After Obama promised $1 billion in aid to the Egyptian junta, the Saudis promised four times as much. Saudi financial promises often go unfulfilled, and are almost certainly empty in the case of Egypt, whose Islamists and generals are at odds with the Saudis. Yet, the US-Saudi rift underscores how the American policy of buying influence abroad is a dead-end. The White House cannot provide significant financial assistance to scores of regimes around the globe; sooner or later, a regional country will beat Washington’s offer. This has already happened in Pakistan, where China rushed to replace the American military supplies and economic assistance that Pakistan had jeopardized by harboring Osama. Jordan, too, proved willing to abandon US aid in favor of GCC money.
Only Israel sticks to US dollars, no matter the damage to her national interests.