Beheadings in Saudi Arabia have reached highest levels in the last two decades, with 147 people beheaded in 2015, and 47 people beheaded on January 2 2016. Among the ones beheaded were a famous Shiite cleric and many members of Al Qaeda.
Saudi Arabia escaped the Arab Spring because of the high social expenditures she can afford to offer her citizens from her oil exports, which in turn keep the Saudi citizens happy and calm. However the Saudis have followed a policy of high oil production and low oil prices, in order to “kill” the American companies that produce oil from shale rock, and in order to cripple Russia and Iran who count on oil exports, and who fight the Saudis in Syria.
As a result the Saudis face a serious worsening of their fiscal position. That means that Saudi Arabia will not be able to sustain the same level of social expenditures, which in turn means that Turkey and Iran will have the chance to increase their influence to the unhappy Sunni and Shiite citizens of Saudi Arabia respectively.
Saudi Arabia was among the aggressors in some of the wars of the Arab Spring i.e. in Libya and Syria, but she was among the defenders in some others i.e. Egypt, Bahrain and Yemen. The more the Saudis decrease their social expenditures the greater the chance Turkey and Iran will have to appeal to the Saudi citizens, and the greater the chance that Saudi Arabia will face the Arab Spring even domestically. Therefore I am not surprised by the increase in the levels of the beheadings in Saudi Arabia.
The fire at the Address hotel at the United Arab Emirates in New Year’s Eve should be connected to the beheading in Saudi Arabia, because the United Arab Emirates are a Saudi ally, and if that was a terrorist attack similar plans might exist for Saudi Arabia too.
“Saudi Arabia: beheadings reach highest level in two decades”, January 2015
“Shi’ite cleric among 47 executed in Saudi Arabia, stirring anger in region”, January 2015
“Saudis unveil radical austerity program”, December 2015
“Dubai seeks cause of massive hotel fire at New Year”, January 2015