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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Recent Communication Between Trump and Saudi Leader Sparks Interest

Recent communication between former President Donald J. Trump and Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, has sparked interest and speculation regarding their discussions and the implications for U.S.-Saudi relations. Sources familiar with the conversation, who were not authorized to speak publicly, revealed that it was the first disclosed interaction between Trump and Prince Mohammed since Trump’s departure from office in January 2021.

The nature of their conversation remains undisclosed, and neither Trump’s representatives nor Saudi government officials have commented on the matter. However, the timing of their discussion is noteworthy, coinciding with the Biden administration’s efforts to navigate delicate negotiations with Saudi Arabia to foster peace in the Middle East. These negotiations aim to build on the diplomatic groundwork laid by the Trump administration, which facilitated ties between Israel and several Arab states.

President Biden’s pursuit of a trilateral megadeal, potentially involving a Saudi-Israeli peace agreement, a commitment to a two-state solution, a U.S.-Saudi defense treaty, and agreements on a civilian nuclear program in Saudi Arabia, underscores the complexities of U.S. foreign policy in the region. To ratify such a treaty, Biden would require support from two-thirds of senators, presenting a significant political challenge. Given Trump’s influence within the Republican Party, his stance on any potential deal could sway congressional Republicans.

Trump’s continued engagement with Prince Mohammed also reflects personal and business interests. During his presidency, Trump cultivated a close relationship with the Saudi leadership, prioritizing major deals, including arms sales, and defending Prince Mohammed amid international scrutiny over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Trump’s post-presidential endeavors, including business ventures and collaborations with the Saudi government, underscore the enduring nature of his ties with Saudi Arabia.

Similarly, Trump’s son-in-law and former senior adviser, Jared Kushner, has leveraged his relationship with Prince Mohammed for business opportunities. Despite internal recommendations against investing with Kushner due to his lack of experience, Prince Mohammed endorsed a multi-billion dollar deal with Kushner’s investment firm, highlighting the personal and financial connections between the two parties.

Beyond Saudi Arabia, Trump has also engaged with other foreign leaders, such as Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary. Their recent meeting at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate underscores Trump’s ongoing involvement in international affairs and his admiration for leaders like Orban, despite criticism of their policies.

Trump’s continued interactions with foreign leaders and his involvement in business ventures underscore the complex intersection of personal relationships, political influence, and economic interests in shaping U.S. foreign policy and global dynamics.

Jonathan James
Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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