If you can't lick 'em, buy 'em. In this case it's the kingdom of Saudi Arabia which, unable to dent the Iranians' U.S.-made tanks, opts instead to gain control of General Motors with billions of their oil dollars. The man chosen to engineer the ""financial coup of the century"" is Thompson Caldwell's own John Haddad, an ambitious young investment banker of Syrian descent. Naturally the transaction encounters stiff, patriotic resistance in the form of the GM Chairman, the UAW and the president. Haddad himself is blackmailed (by a Swiss banker facing bankruptcy), intimidated (by union goons) and bedded by Iran's top female agent (Lila) before he's able to extricate himself from his client's petropolitical sticky wicket. Tender offers, short sales.