May 19th, 2017

Meanwhile, Trump travels

President Trump is embarking on a trip to the Middle East and Europe:

President Trump on Friday afternoon will embark on his first overseas trip, a historic eight-day journey that includes visits to the holiest sites of three major religions, an unprecedented summit with Muslim leaders and a major meeting of NATO allies.

In any president’s first foreign trip, particular symbolic importance is attached to the first country visited, and in that regard Trump will put the spotlight on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which is greeting the U.S. president with a highly choreographed red carpet welcome.

No doubt the hostile leakers will follow.

Saudi Arabia gives the appearance of being happy about it, or potentially happy:

Despite possible areas of contention with Trump in the past, the Kingdom is looking forward to the dawn of “a new beginning,” according to Riyadh’s official website for the summit — a “highly anticipated event, the first of its kind in history.”

In Trump, there are hoping for an American president more closely aligned with their priorities, especially after years of perceived neglect under the Obama administration.

There are other highlights planned:

The final and perhaps most important of these summits is the Arab Islamic-U.S. summit on Sunday, where Trump will be joined by leaders from more than 50 Muslim countries. It’s there that Trump will deliver a hotly anticipated speech on Islam and announce a new counterterror partnership.

“We’re going to have the president basically saying that this is not a war between the West and Islam, this is a war between good and evil and we all have to come together to try to attack it,” a senior administration official told ABC News.

The Saudis, of course, have historically funded and promoted the more extremist branches of Islam that have in turn spawned a great deal of the terrorism. Should be…interesting.

Much, much more about the trip at the link, as well as here.

8 Responses to “Meanwhile, Trump travels”

  1. Oldflyer Says:

    Well, I just heard that Ivanka and the son-in-law are accompanying him, including to Saudi Arabia where she will take part in “Women’s Forum”. Wonder how they will be received by the Royal Saudis. At any rate, wait to see how long before the Media calls it a gaffe.

    There are already multiple stories about them traveling on Shabbat. They did get a Rabbi’s permission.

  2. ken Says:

    “We’re going to have the president basically saying that this is not a war between the West and Islam..”

    Christ, not another one.

  3. parker Says:

    What did anyone expect would be different? Jared and Ivanka as advisors reflects djt’s “New York values”. Amd, making nice with the Saudi regime is not my cup of tea, but better than making nice with Iran.

  4. expat Says:

    I think King Salman’s son is trying to change the country, although of necessity this will be a slow pace. He seems to realize that the oil money will no longer guarantee goodies for the country in the future and that it must start making some changes. He probably has some appeal among younger people. I certainly wouldn’t want to diss him at this point.

    BTW, I saw yesterday that King Hussein has just opened a big new science and tech university in Jordan. Maybe Trump knows more about changes in some of the ME countries than we do.

  5. Bill Says:

    I think it will be good for Trump to get out of the country for awhile. Really hoping this can be a “normal” trip and not swirl with controversy #INeedABreak

  6. AesopFan Says:

    One hopes for two things.
    That Trump will bridle his mouth, as we know he can do when he wishes.
    That the Fifth-column Media will not find any hooks on which to hang their lies.

    “If the allegations against Mr. Trump made by his enemies are true, he should resign. But what should he do if they are false? How does he go on with his job of keeping the nation safe when too many of his underlings regard betraying him and U.S. national security as the highest form of patriotism? When the media will continue the witch hunt against him as long as he holds his position, in much the same fashion that the media hunted Ferguson policeman Darren Wilson, who did nothing other than his unfortunate duty when attacked by Michael Brown? What should Mr. Trump do? What should the American people do?

    Mr. Trump will be visiting Israel next week. Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu has weathered the enmity of the media and much of the Israeli “deep state” and a constant stream of accusations and investigations regarding his personal and political life. He has weathered this every single day since he first put himself forward as a candidate to lead the country in 1992.All turned out to be the mixture of the irrelevant and the false that this week’s two anonymously sourced bombshells will most surely turn out to be. Mr. Netanyahu has served as Prime Minister for more than eleven years, and Israel, thank God, has never been so prosperous or so safe.

    Trust in God, Mr. Trump, trust in the support of your family and the ordinary men and women of America who got you where you are.”

    Well, maybe not all the claims against Bibi were totally false, but he’s certainly faced a plethora of “fake news” as well as “alternative facts” in his years.

    I didn’t know this author so include his credits here.
    About the Author: Michael S. Kochin
    Michael S. Kochin
    Michael Kochin is Professor Extraordinarius of Political Science at Tel Aviv University. He received his A.B. in mathematics from Harvard and his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago. He has held visiting appointments at Yale, Princeton, Toronto, Claremont McKenna College, and the Catholic University of America. He has written widely on the comparative analysis of institutions, political thought, politics and literature, and political rhetoric.

  7. AesopFan Says:

    On all things Israel, Caroline Glick is indispensable.

    (after detailing the news we all know by now)

    “Now who are these leakers? According to the Washington Post, the leakers are members of the US intelligence community and former members of the US intelligence community, (the latter, presumably were political appointees in senior intelligence positions during the Obama administration who resigned when Trump came into office).

    Israel is no stranger to this sort of operation. Throughout the Obama administration, US officials illegally leaked top secret information about Israeli operations to the media.”

    (then follows a list of Obama’s derelictions, which most of us also already know of)
    “In all of these cases, the goal of the leak was to harm Israel.

    In contrast, the goal of this week’s leaks was to harm Trump. Israel was collateral damage.

    The key point is that the leaks are coming from the same places in both cases.

    All of them are members of the US intelligence community with exceedingly high security clearances. And all of them willingly committed felony offenses when they shared top secret information with reporters.

    That is, all of them believe that it is perfectly all right to make political use of intelligence to advance a political goal. In the case of the anti-Israel leaks under Obama, their purpose was to prevent Israel from degrading Iran’s nuclear capacity and military power at a time that Obama was working to empower Iran at Israel’s expense.

    In the case of the Trump-Lavrov leak, the purpose was to undermine Israel’s security as a means of harming Trump politically.

    What happened to the US intelligence community? How did its members come to believe that they have the right to abuse the knowledge they gained as intelligence officers in order to advance a partisan agenda? As former CIA station chief Scott Uehlinger explained in an article published in March in The Hill, the Obama administration oversaw a program of deliberate politicization of the US intelligence community.

    The first major step toward this end was initiated by then-US attorney general Eric Holder in August 2009.

    Holder announced then that he intended to appoint a special counsel to investigate claims that CIA officers tortured terrorists while interrogating them.

    The purpose of Holder’s announcement wasn’t to secure indictments. The points was to transform the CIA politically and culturally.

    And it worked.

    Shortly after Holder’s announcement, an exodus began of the CIA’s best operations officers. Men and women with years of experience operating in enemy territory resigned.

    Uehlinger’s article related that during the Obama years, intelligence officers were required to abide by strict rules of political correctness.

    In his words, “In this PC world, all diversity is embraced – except diversity of thought. Federal workers have been partisan for years, but combined with the rigid Obama PC mindset, it has created a Frankenstein of politicization that has never been seen before.”

    Over the years, US intelligence officers at all levels have come to view themselves as soldiers in an army with its own agenda – which largely overlapped Obama’s.
    [NOTE: and a lot of them started with a Dem/Left predisposition as well]

    Trump’s agenda on the other hand is viewed as anathema by members of this powerful group. Likewise, the notion of a strong Israel capable of defending its interests without American help and permission is more dangerous than the notion of Iran armed with nuclear weapons.

    Given these convictions, it is no surprise that unnamed intelligence sources are leaking a tsunami of selective and deceptive intelligence against Trump and his advisers.

    The sense of entitlement that prevails in the intelligence community was on prominent display in an astounding interview that Evelyn Farkas, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense, gave to MSNBS in early March.”

    (I remember the Farkas interview, only briefly reported and now dropped down the memory hole of the MSM.)
    “Farkas then explained that the constant leaks of Trump’s actions to the media were part of the initiative that she had urged her counterparts to undertake.

    And Farkas was proud of what her colleagues had done and were doing.”
    (she brings us up to date on the current scandals)
    “It is too early to judge how Mueller will conduct his investigation. But if the past is any guide, he is liable to keep the investigation going indefinitely, paralyzing Trump’s ability to conduct foreign policy in relation to Russia and a host of other issues.

    This then brings us to Trump and Israel – the twin targets of the US intelligence community’s felonious and injurious leaks.

    The fact that Trump will be coming to Israel next week may be a bit of fortuitous timing. Given the stakes involved for Trump, for Israel and for US national security, perhaps Trump and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can develop a method of fighting this cabal of faceless, lawless foes together.

    How such a fight would look and what it would involve is not immediately apparent and anyways should never be openly discussed. But the fact is that working together, Israel and Trump may accomplish more than either can accomplish on their own. And with so much hanging in the balance, it makes sense to at least try.”

  8. Mike K Says:

    Benjamin Netanyahu has weathered the enmity of the media and much of the Israeli “deep state” and a constant stream of accusations and investigations regarding his personal and political life.

    Netanyahu was targeted as he took Israel from a weak Socialist economy to a powerful Capitalist economy. The Left will never forgive that.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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