Declassified

U.S. Scrambles to Repair Damaged Saudi Ties

Disagreement over Syria and distrust over Iran threatens a crucial relationship.

All smiles.

Photographer: Chip Somodevilla

U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter will soon head to Saudi Arabia to discuss ways to increase cooperation in the war against the Islamic State. But there’s little indication he will be able to restore a vital relationship that’s become riven with distrust in the last year, which would require him to reassure the Saudis on the very nature of the U.S. commitment to the kingdom and the region.

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