Changing the Name of Easter?

With one chocolate manufacturer reported to have considered removing the word ‘Easter’ from its chocolate eggs, the question arises once again: is Easter any longer a Christian festival? With recent surveys finding that about 52 percent of the adult population of the United Kingdom has no religious affiliation, and another 8 percent profess a non-Christian faith, Easter now has actual religious significance for only a minority. The major driving force behind the celebration of Easter, as well as Christmas and all other annual holidays, is the market economy, with commercial enterprises seeking ways to exploit every opportunity to boost sales. Whatever its name, it seems likely that the spring holiday will endure as long as there is profit to be made.

It could be Easter, as well as to a lesser extent Christmas, that has contributed to the decline in belief in Christianity. In the light of modern scientific knowledge, the events that are related in the scriptures exceed the bounds of credibility. There is no historical record of them outside of the New Testament. The contemporary historians, Josephus and Philo, who wrote about John the Baptist, Pontius Pilate and other biblical figures, made no mention of Jesus.

It is not hard to see why fewer and fewer people can base their belief on the biblical stories of Christmas and Easter, but the festivals are kept alive by commerce and people’s love of holidays. The calendar dates of these holidays are derived from pre-Christian festivals of great antiquity, and it is likely they are now established as permanent features of human life. Christianity would be more attractive to modern minds if both festivals were abandoned to secular interests.

The solid core of Christianity is the call to love our neighbours and even our enemies. No more elevating message can be imagined. If this were practised globally, there would be peace and happiness for all. Bereft of its superstitions, the religion of love could have universal appeal. Christianity may be in decline, but its central theme thrives ever more strongly in countries with post-Christian societies. The love of humanity is now expressed more than ever before, both collectively and individually. Its manifestations include free universal health care and welfare benefits for the disadvantaged, a plethora of voluntary and charitable activities, and overseas aid to poorer countries. As for Easter, only the name remains, and a chocolate egg by any other name would taste as sweet!

The Jewish Fight With History Is Like the Plight of People Everywhere

God made a covenant with Abraham, promising him land for his seed after 400 years, Genesis 15:13,18. When their time was up, God freed a million slaves from the strongest nation on earth and took Israel to the Promised Land, but not without giving them the greatest document of self-government, the law.

A favorite author said, “There is not a negative in the law of God.” This is because of the motive of love. Because I delivered you from the whip and bondage, because you love Me, you will have no other gods. And it’s not just about God. He didn’t want us lying, stealing, killing or committing adultery. People who do those things are not truly happy. If we live in harmony with His law, we can be healthy and happy.

Because of God’s great law, the Jews have done well in spite of much affliction and persecution which has come partly because they did not always honor the law or the God who gave it as Moses warned in his final words of Deuteronomy. So He scattered them among the nations (Jer 31:10) so that others would learn of Him through faithful witnesses like Daniel, Esther or Nehemiah.

But like the eyes that can betray the presence of a camouflaged tiger, there are details in the Hebrew Scripture that most people shrug off. It leaves them at odds with history as they fight for survival.

We see it in Abraham’s prophecy when he was tested, “God will provide Himself a sacrifice.” Gen 22:8.
We see its details in the sacrificial system of Moses-an innocent lamb without blemish was used.

We see it in Isaiah 53 where a Lamb would be wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our sins. The chastisement of our peace was upon Him and with His stripes, we are healed (and want to live better and not continue the sins that caused His death for us.)

Daniel 9 even gives the time of the Messiah (“anointed”) as 69 weeks of years from a Persian king, Artaxerxes, whose decree in 457 BC allowed the Jews freedom to return and built Jerusalem, Dan 9:25.

That timing fit perfectly the announcement of another Jewish prophet, “Behold the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.” John 1:29. He was calling attention to Yahshua, a Hebrew name that means salvation and health. He spent time healing and preaching to bring health and salvation. [Jesus is a poor translation; there were no “J’s” in Hebrew nor Greek.] Yahshua means Yah (abbreviation) saves.

The Jewish fight with history is the fight of all who fail to see that His life fulfilled dozens of Messianic prophecies, starting with Genesis 3:15. The details of His crucifixion in Psalm 22:16-18 were written centuries before the Romans invented this form of torture. Micah 5:2 foretold He would be born in Bethlehem (a word that means “house of bread”) and He later said, I am the bread of life. Jn 6:35.

He loves Jewish people as He loves all people, “red and yellow, black and white, all are precious in His sight.” Actually, we are all varying shades of brown and alike on the inside. Heeding His words would have saved millions of Jews in 70 AD, but Jewish leaders (like most political leaders) think God is on their side exclusively.

Heeding Christ’s warning would spare millions again. He warned of an “abomination” that the disciples understood as military, and when the Roman army came, they fled and were spared the siege. A better understanding of His words would apply them to what’s impending, because the signs for Jerusalem are also signs for the end of the world, Matt 24:2,3.

The wording in Mark 13:14 is helpful. “When you see the abomination (military) standing where it ought not.” Military ought not to be in the US. We are supposed to have a free land. To see military convoys and armored tanks transported by trains is a warning of impending trouble. Readiness to flee the cities may affect the destiny of those who claim that Christ is Lord (which means they do what He says).

Waiting until it’s undeniable means great loss, for those who did so, were not to go down to get anything out of their house, Matt 24:17.

History is His story, and history repeats worse for those who aren’t looking for its lessons.

The Brewing Global Economic Storm

A two front economic assault is gestating simultaneously in Europe and Asia that threatens to plunge the world into another severe recession or even worse. Once thought of as quasi-indomitable institutions like the European Union and Chinese Communist Party, these institutions are now shaking in their collective designer boots with respect to losing significant credibility and in the long run possibly even more. Greece’s economic downfall is unfolding like a 21st century Greek tragedy and China’s stock market plunge is creating disturbing fissures in the world economic model.

Direct government intervention by China by pumping in billions of dollars to prop up stock prices along with other aggressive administrative tactics may be too little, too late. Though only 10% of Chinese invest in stocks (Chinese prefer hard assets like real estate and gold) vs. 50% of Americans, the Chinese market’s credibility may be seriously damaged.

The genuinely horrifying aspect is that as an autocratic country China can intervene directly and unilaterally in the markets. Yet despite their valiant efforts they may not be able to staunch the hemorrhaging. Adding fuel to the bonfire is the huge shadow market brimming with exotic financial instruments that only a handful of experts understand, a market that has no oversight and can legally bypass regulatory laws. And unlike the thousands of experts in stocks, bonds and commodities, no one knows the impact of these exotic financial instruments when they are under extreme pressure.

Should the crisis worsen dramatically, would China feel compelled to sell, even liquidate their foreign reserves or even US treasury holdings, to prop up its markets and prevent civil unrest? Such a decision would result in a significant blow to its carefully cultivated domestic and world prestige and confirm an economic situation that much worse than officially reported. Certainly China is desperately to find a face saving way out of this morass.

The Chinese government’s priority is to maintain control and credibility while preventing civil unrest. Nonetheless, the Chinese Communist Party is not monolithic and additional economic pressure can create fissures within the leadership threatening to weaken, even destabilize the Communist Party itself. For conspiracy theorists, it’s possible that this plunge could have been cleverly engineered by powerful opponents within the Communist Party to weaken control – legal enablers that created and approved loose regulations allowing conditions for this stock market bubble to froth up and spillover. Any de facto coup would result in the emergence of a so-called savior from a different faction within the ranks of the Communist Party.

Additionally, China is politically cornered because it’s a home-grown disaster which makes it difficult to convince its citizenry that this crisis a western engineered conspiracy. In Europe Greece can conveniently play the victim and blame powerful members of the EU as neo-colonialists within Europe.

For China, with respect to foreign policy this crisis could have a resultant pullback on overseas development endeavors and will ironically pursue an aggressive retrenchment and a doubling-down militarily on their Near Abroad defenses.

This developing crisis is déjà vu from 2008 when an economic hurricane was approaching the US. This time a typhoon is approaching China in 2015. The root causes may be different yet an unrelenting economic downfall will have a similar psychological impact. The world’s central banks are out of ‘bullets’ to protect their respective country’s economies and may be forced to bring a knife to a gunfight.

Institutional collapse of this magnitude or severe weakening always unleashes a Pandora’s box of even nastier scenarios and unpalatable choices including economic volatility, civil instability and the inevitable spillover into economic and political areas not directly affected by this chaos. In other words this will have far-reaching implications and everyone gets pulled into this whirlpool. There is no safe high ground.

Any temporary fixes will be just that, temporary, because there have not been any institutional structural changes since 2008 to minimize a future crisis. No one can print enough money fast enough to paper over the cracks and prevent an impending train wreck. As we enter unknown territory, the unspoken disturbing question with respect to whether the standard “flight to safety” financial instruments like U.S. treasuries, the historic financial lifeboats, can offer protective shelter. But this time it may not a question of having enough lifeboats, rather if there will be any lifeboats at all.

The Chinese government is still a novice concerning the risks and perils of the free market. China is like someone with a fat wallet at a casino. They can read up on case studies all they want, yet it’s altogether another matter of flailing hopelessly about in the turbulent undertow.

There are many lessons to be learned and experienced in a free market with its inevitable hard landings and crashes that are sometimes just as vicious as military battles regardless how much cash you have to support prices. The free market is like trying to control the weather. Even the best engineered structures will not protect an economic behemoth against financial typhoons.

No Right To Bear Arms

In the wake of terrorist attacks in France and the threat of similar atrocities in the UK, a call appeared on Facebook for civilians to be allowed to buy guns with which to fight back against their possible assailants. This prompted a comment to the effect that if civilians were allowed to bear arms in the UK, they wouldn’t need terrorists, they would slaughter one another as they do in the USA. The author of this comment was called a fool and also informed that Jesus wept when he was born. Name-calling usually reveals an absence of rational argument, and it is hard to imagine any tears being shed over the denial of the right to own a gun.

Another correspondent on Facebook commented that his weapons had never slaughtered anyone and they remained where he had left them. This was welcome news, but if the weapons are never used, why have them in the first place. There are cases of even seemingly well secured weapons being stolen by criminals or fired accidentally by children. It is true that most sane individuals may own guns for a lifetime and never allow them to be used to harm anyone, but it is not sane people who commit atrocities; it is the combination of insane or immature people and guns.

Young men, and some young women, in every society become frustrated with the impediments placed in their way, or disillusioned by their lack of progress in life. Often, these feelings are expressed in anger and result in conflict. If guns are available the result can be mass murder, as has happened on so many school campuses in the USA. If guns are not available, the result will usually be limited to a few black eyes and broken noses. Eyes and noses can usually be healed, and the perpetrators can be reformed, but even in the most advanced countries the cures for death are limited.

In a perfect society it might be possible to determine with complete certainty who was mentally stable enough to own a gun, and restrict the issue of licences to this select band. In the real world, however, guns will inevitable get into the hands of people who are insane, immature or of criminal intent. The only practical answer is a complete ban on civilian gun ownership. Criminals will always find ways to arm themselves, but the police have the advantage of knowing that all guns they find are illegal guns; there can be no arguments about a right to hold onto them, and every weapon can be seized. History has shown that countries which follow this policy have far less slaughter on their streets, and in their classrooms, than those which uphold a right to bear arms.

When History Repeats

When history recalls the first two decades of the 21st century, providing that there is history to recall, the descriptive narrative would probably sound like a broken record. The miscues, the what if’s, and the should haves are all in retrospect of a period in which hindsight was the only factor that prevailed. The events during the first part of the 21st century proved once again history so often repeats.

The cast of characters are always different but the scenarios are very reminiscent of previous episodes that have played out all through-out the history of mankind. With the tempest of religious fanatics within the Muslim world waging a holy war against Western cultures today is synonymous with events that have already been played out all through history. But, as always when religions whose ideologies, and cultures, are as different as night and day intermix there are always certain fanatic factions within each religion that continue to engineer the conflicts that have been going on for centuries.

At the beginning of the first century marked the first stage when religions ignited a tempest of violent reprisals. It was the Romans who persecuted the new religion of Christianity. And for the next three hundred years Christians were brutally attacked by the Roman Empire. But, in 313, Constantine the Great, Emperor of Rome issued the Edict of Milan decriminalizing Christian worship that began a three hundred year reprieve form religious persecution. The emperor Constantine became the first great patron of the Christian Church.

It wasn’t until 570 when Muhammad the last prophet and messenger of God was born that set in motion the beginning of another great struggle for a more dominate religion. A religion that would turn Muhammad’s vision of Islam into a great quest and conquest to convert other nations to Islam. The stage was set now for Muslim domination through-out the Mid-East. By the middle of the sixth century the Islamic religion was the one belief that was sweeping across much of the Middle East. What Muhammad did during his life opened the door for the Islamic religion to use what ever means necessary to spread the Muslim faith. The bloody battles for religious domination that ensued are a testament to the will of Muhammad and the Islamic faith. By now the Islamic faith was spreading much faster than Christianity did centuries earlier.

Over time two distinct religions, Christianity and Islam separated by different cultures both took on a more assertive role in expanding their influence through-out the known world. Inner factions within the Muslim nations whose own interpretation of Muhammad’s teachings and the Quran began the first wave of open aggression against the Christian world. All through the years after Muhammad’s death the Muslims began a military campaign that spread through-out the whole Mid-East and into Northern Africa. By 700 A.D. practically every nation in the Mid-East was under Muslim control.

As the Islamic religion began to spread into the western part of Africa they were now ready to expand their conquests into Spain and southern France. During this period both Muslim and Christian faiths could be just as barbaric in securing that their religion continued to spread. To distinct cultures with one objective both on a collision course with destiny and by 732 A.D. in central France was the setting for the real first violent clash between Muslims and Christians. Previously, by 711 the Moors invaded the Iberian Peninsula from North Africa, Today’s, Spain and Portugal and by 732 they had reached Southern France.

One of histories most influential battles that would have had far reaching consequences if the out come was different took place on a gray morning in October of 732 between the cities of Poitiers and Tours in central France. The chance to have history be rewritten was lost when the Franks prevailed. But, in the end it was Charles Martel the leader of the Franks and Charlemagne’s great grand father, whose oath and loyalty was Christianity prevailed and drove the Moors from France. For the next two hundred years the Moors and the Islamic faith continued their expansion and influence through-out Africa and the Mid-East.

It wasn’t until about 1060 A.D. that the Moors were again on the shores of Spain. This time El Cid was the first known Christian military leader to use his friendship with Muslim leaders to forge an alliance. During this time they both shared a common belief that two distinct religions and cultures can amicably coexist. But, it was the Christian religion under the Pope Urban II during this same period was firmly committed to routing out the Muslims that have taken hold of Jerusalem to what many historians feel as the greatest influencer of why many of the Islamic religion continues to harbor a deep seeded condemnation toward Western cultures and Christian beliefs. Some would argue that all the Crusades did was incur the wrath of the Islamic faith, massacre whole populations both Christians and Muslims and create perceptions which developed into a history of war, religious nationalism and continual confrontations that are still prevalent and on-going today.

Many point out that the Crusades were a series of wars of bloodlust, greed and power. We have to realize that war many times is really an escalated conflict of interest usually over money and/or resources. When history repeats especially in the outcome of war is that one culture advances due to newly acquired resources or advancements made from war itself. That being said the rise of Islamic Extremist groups today such as Boko Haram, Al-Qaeda, ISIS and other Islamic terrorist groups are waging a holy war that has nothing to do with gaining advances in either technology or resources but an outright savage intent to annihilate anyone who doesn’t conform to their radical ideology.

For the next 600 years after the Crusades the Islamic religion became splintered into two distinct factions. It should be noted that the split actually began in the year 632. It was in that year the prophet Muhammad died, and a schism came about as 2 main groups of Muslims disputed who should succeed Muhammad as leader of the Muslim community. One group supported the ascension of Abu Bakr a friend of Muhammad’s, and father of his wife Aisha to be the leader. This group supporting Abu Bakr and his method of selection as leader became the Sunnis. The other group became the Shiites. This group was opposed to Abu Bakr’s becoming caliph after Muhammad’s death and the method through which he was chosen. Instead, they believed Muhammad’s son-in-law Ali ibn Abi Talib, should succeed him as caliph.

Abu Bakr and Ali ibn Abi Talib represented more than just themselves in this split. It was the manner and method of their being designated the rightful successors to Muhammad that are at the root of why there are still two distinct factions within the Islamic faith. While Sunnis believed the Quran endorsed a public consensus in who should be caliph, the Shiites believed such a decision was ordained by Muhammad himself and even commanded by God and not a matter of public consensus among Muslims, but God’s command alone, to an extent a divine right.

As time went on these two separate factions within the Muslim communities continued to be the sources of conflict and eventual violent reprisals. By the 16th century the Ottoman Turks who were Sunnis invaded what is today’s Palestine. For the next few centuries the Ottoman Empire continued to gain control over most of the Mid-East. When World War I broke out the British with the help of T.E. Lawrence recruiting many Saudi Arabia tribes to join forces with the British finally defeated the Ottoman Turks. Another factor in the development of instability in the Mid-East was the fact that the Jewish population was continually migrating into Palestine. The League of Nations however following the first World War gave Great Britain the mandate that essentially meant Palestine was to be governed by England. The British promised to help the Jewish population make Palestine their homeland. Meanwhile the Arabs felt that they were betrayed by the British in allowing a Jewish population settle into what the Arabs thought was their land.

During the War T.E. Lawrence was the one person who was mainly responsible for uniting the Arabs in achieving their victory over the Ottoman Turks. What Lawrence tried to accomplish for the Arab nation was to unify Syria, Palestine, and Saudi Arabia into one independent country. It was through his steadfast belief that by unifying these countries peace would finally be a realization through-out this whole region. Unifying the Sunni’s and the Shiites into one nation was his dream. A dream that was never realized because of the British when the Balfour Declaration was ratified. What this did only contributed to a continuation of the destabilization of the whole Middle East.

Right after the war from 1918-1920 T.E. Lawrence and King Fausi the Arabs actually began the unification but, again it was the British with the signing of the Sykes-Picot agreement that sealed the fate for future turmoil to erupt through-out the Middle East. This agreement gave the French control of Syria and the British control of Palestine. What T.E. Lawrence tried to do in helping the Arab nations unite was undermined by the European Nations who were predominately Christian.

There is much speculation that had the British and the French allowed T. E. Lawrence to succeed in helping the Arabs become a united independent country combining Palestine, Syria and Saudi Arabia that today the Mid-East would not be the center of civil war and the bed of terrorist organizations that have mutated from the origins of the Islamic faith. Many have concluded that having Palestine incorporated into this one Arab nation the nation of Israel would have been established in Turkey long before 1948. The virulent rise of terrorism today would have been avoided and two opposite factions of the Muslim faith would be separate eliminating the possibility of territorial domination that we are seeing today.

A lesson to be learned when history repeats especially in the Mid-East. When foreign domination over countries whose own destiny rises or falls the ability or inability to find common ground for stability, equality, and security of their populations future is lost. This results in more instability which so often leads to history repeating. When history repeats as it already has humanity always looses out. Our only hope to ensure that the human existence continues to flourish is to realize that the missteps of the past don’t come back masked in different variations. Variation of the events that have led to civil societies destruction have had repercussions that have only exasperated today’s human experience.

Before Anyone Apologises, Here Are Ten Things You Might Not Know About Slavery

During his visit to Jamaica, David Cameron was asked to give an apology on behalf of the British for their part in the slave trade. If you have a view on that naturally emotive subject, you might find some or all of these facts helpful in deepening your understanding. I found they made a difference to mine. None of these or any other facts in any way justify or mitigate the evil of slavery, past or present.

1. Slavery was not introduced to Africa by Europeans. It existed there before the first explorers and traders went there.

2. The first Europeans to participate in the slave trade were the Portuguese in the Fifteenth Century.

3. The British sent white British prisoners to work as slaves on the plantations in the Caribbean. They were the losers after the Battle of Worcester in the Civil War, The Batle of Sedgemoor in Monmouth’s Rebellion against James II and Jacobites in the 1715 Rebellion.

4. Slavery was held to be illegal in Britain because it violated the principles of Magna Carta etc. but was somehow considered acceptable in British Overseas Possessions.

5. White British and other Europeans were taken as slaves by pirates from Noth Africa during the late Middle Ages until the Eighteenth Century.

6. The British abolished slavery in 1833. Other European nations did so at various dates during the Nineteenth Century. Many Asian and Middle Eastern countries postponed its abolition until the Twentieth Century. In Saudi Arabia’s case it was 1974.

7. Compensation was paid to British slave owners as the Government, and most other people, felt it could not deprive people of their “property” without doing so.

8. In the British Empire the Government had to use force to suppress slavery, as the abolition was not popular with native slave-traders in many places.

9. In Jamaica there are some black and mixed-race people who are descended from free people. There was a brief period when the island had been abandoned by the Spanish before the British arrived. Many slaves went into hiding and de facto became free. Their children were therefore never slaves.

10. Slavery still exists in many places. In Britain it is the domain of people-traffickers. In the Middle East it is thought to go on illegally in many countries but is openly practiced in areas controlled by ISIS. The victims are usually members of minorities.

Personally, I wish the campaigners would concentrate on freeing current slaves rather than keeping old wounds alive, given the complexity of the story and the difficulty in apportioning blame or credit.

After studying Economics and Accountancy at Bristol University, John worked in accountancy, audit and insurance in several types of local authority. He is currently self-employed as JHM Risk Management Services, offering risk management and liability claims-handling services to businesses and other organisations, to enable owners and managers to save time and stress as well as money. John is a member of the accountancy body CIPFA, is a Registered Risk Practitioner with ALARM, and is a Specialist Member of the Institute of Risk Managers.

Political Factors to Consider When Doing International Business

Discussing the future safety of the Saudi Kingdom we should look at the political, social and geographical circumstances which constitute this one of the top oil producers in the world.

The Saudi Kingdom was established on the 23 September 1932 and since then it has been governed by the Saudi family who united most of the Arab tribes living in the Arabic Peninsula and defeating Ibn Rashid dynasty thanks to the British support. That is why the country is called the Saudi Arabia or the Saudi Kingdom. Today, the country is governed by the King Salman bin Abdulzziz being also the Custodian of the Two Holly Mosques since 23 January 2015. He is also the head of the Unitary Islamic Absolute Monarchy. He is going to be succeeded by the Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef who is the Minister of Interior and the Second Deputy Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia. There is also the Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman who is also the Minister of Defence and the Second Deputy Prime Minister who can probably also claim the rights to the throne as the prince who has also became the most powerful prince in the region.

The estimate GDP of the country for 2015 is 1,668 trillion USD with the population of 30,770,375 people. In comparison the estimate GDP of China for 2015 is 18,976 trillion USD with the population of 1,376,049,000 people. Comparing those two powerful countries we can say that Saudi Arabia looks like the riches country in the world. At the first glance the wealth of Saudi Arabia seems to guarantee the prosperity of citizens and the security of the country. However the decrease in the oil prices can have a significant influence on destabilizing the country constituted by united tribes thanks to the Saudi family’s political skills and knowledge.

However there are some weaknesses of the political situation in Saudi Arabia. Those flaws are rooted in the global political situation not only on the Arabian Peninsula. Moreover we should remember about the tribal divisions and the decreasing oil prices whereas the country economy is strongly oil-based. Those three factors:

– Local and global political situation
– Oil prices
– Tribal divisions

are likely to push Saudi economy into a big trap finishing with collapse of that kingdom.

Mark Twain said that the lack of money is the root of all evil. That quote can be clearly seen when we discuss the oil crisis and the global politics. The oil crisis is a straight way to deepen the tribal divisions which can result in the collapse of the tribal confederation under the flag of the Saudi Dynasty. Talking about tribes we should note that there are hundreds of tribes and merchant families who are influential and constituting the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Since the establishment of Saudi Arabia the most powerful tribes were: the Anayzah, Bani Khalid, Harb, Al Murrah, Mutayr, Qahtan, Shammar, and Utaiba. It should be also remembered that before the establishment of the Saudi Kingodom, clans fought each other and the stronger and the more powerful was always the one to be followed. Those clans found the protection of the Saudi Family being supported by the British and American governments. The creation and the existence of Saudi Arabia is based on the loyalty of the clans to the royal family not to the country. Tribal loyalty and belonging are very deeply rooted in the minds of Arabs living there. Therefore the political influence is determined by the tribal relations and connections. Tribal sheikhs can influence political and business affairs on the local and national arena. Following that thought, the money from oil export has always been the guarantee of the Royal Family stability and strong position among the tribes. Furthermore the leading role of Saudi Arabia in oil exports give the Royal Family the leading position among the governors of the gulf states. However the drastically dropping prices of oil cause the losses in the GDP of Arab States.

The International Monetary Fund estimates that the revenues of Saudi Arabia and its Persian Gulf allies will slip by $300 billion this year. Some sources say that the price of oil should be above 100 USD per barrel to be above the brake even point for the Saudi Government whereas the forecasts predict the prices dropping down to 20 USD per barrel.

Coming economic crisis and major four political opponents:

– Sunny Islam activists
– liberal critics
– Shiite minority
– tribal and regional opponents for instance in Hejaz

threaten the stability of the country. The most dangerous group is constituted by the Islamic Activists responsible for the terrorist attacks in the country.

After the King Salam of Saudi Arabia cessation the rivalry for the throne is going to start. The country being the absolute monarchy doesn`t allow any other social or political forces to influence the country`s national and international policies. Weakened monarchy may leave a space for the tribal and sectarian divisions which can activate and reflect the Libya scenario during the Arab Spring. We should remember that Libya had an absolute dictatorship for 42 years under the regime of the colonel Muammar Gaddafi, who led the coup against the 17th year old monarchy of King Idris. And the Arab Spring caused the collapse of the Gaddafi regime on 23 October 2011.

Saudi Arabia like Libya has the tribal system. There was no revolt in Saudi Arabia for over 80 years. Looking at the history and one of the samples like Libya, the situation in the region can be picturised like a pot full of boiling water, covered with a lid compressing the steam. The open question is how long the royal had is able to hold that lid.

Wadim Procel MA in International Relations. Graduated from the Naval Academy in Gdynia, Poland. Specializing the in the Middle East international affairs. He is also Polish-English-Arabic Interpreter. Currently working on his doctorate studies at the department of National Security at the Naval Academy.