US Secretary of State John Kerry spoke with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef at the UN to discuss bilateral ties. Here’s what they might have said to each other.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry: Pleasure to see you your royal highness. I have some very important matters to discuss with you and don’t have much time, so I hope you don’t mind if we launch straight into it.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef: No problem at all.
Kerry: Wonderful. The first thing I’d like to ask is about is your human rights violations in Yemen. You guys sure have been killing an awful lot of civilians over there. According to the U.N. humanitarian coordinator your soldiers have killed or wounded at least 10,000 civilians since beginning the campaign in 2015. Do you think you could, you know, dial it back a little bit? Or maybe just be more careful when you’re getting your bomb on?
Nayef: Listen, we’ve bought $110 billion worth of weapons from y’all since Obama took office. That’s a lot of money. If you don’t like the way we do things we’d be happy to take our business elsewhere. China never asks us these sorts of insulting questions about alleged “civilian casualties.” How can you prove they’re not terrorists anyway? Once someone is just mangled chunks mixed with rubble, terrorists and civilians start to get a lot harder to differentiate
Nayef: Cluster bombs and white phosphorus that you sold to us. As I said we’re happy to take our business elsewhere. Do you want us to kill Iranian-backed terrorists or not? You know what they’re like, always hiding in civilian areas like that school for the blind. We’ll try, but it’s an impossible situation.
Kerry: Ok, ok, I don’t want to upset you. What about Syria. Since 2013, you’ve been the largest foreign backer of rebel militias.
Nayef: I thought you supported the legitimate aspirations of the Syrian people to oust the tyrant Assad?
Kerry: Well in theory, but you were instrumental in founding and funding Jaish al-Islam, the largest rebel group in Syria with 20,000-25,000 soldiers. The thing is that this militia group and many others openly want to establish an Islamist state with sharia governance. We were rather hoping this thing could finish up with a nice Western-style liberal democracy. You’ve spent billions funding rebel groups, but what’s the endgame here? Another repressive Islamist regime? Maybe Assad wouldn’t be so bad after all, you know?
Nayef: Listen up Johnny boy. After all your smack-talk about red-lines and chemical weapons and the thousands of his own people he has killed, 86,000 civilians dead since the start of the war, of which he’s thought to have killed 75%, you want us to swallow keeping that viper as president of Syria? Besides, you have no idea what you’re doing there. CIA-backed militias have reportedly engaged in combat with Pentagon-backed militias!
Unlike you, we’re in it to win, and we’re not going to stop backing the rebels just because they take religion seriously, unlike your godless citizenry.
Kerry: OK, ok. But what about women’s rights in your kingdom? Human Rights Watch has launched the campaign to end your patriarchal male guardianship laws, which keep women trapped in a system of gender apartheid. Will you be acting to repeal those laws and bring Saudi Arabia into the 2st Century?
Nayef: Why? So our women can walk around half naked like they do in America, whoring themselves out to every guy they see, not even caring if they get raped? Clearly you do not understand Islamic values of honor and chastity. I suggest you take a cultural sensitivity course instead of imposing your colonial paradigms of women’s liberation onto our ancient and noble culture.
Kerry: One more thing, could you release imprisoned human-rights activist Raif Badawi? Ten years in prison and 1,000 lashes for writing a blog seems a bit much.
Kerry: Ok, well I guess that’s about it then.
Nayef: Thank you for your time, Mr Secretary. I do so enjoy our little chats.