Is Prince Bandar Really Back? The Road from Morocco to Riyadh……..


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“Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan will return to the kingdom within days after spending around two months abroad for surgery and retake his position as intelligence chief, including control of the Syrian dossier, said Saudi security officials late Sunday. The Saudi officials said that during Prince Bandar’s absence, Saudi Interior Minister Mohammed bin Nayef was put in charge of the Syrian file and of the intelligence agency. The three security officials said the 65 year-old prince was seeking medical attention in the U.S. and resting in Morocco after surgery on his shoulder. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media……… The officials said that Bandar held a number of official meetings while in Morocco, including with Saudi deputy defense minister Salman bin Sultan. The deputy defense minister briefed Bandar on his official visits to Washington and Paris last month, they added, also saying that Bandar met Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan while in Marrakech……………..”

Bandar is back in from the cold! Is Bandar back yet once again? That would make a good title for a Saudi film, except that there are no theaters to show it over there; verboten. This is another chapter in the saga of Bandar Bin Sultan Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. He has become like a Saudi Jack in the Box, in and out, and back in. But all this is also part of the continuing Saudi turf war and jockeying for position among the various competing princes.
Something about Morocco and Saudi princes (or is it all Gulf potentates now)? Older Saudi princes usually go there after serious surgery in the West, they go to Morocco to recuperate or die or both. Sometimes they recuperate before returning home and dying quickly. Younger ones go there to enjoy the kind of relaxed life they deny their own peoples at home. Now apparently other princes and shaikhs from the among the Persian Gulf’s ruling families, and even many of their oligarchy allies among the merchant classes, have discovered the joy or R&R in Morocco. No wonder the Saudi King tried to add that kingdom to the Gulf GCC: he associates it with good times, sort of.
Oddly, or maybe not so oddly, it is all a stag party in Old Maroc. Apparently all princes, but no princesses. The royal chicks still prefer the perfumed feminine shopping galleries of Europe to blow their oil revenues.

Here is a list of just a few of many posts on this topic:

Saudi Prince Bandar Joins Waldo: But Where Are They?

Bandar Goes to Washington, May Seek Syrian Presidency

Syria’s Opposition Fractures More: General Idriss Refuses to be Fired, About Prince Bandar

Bribe, Baby, Bribe: the United Kingdom of Arabia and BAE Systems

Lockerbie in Perspective: Retaliations and “Bribe, Britannia, and Rule the Trade”

Saudis to Bandar: Baby Come Back, Baggage and All