|Fars News Agency | May 23, 2017|
|© Fars News Agency|
TEHRAN (FNA)- After finalizing an unconscionable $350 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia, US President Donald Trump on Sunday gave a speech in Riyadh to leaders of a vast congress of Arab dictators and cut-throat autocrats in which he called on them to “drive out the terrorists and extremists" and isolate Iran.
Trump spoke of "shared interests" and added, "To the leaders and citizens of every country assembled here today, I want you to know that the United States is eager to form closer bonds of friendship, security, culture and commerce." Of the weapons sale, the largest single arms deal in American history, Trump took the world community for fools and said, “It will help the Saudi military to take a greater role in security operations."
Nonetheless, an Islamophobe president like Trump, doing the cunning job he does, should have a subliminal awareness of regional realities and of his own country’s responsibility for the destruction around him:
1) The hypocrisy of America’s support for unelected despots is not new, but Trump’s lavish praise for them, as allies against “Islamist extremism and the oppression of women,” is particularly repulsive, coming one day after Iranians staged a large turn-out in elections. He made no mention of Iran's diplomatic efforts to resolve global problems through dialogue, including its nuclear deal with the world powers that the United States defies in letter and spirit.
2) It is the irony of ironies. The little-told history of the US-Saudi "closer bonds of friendship, security, and commerce” is in fact a story of bloodletting, oil, violent fundamentalism, sectarianism, and arms. Trump ignored that Saudi Arabia is the world’s leading sponsor of terrorism and extremism. This contradiction, although responsible for a lot of human suffering, was deliberately ignored. He refused to plunge back into the limelight on this. Instead, he focused on “the purchase of lots of beautiful military equipment.”
3) When Trump said “the Saudi military should take a greater role in security operations" the world looked on in disbelief. What he really meant was the Saudi military can now kill more people in Yemen with “lots of beautiful American bombs.” In this new guise, he didn’t bother to once again accuse Saudi Arabia of “paying ISIL,” nor talk about the 28 pages of the 9/11 report, which implicated Saudi Arabia in supporting Al-Qaeda in the lead-up to the attack, let alone the one who expressed discomfort with all things about Islam and was talking about Muslim travel ban.
4) There is no need for the opportunistic Trump to “isolate” or “contain Iran.” Iran is doubtless a bastion of democracy and moderation, and not in any way responsible for the current destruction and chaos in the region. It is the US arming regional vassals – what Trump called “the good children of God” - and supporting their tyranny and evil ideology over their citizens, minorities and neighbors that fuels terrorism and sectarian conflicts.
5) Trump’s comfort with transitioning his hostility into one directed at all things Iran appeased both Israel and the Arab regimes. It was so bad that media outlets in the West had to react, complaining that he seems to be favoring Wahhabis over the mainstream Islam at this point. The US has been backing these repressive regimes and vilifying Iran for decades. Trump’s proxy war against Iran isn’t going to stop in Syria. In a sign of disregard for International Law and International Humanitarian Law, he has escalated the conflicts in a host of nations that are not related to Iran or Shiites. He has already declared, "We're having problems with the Muslims."
6) Trump went to Riyadh to “milk” Saudi Arabia of $350 billion, as put by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. The arms deal, which will see an immediate purchase of $110 billion in weapons and equipment, and will continue to grow and bring the overall figure up to $350 billion, “has President Trump throwing gasoline on a house fire and locking the door on his way out," this is what Amnesty International USA says.
Which isn’t itself a surprise. In many respects, Trump’s trip to Saudi Arabia was designed to help the Iranophobia project and overshadow the May 19 elections; control the world's greatest concentration of oil; destabilize Iraq and Syria by arming American-Saudi terror proxies; escalate the war on Yemen and keep the country as weak and impoverished as possible; and ultimately pave way for a stronger US military presence in the Persian Gulf in the direction of hostility towards Iran.
There is this time-honored tradition for American presidents as well to maintain their popularity at home by appeasing Israel. This factor comes from Christian-Zionist groups and their Saudi supporters, long an influential lobbying force in Washington. They use the alleged threats against Israel and region from Iran as a major argument for continuing large-scale US military and economic aid to Israel and/or unconscionable arms deal with Saudi Arabia.