Saudi Arabia has been among the firmest allies of George Bush and his Republican administration, but in a recent poll taken by the Saudi Gazette revealed a surprising support among a wide range of citizens for the candidacy of Barack Obama. Eight out of ten Saudis who were interviewed preferred Obama over the Republican candidate, John McCain. Most people expressed a hope that Obama would be more successful at dealing with resolving the Middle East crisis and finally end the conflict between Israel and Palestinians. They also wanted an end to the American occupation of Iraq and action to deal with energy issues. A few Saudis referred to McCain’s age and “hot temper” as factors that turned them away from his candidacy.
The overwhelming support for Obama had nothing to do with rumors that he is a Muslim, but stem from desires on the part of people in the Middle East for peace and security. They just don’t trust McCain to accomplish those goals.