DOHA/WASHINGTON - Upset at President Barack Obama's policies on Iran and Syria, members of Saudi Arabia's ruling family are threatening a rift with the United States that could take the alliance between Washington and the kingdom to its lowest point in years.
Saudi Arabia's intelligence chief is vowing that the kingdom will make a "major shift" in relations with the United States to protest perceived American inaction over Syria's civil war as well as recent US overtures to Iran, a source close to Saudi policy said on Tuesday.
Prince Bandar bin Sultan told European diplomats that the United States had failed to act effectively against Syrian President Bashar Assad or in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, was growing closer to Tehran, and had failed to back Saudi support for Bahrain when it crushed an anti-government revolt in 2011, the source said.
"The shift away from the US is a major one," the source said. "Saudi doesn't want to find itself any longer in a situation where it is dependent."