Los Angeles Times

A Saudi prince is shaking up the Middle East — and may be pushing it toward war

BEIRUT - From the rocky Mediterranean coast to the warm waters of the Persian Gulf, an impetuous young Saudi Arabian crown prince is making waves across the Mideast, exploiting and exacerbating the region's deep sectarian divides.

Why, many wonder, is Mohammed bin Salman, the 32-year-old heir apparent to the Saudi throne, so assiduously fanning the regional flames? And will it lead to a new Mideast war?

It's all about a long-running rivalry. Saudi Arabia and neighboring Iran are bitter competitors, with each viewing itself as the standard-bearer for its own predominant branch of Islam. The ruling Saudi royal family considers itself the natural leader of the Sunni Muslim world; Iran

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