Trip by Saudi royal unlikely to herald radical change
The Jerusalem Post / Jonathan Spyer

Iran is the key to Western and Saudi overtures
toward Syria. It is believed that Syria is the "weakest link" in the
Iran-led regional axis. The Saudis are extremely worried at the onward
march of Iranian power in the region, and the prospect that this may be
taking place soon under a nuclear umbrella.
The West, and Saudi Arabia, evidently hope to
initiate a process of coaxing Damascus away from Teheran. Saudi power
is financial power. Riyadh could offer the economically ailing regime
in Damascus a host of economic incentives in return for distancing
itself from Iran.

And finally and most fundamentally, the Syrian
alliance with Iran will not be sacrificed in order to re-build
relations with Saudi Arabia, or with the West. In case anyone had
failed to notice, the Iranians are currently running rings around the
US in the "negotiations" over the Iranian nuclear program. It may be
assumed that the Ba'athis in Damascus have not failed to notice this.
Good luck with the tax agreement. 

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