World War 3? Middle East ‘nearing an EXPLOSION’, warns former White House advisor

Thursday, November 9, 2017
By Paul Martin

THE situation in the Middle East is “nearing an explosion”, a crisis expert and former White House advisor has warned.

Thu, Nov 9, 2017

Robert Malley, vice president for policy at the International Crisis Group, has claimed that deteriorating situation in Lebanon could be a “mirror” for what could erupt between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Mr Malley, who served as the White House coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa and Gulf Region under President Obama, said: “Lebanon has long been a mirror for the broader Middle East.

“The region’s more powerful actors use it, variously, as a venue for their proxy wars, an arena in which to play out the Arab-Israeli conflict, and a testing ground for periodic bouts of Saudi-Iranian coexistence.”

His comments follow reports Saudi Arabia’s King Salman is preparing to make his son Prince Mohammed bin Salman the ruler in a shock move following a corruption purge.

According to Mr Malley, there have been at least telling signs that a major conflict is brewing in the Middle East.

He said: “First, Saad Hariri, Lebanon’s prime minister, announced his resignation. The decision was announced by the Lebanese prime minister but it was made in Saudi Arabia.

“Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s crown prince and de facto leader, had reason to want it to happen. Saudi-Iranian tensions are rising and bin Salman is determined to depict Tehran as the source of all regional evils.

“Act two was news that Saudi Arabia had intercepted a missile launched from Yemen and purportedly aimed at Riyadh’s airport.

“This was not the first missile that the Houthis, a Yemeni rebel group enjoying Iranian and Hezbollah support, had fired at its northern neighbour, but its timing and unprecedented range could make it one of the more consequential.

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