US President Donald Trump has been accused of siding with the Saudis again, over America’s national interest. He appears to do literally anything to save America’s relations with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, even defend its abuse of human rights. Recently, the Republican staff released a report citing that there was ‘no impropriety’ by Trump administration in proposing nuclear energy technology to Saudi. However, this isn’t the first time that the President has claimed something of this sort, in the defence of the Kingdom. For instance, in the past, Trump has defended allied gulf nation Saudi Arabia’s role in the murder of a notable Washington Post journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, which is said to have taken place on the orders of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman – a good friend of the President.
The President has also defended US’ globally criticised arms trade with the Saudi government and the latter’s war on humanity in Yemen using the same. The President has unabashedly done it all, and for what – to secure weapons deals worth billions of dollars and 569,000 barrels per day of crude oil import (as of April 2019).
Now, the American leader is blatantly unapologetic about proposing the handing over of nuclear energy technology to the gulf nation, despite its poor human rights records and a haunting past it shares with the US. After 18 years of al-Qaeda bombing the hell out of America in the dreadful – attacks of 9/11 // attacks of September 11 // September 11 attacks – Trump is all set to equip the birthplace of Osama bin Laden with US’ nuclear technology.
Nuclear Deal or No Nuclear Deal?
According to a recent report by the Republican staff of the House Oversight Committee, the Trump administration claims to have committed no mistake by awarding Saudi Arabia its nuclear technology. Whereas, the Democrats claim that the Republican party may have ‘broken multiple federal laws and guidelines’ in their numerous transfers of nuclear technology to the gulf monarchy and may have “rushed” the decision.
Last month, Senator Tim Kaine – a Democrat from Virginia – claimed that the US leader approved two of the many nuclear transfers to Saudi Arabia, soon after the shocking Khashoggi murder took place in October. Even though US’ intelligence community was certain that the orders had been given by none other than Trump’s friend and Saudi’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman; the President didn’t think twice before defending him.
Kaine, citing the records of the Department of Energy, claimed that Trump has authorized seven such transfers of the US nuclear technology till date.
A Democratic report that surfaced in February also stated, the administration sought to “rush the transfer of highly sensitive U.S. nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia in violation of the Atomic Energy Act and without review by Congress as required by law.”
However, according to GOP’s report, IP3 International – a firm constituting of ex-U.S. national security officials who encouraged the plan to get nuclear power plants built in Saudi – had kept the Congress in alignment. IP3 “briefed Democrat and Republican Members of Congress about the civilian nuclear energy possibilities in the Middle East in 2017 and 2018,” read the report. And added that “documents suggest that IP3 arranged a White House meeting with nuclear energy company executives in February 2019.” (Republicans-oversight.house.gov)
Overlooking international condemnation and blinded by the ‘bright’ business prospects envisioned in US’ billions of dollars’ worth of arms deal with Saudi Arabia, Trump has again put America’s national interest, security and reputation at stake.
In his stubbornness to not lose to Russia and China, by letting Saudi Arabia slip out of his hands, Trump has been aggressively giving into the Kingdom’s demands. In the past, at a press conference held at the White House concerning the Khashoggi murder investigation, the President said “I would not be in favor of stopping a country (Saudi) from spending $110bn – which is an all-time record – and letting Russia have that money, and letting China have that money.”.
However, in doing so, not only is Donald Trump putting at stake the national security of his own country, but also of those already ravaged in the MENA region, besieged by Saudi Arabia and its notorious gulf accomplice – the United Arab Emirates.
Since the traumatizing 9/11 attacks that shook and shattered the United States from within, the Islamic terror group, al-Qaeda, has exponentially expanded its roots across the globe. Thanks to the Saudis and its friends like the UAE, for harbouring them and arming them with US weapons. Despite which the US supports and continues an arms deal, challenged by the Republican-controlled Senate. These are the same monarchies, which have, time and again, violated trade agreement with US by supplying American weaponry and secrets meant for them, to militias and members of al-Qaeda. As a result of which, the US became an equal accomplice of the gulf monarchies and a subject of international backlash in their reckless, deathly wars waged across the gulf region. One of which turned into the world’s largest manmade humanitarian crisis over the years.
In the end, Americans should consider themselves fortunate to be able to witness this all before the 2020 US presidential election.