is Prince Bandar? By Pepe
Was Prince Bandar
"Bush", 63, son of Prince Sultan bin
Abdulaziz (perennial Saudi Defense
Minister,1963-2001), semi-perennial ambassador to
Washington (1983-2005), and secretive jihad
financier, killed by a Syrian intelligence death
Thunderous silence prevails on
Syrian, Iranian and Arab media (most of it
controlled by the Saudis). The same applies for
al-Jazeera. This is DEBKA's somewhat fanciful take.
Dates are crucial. Prince
Bandar bin Sultan
bin Abdulaziz Al Saud may have
pulled off operation "Damascus Volcano" on July
18. He was definitely promoted to head of Saudi
intelligence on July 19. And he might have been
killed in a bomb attack on the Saudi General
Intelligence HQ in
Riyadh on July 22.
One Syrian rumor mill version rules that
"Damascus Volcano" came from Saudi intel - with
logistics provided by the Central Intelligence
Agency (CIA). This is highly unlikely; the CIA is
clueless on how to penetrate Assad's inner
sanctum. The predominant version circulating in
the Syrian capital is this was a white coup.
"Damascus Volcano", by the way, was a
flop; the swarm of mercenaries - infiltrated via
Jordan - who were supposed to take over the
capital had to retreat up north. Now the news
cycle is fixated on another faux
game-changer - the "Battle of Aleppo".
There are serious problems with all the
spin around "Damascus Volcano". None of the Assad
regime's four heads of military intelligence were
killed - they are actually running the (ghastly)
show in Aleppo.
There are also problems
with a Syrian death squad being able to strike
Riyadh's inner sanctum. But Iranian intelligence
could certainly pull this off. As for Debka's
assumption that Tehran may have hired al-Qaeda
jihadis for an inside job against the House of
Saud, that is rubbish.
The bottom line; no
one knows, because no one is talking.
is certain is that Bandar as head of Saudi
intelligence was part of King Abdullah's hardcore
response to the Arab Spring.
In Syria, the
House of Saud strategy boils down to regime change
- and a fragile, fragmented, Sunni government in
Damascus not aligned with Tehran.
Internally, the strategy is to viciously
smash any peaceful Shi'ite-majority protest in the
eastern provinces. Essentially, there's no Arab
Spring in Saudi Arabia because the House of Saud
either bribes or intimidates its subjects.
The overall strategy of choice is "blame
it on Iran"; as this logic goes, Saudi Shi'ites
are Iranian puppets as much as Bahraini Shi'ites.
The Obama administration blindly subscribes to
this fallacy - totally missing the point; the
House of Saud hates any semblance of Western
parliamentary democracy as much as it hates
Shi'ites - Iranian and otherwise.
happened in Riyadh? A graphic Tehran message to
the House of Saud? A rogue suicide bomber? An
internal Saudi war? The House of Saud is not
talking. And Bandar is not moving.