Normally the US would be mediating the dispute – successfully – between Qatar on the one hand and Saudi Arabia and the UAE on the other. After all, the US has a significant military base in Qatar. By not backing the Al Thanis the expected value of hosting a US base has fallen dramatically. It apparently doesn’t buy a country much protection.
New battle lines are being drawn in the Mideast. Qatar’s move to acquire a stake in American Airlines is part of a much larger story than simply an investment in a U.S. airline.