Soldiers of God (Chapter 4, page 2 of 4)


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Chapter 4

The Middle East had been smoldering for many years as the West fought to maintain control of its oil. First Great Britain and then the US were responsible for many blunders. Early on both had used the Soviet Union as an excuse to thwart nationalistic movements in the name of the fight against communism. Then it became the War on Terror as many of the fighters who rallied against the Soviets with US help turned on their enemies in the West and the state of Israel.

But once the oil wells started drying up, there was not much left to fight over. The whole region, including Israel, was barely hanging on as that part of the world descended into a mind-numbing poverty.

The Saudi ambassador was not a stupid man. Educated at Yale in the US and Oxford in England, he was well aware of the dangers his country faced. Three dictators had been deposed since the royal family fell. Yet, because of stupid tradition and culture, he still had difficulties dealing with a woman.

Susan Winters was a powerful woman. She was also close to the new President of the United States. There were many powerful women in the US government. It was now commonplace, here and in Europe, indeed, all over the world. The Saudi remembered visiting with the Prime Minister of Northern Italy not too long ago. He had been impressed with her political savvy.

Still, it is hard to get beyond my country's culture where women have not moved beyond their traditional roles for the most part. Our revolution was not revolutionary enough. The time will come when that tradition will be a thing of the past. Now we waste half our talent. "It's a pleasant day in the nation's capital," said the Secretary of State.

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