. Under this new mob it's become an openly aggressive actor that's both bold and bumbling. If it wasn't for our energy interests what they are doing in Yemen could be mistaken for the actions of a war crimey rogue state. They now killing civ pop faster than Assad. And they've driven a truck through Barry's CT policy in Yemen. Both APAP and IS are expanding there. In Syria they are now backing extreme Salafists fairly openly. This includes JaN, rated as more capable of spectacular attacks against the west than IS. Alarmed by domestic trends towards reform they are stoking up the Saudi street with very sectarian rhetoric against non-sunnis while IS schemes to leverage Saudi bigotry and the conflict in Yemen to topple the monarchy. People don't worry enough about the KSA going tits up.
 
If you have 15 minutes to spare, and the interest, BBC R4 did a profile on Mohammed Bin Nayef this week:

BBC Radio 4 - Profile, Mohammed Bin Nayef

As stated in posts above he is flying high, but the article does not cover the fact that he is effectively Regent.
 
I have supported a couple of seismic projects in Vietnam (with landmine and UXO clearance). The results we got were encouraging for both oil and gas but there has been no move to exploit the reserves that were found, because it just isn't economic to do so at the current time.

When I was managing the minefield and UXO clearance at the Yadavaran oilfield in Iran, the plan was to get one well up and running to finance the development of the rest. Then along came the recession and the fall of Oil prices. The Chinese had sunk countless millions (the staff accommodation bill in Tehran was over a million US$ a year alone) into the project and don't have much to show for it.

What happens in Saudi in the near future will be interesting.
There only seems to be one place planning and stumping up for future seismic of any size at the minute, Abu Dhabi
 

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