Armstrong Economics Blog/Middle East
Re-Posted Nov 14, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The Yemeni Civil War is an ongoing conflict that began in 2015 between two factions. Each is claiming to constitute the Yemeni government. This is really a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Tran. The Houthi forces control the capital Sana’a who are allied with forces loyal to the former president Ali Abdullah Saleh backed by Saudi Arabia. They are opposed by Yemen’s Shiite rebels who are loyal to the religious government of Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi, based in Aden, supported by Iran.
To grasp what this is all about, one must understand Islam. Saudi Arabia in Sunni that boils down to a separation of church and state. They are fighting the Shiite forces of Iran, which believe that religion should control the state. Therefore, the ballistic missile fired by Yemen’s Shiite rebels toward the Saudi capital was manufactured by Iran as if this should be any surprise given that Iran is their backer.
This conflict in the Middle East is religious based. This is similar to the threat of Russia back in the Cold War days when Nikita Khrushchev ruled Russia and the ideology that Marxism would conquer Capitalism was the entire issue. Here we have Iran which is similarly a threat to the world political structure because this is where religion should rule the state. Christianity went through that where the state was ruled by religion and to circumvent religion, kings appointed their political allies as priests, bishops, and cardinal. That led to the Investiture Controversy which was the major conflict between the Pope Gregory VII and the Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV during the 11th century.
Emperor Henry declared Pope Gregory was no longer pope and the Romans should choose a new pope because of political disputes. When Pope Gregory heard of this he excommunicated Henry IV, declared he was no longer emperor and absolved his subjects from the oaths they had sworn to him. This was the battle of kings to control the Church for political gain.
Even if we look at England and Henry VII’s break with the Catholic Church, one need only just look before the headline. Henry’s Queen was Catherine of Aragon (1485–1536) who was the aunt of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (1500–1558) and was originally Charles I of Spain. Charles V had imprisoned the Pope Clement VII (1478– 1534) following the Sack of Rome in May 1527. Correct, the Holy Roman Emperor invaded Rome to take control of the Church and imprisoned the Pope. There was no way Charles V would allow Henry VIII to annul the marriage with his aunt. Once again we have evidence of kings controlling religion for political purposes.
What is unfolding in the Middle East is similar to the war between Protestants and Catholics, which was really for political and economic power. The corruption in the Church was not the design of the Pope when it had been the kings who appointed people in their domain to run the Church – not the Pope. Nothing could illustrate this point more than the case of Saint Thomas Becket (c. 1119–1170), who was a personal drinking buddy of the King. When he appointed him as Arch Bishop of Canterbury, he suddenly found religion. He then stood up to the King and he was slain right at the Altar.
This is a similar nature where here it is the religious Shite seeking to take control of the Middle East and overthrow kings. The recent Saudi Arabia incident of shooting down the Iranian missile on November 4th, 2017 near Riyadh’s international airport, illustrates just how confrontational this really is. Why Obama cut any sort of a deal with Iran given their political beliefs, is truly beyond contemplation.