Excerpt: There is no question that Trump is unusually protective of the Saudi government even for a U.S. president, but I’m not sure that it is as inexplicable as all that. Like other anti-Muslim figures in his party, the president has a special regard for the Saudis because they are as anti-Iranian as he is. Perhaps more important for Trump is the fact that his son-in-law has cultivated a relationship with the Saudi crown prince. It was no accident that Trump’s first foreign trip as president was to Riyadh. Kushner was instrumental in persuading Trump to go there. Trump’s reflexive backing for the blockade of Qatar shortly after that visit was another result. The connection between the two princelings likely accounts for a significant part of U.S. foreign policy during the first three years of Trump’s presidency.
We should assume that the extensive pro-Saudi and pro-Emirati lobbying efforts that have been working overtime in Washington during this same period have contributed to the president’s almost comical subservience to the interests of these client states…
We are daily becoming aware of the extent of the administration’s corruption, and we still do not fully know the role of foreign money and influence from these countries in shaping the administration’s policies. If a president consistently puts the interests of another government ahead of American interests, there is probably something else going on beyond extremely bad foreign policy judgment. Trump’s absurd pro-Saudi bias is not inexplicable, but it is still in need of a fuller explanation. The rest of the answer is more likely found in lobbying and the president’s family and business ties. Whatever the full explanation turns out to be, the ever-closer embrace of the Saudis has been a disaster for U.S. foreign policy, the people of Yemen, and the stability of the region.
Here are a few of the comments on the Daniel Larson blog:
Bumbershoot: This Business Insider headline makes a nice point: “Trump said he has ‘no financial interests in Saudi Arabia.’ But his businesses have made millions from the Saudi government, and the crown prince gave his New York City hotel a huge boost.” Gee, I wonder why he likes Saudi Arabia so much?
TheSnark: Follow the money. Except that it is hard to do as Trump refuses to release his tax returns or any business records.
Me: Trump’s political agenda is “Make Trump Great Again”. Without a doubt, Trump’s primary motivation is money. He’s undoubtedly dreaming on Trump Tower Riyadh–yesterday, today and tomorrow. I’m 110% positive there will be one in the near future (…along with Trump Tower Moscow). The fact that the Saudi’s are anti-Iran is a bonus to Trump supporting neocons: a fringe benefit for prostituting themselves so.
SidFinster: The *really* funny and ironic part is that if they want evidence that Trump is working on behalf of foreign governments, there is loads of evidence out there in plain sight. He doesn’t even try to hide it. You need look no further than Israel and Saudi Arabia.
It’s as if Melania were trying to catch Donald cheating with Vladimir at the office across the street. Because the known facts don’t support her theory, Melania comes up with an absurdly elaborate and bizarre plot involving multiple body doubles, fake credit card receipts issued by a non-existent bank, the Polish Mafia, and a supposed secret Twitter code that Donald uses to communicate with his alleged lover. Also, to make it work, not only does everyone from Barron to Mike Pence’s dog have to know about this scheme, they are assisting in the coverup.
Melania works herself into a lather “connecting the dots” concocting a conspiracy theory that would put the 1961 John Birch Society to shame, and ignoring all the evidence that obliterates her theory.
Meanwhile, if she wants to see Donald being unfaithful, Mistress Bibi and Mistress Salman have the chains and whips and bondage gear on full display as they make Donald perform the most obscene and humiliating sexual services, all right out there on her own kitchen table in front of Melania and everyone else, and with video footage to boot.
Reid: As others have mentioned, it’s mostly about money, without a doubt. But let’s not forget the other important thing to Trump: you can be sure that they flatter him and know how to work him.