Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al Saud
Khalid bin Sultan, former minister of defense is a member of the House of Saud. Prince Khalid bin Sultan was born eldest son to the late Prince Sultan and Munira bint Abdulaziz bin Musaed bin Jalawi on 24 September, 1949. Khalid is full brother to Fahd bin Sultan, Faisal bin Sultan and the late Turki bin Sultan. The mother of these three died August 24, 2011 in Paris. Moneera bint Abdulaziz, the sister of Alnoud wife of King Fahd was cousin to King Khalid and Prince Muhammed.
Khalid bin Sultan graduated from King Saud University, attended by most royal family members of the house of Saud. Prince Khalid attained military training from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the class of 1968 grandaunts from the academy. He further pursued US Army’s Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas military studies, graduating from Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama.
Khalid also has 1980 master’s degree in political science from Auburn University under his belt crowning academic studies to equip him for full time military career service for the home country Saudi Arabia.
Khalid bin Sultan earned the name, “Father of Saudi Arabia’s Missile,” for outstanding role in negotiating the purchase of Saudi Arabia’s first guided missile by the People’s Republic of China.
Khalid’s relentless effort for the country’s air force presence in the national defense force bore fruit. This led to the establishment of Saudi Air Defense Force and his appointment as the first commander of the unit.
During Iraq invasion and occupancy of Kuwait in the Persian Gulf, the Prince was chosen as the commander of the joint Arab forces on equal rank and responsibility with the celebrated General Norman Schwarzkopf of US Army. This appointment translated to perks in promotion by King Fahd elevating Prince Khalid to the post of field marshal having proved his worth in the intervention. Khalid voluntarily retired from the military to direct his attention into business. A decade later, he was selected for the position of assistance defense minister for military affairs.
Prince Khalid’s promotion reward came complete with responsibility. Despite his ambitious plan and announcement “more than 70 percent of military equipment can be produced locally,” the Prince was replaced by Fahd bin Abdullah also a member of the royal family.
The King’s decree changed the matrix of the succession equation for Khalid to assume full defense ministry portfolio contrary to popular belief he was favorite contender to ascend to this key military position once held by his deceased father.
Khalid bin Sultan once thriving upward trend crumbled with controversy over miscalculation in stamping out dissenting voices according to King Abdullah’s orders during 2009 Yemen bombing.
Prince Khalid military career hit a snag leading to his resignation from the force, but that didn’t take away the business contacts he had made with French electronics group Thompson –CSF in 1990. His resignation only led the way to make time for The Living Oceans organization he founded in the United States in September 2000. These together with personal interests the Prince had not given time during service for the country became sources of inspiration in serving others in different ways.
He chairs the committee of Prince Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz International Prize for Water, board of trustees of Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Foundation as well as board member of trustees of the Arab Thought Foundation, Think Tank Group striving to improve relations between the Arab and the Western nations.
Khalid is the proud owner of Al-Hayat newspaper.
Khalid’s Home Life
Khalid has three children from the first marriage to his first cousin Lulua, daughter of King Fahd which was terminated by divorce in 1978. Reena, the first born in this first marriage died within four months. The other two children are Faisal and Sara born in 1973 and 1976 respectively. He remarried Abeer bint Turki bin Abdulaziz with whom he has five children: Hala, Fahd, Salman, Mishail and Abdullah.
Khalid was named Perseus winner 2012. This association of yatch owners commits time and resources to preservation and conservation of marine wildlife.
Prince Khalid is a published author of “Desert Warrior,” about his memoirs revealing the secrets behind the first Gulf War