Saudi Crown-Prince Mohammed Bin-Salman calls Iran’s Khamenei “the new Hitler of the Middle East”

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman called Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, “the new Hitler of the Middle East,” and vowed to confront the tyrant to assure that history would not repeat itself. In an interview with the New York Times’ Thomas Friedman, the Saudi Crown Prince was quoted as saying, “But we learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work. We don’t want the new Hitler in Iran to repeat what happened in Europe in the Middle East.” The statement by the powerful Saudi crown-prince, who also serves as Riyadh’s Defense Minister, comes amid growing tension with its regional arch-rival Iran. Saudi Arabia has actively pursued a consensus among both regional and world powers in confronting Iran’s aggression across the Middle East.

Meanwhile, As both Saudi Arabia and Israel view Iran as a main threat to the Middle East and increased tension between Tehran and Riyadh has fueled speculation that shared interests may push Saudi Arabia and Israel to work together; Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said, in an interview with Israel’s Army Radio, that Israel has covert contacts with Saudi Arabia amid common concerns over Iran, in what was a first disclosure by a senior Israeli official on the matter.

While senior Israeli officials continue to carefully point to strengthening relations with the Arab world vis a vis Iran, Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries refuse to comment on the matter, as they continue to maintain an official position, in which any relations with Israel hinge on an Israeli withdrawal from Arab lands captured in the 1967 Middle East war. A Israeli official told TV7, however, that the true reason behind the Arab refusal to disclose their relations with Israel stems from a negative public opinion on the Arab street that must be corrected before the true extent of relations can be revealed.