In a recent Saudi TV interview, Abdul Rahman Al-Otaiby, a dean at the Naif Arab University for Security Sciences, said that Saudi Arabia had to develop nuclear weapons in order to create a balance of power with Iran. Al-Otaiby, speaking on the Saudi 2 TV channel on May 19, advocated taking the offensive, saying: Force is the right thing, in politics, at least.
Following are excerpts:
Abdul Rahman Al-Otaiby: At the end of the day, we need to develop ourselves. We cannot rely on others. He is right, Mr. Muhammmad. We need to develop our nuclear capability. I think I have to say this honestly, because Iran will not stop [its nuclear program]. I remember about two or three weeks ago, the Middle East newspaper brought a whole profile about a nuclear plan that was not discussed in the negotiations between Iran and the P5+1.
Interviewer: You mean that it was withheld. Was it withheld or just ignored?
Abdul Rahman Al-Otaiby: With so much details… I was surprised that these things underground are running…
Abdul Rahman Al-Otaiby: To produce these things, these nuclear weapons… This plant – especially this plant – was not mentioned in the negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran. So this is a big problem.
Interviewer: This is an issue.
Abdul Rahman Al-Otaiby: We have to develop our capability – let me say it frankly, nuclear weapons – to make a balance of power. If there is no balance of power… Even President Barack Obama, last night, at the Camp David Summit – his conclusion was there will be a meeting or some opening between the GCC and Iran in the next couple of months or a year or so. I don’t think we can, because unless Iran goes back to its geographical limit – not in Syria, not in Iraq, not in Lebanon – I don’t think that it is in our interest to be open with Iran, unless Iran respects the international laws.
If we need to be defending ourselves, we need to be offensive as well.
Al-Otaiby: As Mr. Muhammad said, the "logic of force"… Force is the right thing, in politics, at least.