Policy

Sanders offers blistering condemnation of Saudi Arabia, calls for US troop withdrawal

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) called for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Saudi Arabia and an end to military aid to the kingdom after the OPEC+ bloc announced a cut in daily oil production. 

“If Saudi Arabia, one of the worst violators of human rights in the world, wants to partner with Russia to jack up US gas prices, it can get Putin to defend its monarchy,” the Vermont senator tweeted Friday. “We must pull all US troops out of Saudi Arabia, stop selling them weapons & end its price-fixing oil cartel.” 

Sanders made similar comments Wednesday, tweeting the U.S. “must end OPEC’s illegal price-fixing cartel, eliminate military assistance to Saudi Arabia, and move aggressively to renewable energy.” 

Numerous congressional Democrats have had similar reactions to the announcement, which is poised to counter sanctions on Russian oil and potentially drive up gas prices ahead of the midterm elections.

Legislation introduced in the House by Reps. Sean Casten (D-Ill.), Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.) and Susan Wild (D-Pa.) would remove U.S. troops and military hardware from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. 

Meanwhile, the OPEC+ announcement has also prompted Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) to announce the Senate will continue the so-called NOPEC bill, which passed the Senate Judiciary Committee in May. The bill would alter antitrust law in U.S. lawsuits against OPEC+ member nations and their state oil companies, potentially exposing both Russia’s Lukoil and the Saudis’ Aramco. 

The No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), also called for the passage of the bill this week, and voiced support for a broader reevaluation of the Washington-Riyadh relationship, specifically alluding to “unanswered questions” about the role of the Saudi state in the 9/11 attacks.  

“The Saudi royal family has never been a trustworthy ally of our nation,” Durbin said Thursday. “It’s time for our foreign policy to imagine a world without this alliance with these royal backstabbers.” 

Tags Bernie Sanders Bernie Sanders Charles Schumer Chuck Schumer OPEC+ OPEC+ Russia Ukraine Russian war in Ukraine saudi arabia Saudi Arabia US military us troop withdrawal US weapons

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