US Aims to Calm Saudi Anger Over Syria, Iran Diplomacy

Kerry Assures Prince US 'Shares' Saudi Goals

After a failed effort to sell the American public on a war with Syria, Secretary of State John Kerry’s job increasingly has boiled down to apologizing to other nations for America’s recent involvement in international diplomacy.

Amid ongoing efforts to placate Israel over the sudden outbreak of negotiations, particularly with Iran, Secretary Kerry now met with Saudi Prince Saud al-Faisal, aiming to calm his government’s anger about the talks with Iran and the lack of war with Syria.

With the Saudi government throwing huge support behind the rebels, the lack of a US invasion of Syria is a particular sore spot, and the Saudi stance toward chemical disarmament has been indifference, at best, and annoyance that the disarmament deal got in the way of a Western invasion.

Kerry sought to assure the Saudi prince that the US shares its “goals” of ending Iran’s civilian nuclear program, ending Syria’s civil war and a “stable Egypt,” but particularly within the Saudi government those stated goals in Iran and Syria are simply shorthand for regime change, and anything that moves the US further away from invading those nations is going to be seen as contrary to the Saudi agenda, and the Saudis will continue to distance themselves from the US.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.