Trump in the House: An Anti-Iranian Demonstration

By Fahed Khitan

تم نشره في Mon 8 May / May 2017. 11:00 PM
  • Fahed Khitan

Trump’s first extra-American tour, for the NATO Summit in Brussels and Group of Seven in Sicily, included only one Arab country, Saudi Arabia.

On the side of Saudi, Donald Trump is scheduled to visit the Vatican and Israel as well.

His choice of Saudi was anything but trivial.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is one of the region’s major players, strategically speaking, presiding the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), a strategic ally of the US.

Israel, on the other hand, has a special place in the outlook of US foreign police, and even more to Trump’s administration. Israel is more than just an ally. It is, more or less, an indivisible part of the United States.

Those two countries in the Middle East, however, despite the confliction, are the highlight of an important political, regional dynamic for Trump.

Meanwhile, it doesn’t seem that the peace process in Palestine is going to be central to Trump’s visit to Israel.

Iran, on the flipside, is, which explains his visit to Saudi Arabia, possible followed by numerous meets with Gulf leaders in Riyadh.

To the Arab Gulf, Iran is considered a direct threat. To Israel too, Iran is the number one enemy.

Notably, Trump’s crew is the most headstrong, hostile, anti-Iranian US administration in history. Since his arrival in the White House, Trump has been looking through the options available to reverse the nuclear deal with Iran.

Israel too, shares Trump his worries and aspirations.

In case reversing the deal is out of the question, Israel would love to see more sanctions come through to escalate a military confrontation, happily, if it comes to it, with Iran

The Gulf, on their part, are showing an amount of reasonability and rationalism in this regard.

During their last convention, they announced their support of the deal, while maintaining economic sanctions against Iran.

The Arab Gulf would want Iran’s influence to be contained, and the carpet swept from under their feet in Yemen and Syria.

In general, Trump realises these countries need for US support in the face of Iran, and he is seeking to establish a vast partnership by which the Gulf would cover the costs of protection and build economic alliances which benefit the US economy directly.

This is obvious from the arms deals underway, which are reflective of the development in US-Gulf relations.

The Gulf are hoping that Trump’s visit would revive the Yemen case, which has become a nightmare for many, now that the military solution has failed and political settlement has become unattainable.

The US, of course, is not going to send forces to Yemen. However, the Americans are ready to put an immense pressure on the parties involved to put an end to the situation. One which serves Gulf interests and ousts Iran from Syria.

So far, this sounds out of the question, in light of the recent developments in the Yemeni crisis, which is turning into a chronic conflict, much like Syria.

Like Syria too, division seems imminent in Yemen.

That said, Trump’s tour in the region is going to be more of an Anti-Iranian demonstration, with action plans and all cooking.

Needless to say, this will revive the US-Gulf alliance, which has suffered a lot during Obama’s second term, because of his administration’s openness to Iran. This is on top of US pressures, back then, to constitute further political reforms.

This article is an edited translation from the Arabic version, published by AlGhad.