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Saudi Arabia muscles itself back into Levant theatre

Former Lebanese militia leader Samir Geagea’s embarrassment at having sent an envoy to beg the Saudis for money on behalf of his near-bankrupt Lebanese Forces party (see page 8) will have been greatly enjoyed by his many political opponents. Christian Geagea, now a presidential candidate, is allied to the Sunni March 14 coalition backed by Saudi Arabia, so the news of Riyadh’s alleged support is no surprise. But, along with other diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks, his willingness to appeal to Saudi largesse neatly illustrates the dependence of Lebanese and other Levantine players on Gulf sponsors.

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