I should apologize for the flippant analysis I gave in my last blog about Pres. Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia. Yes, it could be taken as window dressing, but then he made that speech, and it was unique, historic and extraordinary. And it was given directly to 55 leaders of Muslim countries form Riyadh in Saudi Arabia! It was the very anti-dote to the disastrous, stupid and cowardly speech that former Pres. Obama gave in Cairo in 2009. Trumps’s speech said several important things:
- The US is back in business in the Middle East and elsewhere
- We will reward our friends and punish our enemies
- Islamic terrorism is a scourge and the Arab/Muslim nations must cooperate together to help the US to destroy it
- All the three monotheistic Abrahamic religions, Islam, Christianity and Judaism must cooperate in this process
- We will annihilate the Islamic State and all similar terrorist groups (Hezbollah, Hamas, Taliban)
- Iran is the major terrorist state in the Middle East and it will be a target (no more bullshit diplomatic engagement)
The fact that Trump chose to jump into the deep end in Saudi Arabia, rather than the usual easy visits to Canada or Mexico of previous Presidents, shows that he has the balls to grab the bull by the horns. Many of us, even his supporters, have underestimated him. He is playing a tough and deep game. No wonder he won’t move the US Embassy to Jerusalem, that is one of the pieces he is deploying on the Middle Eastern chessboard. What will both sides give to either get this move or try to prevent it?
Two other main points, he is flying directly from Saudi Arabia to Israel, a previously unheard of connection. He is also exploiting the vulnerability of the Sunni Arabs to get them both to cooperate with the US in arms and other deals and to form joint ventures to combat terrorism, including the Joint Counter-Terrorism Institute in Riyadh.
What the Israeli Government will make of all this remains to be seen, some say there are certain misgivings about Trump’s renewed closeness to the Sunni Arabs. But, on the other hand, I for one have always maintained that the way to peace is between Israel and the other Arab States rather than directly between Israel and the Palestinians. The Pals are too split and too radical to actually come to terms, and the Arab States really don’t care about them. If it comes to the survival of their regimes and the clash with the Shia they will double-cross the Palestinians without blinking an eye.