You Know We’re in Trouble When Saudi Arabia Turns on Us

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From the New York Times:

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia told Arab leaders on Wednesday that the American occupation of Iraq was illegal and warned that unless Arab governments settled their differences, foreign powers like the United States would continue to dictate the region’s politics.

This is bad news for a number of reasons. The first is obvious — we’ve screwed up our foreign policy so badly over the last six years that even a country long committed to our stead and ruled by people who have business connections to the family of our president are bailing on us. The second is not so obvious — as the United States’ influence in the region wanes, the Saudis are emerging as leaders of the Arab League, and losing them may mean ceding the region completely.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

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It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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