Conservative Outlets Don't Seem Bothered by Trump "Bowing" to Saudi King

Conservative Outlets Don't Seem Bothered by Trump

Reinforcing his theme of U.S. economic deals, Trump told Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani they would discuss "lots of handsome military equipment because nobody makes it like the United States".

This isn't the first time that concerns have been raised over whether Trump's actions make him a national security threat.

But Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of most of the 9/11 hijackers, has never been on the list.

Furthermore, the two nations plan to form a Strategic Joint Consultative Group, hosted by The President of the United States of America and The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques The King of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, or their appropriate designees, to chart the course of this strategic partnership.

Last year, Trump slammed the Clinton Foundation for accepting millions of dollars from a country that abuses women and is intolerant of members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

The First Lady and President Donald Trump's oldest daughter opted not to wear headscarves in in the religious country that enforces a strict dress code on its women, who are expected to be fully covered from head to toe when out in public.

It was a notable contrast from President Obama's last visit to the kingdom, when King Salman delegated the task of greeting the president to a distant nephew, a provincial governor, amid tensions between the two countries over the Iran nuclear deal.

But as Mr Trump was flying in, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir told the BBC, "we can't see it biased against any group or religion".

Trump's decision to make his first official trip overseas to Saudi Arabia, followed by Israel, countries which both share his antagonism towards Iran, marks a contrast with Obama's approach. White House aides view the address as a counter to Obama's 2009 speech to the Muslim world, which Trump criticized as too apologetic for US actions in the region. As he stated during the campaign, the United States will "finally have a coherent foreign policy based upon American interests and the shared interests of our allies" should he become president. "Prioritizing American interests means strengthening alliances and partnerships that help us extend our influence and improve the security of the American people". Escaping Washington for the embrace of the Saudi royal family appeared to give Trump a boost.

Then the White House announced arms deals worth approximately $147 billion - almost $US110 billion - and King Salman tweeted that the visit would, "strengthen our strategic cooperation, lead to global security and stability". The package includes tanks, combat ships, missile defense systems, radar and communications and cybersecurity technology.

He is also expected to give a speech later on Sunday on the Islamic faith during a US-Arab Islamic Summit with almost 50 other Muslim-majority country leaders.

Trump dodged one potential land mine when Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who has been indicted on war crime and genocide charges, announced that he would not attend the summit for personal reasons.

Trump and the leaders will establish a centre aimed at cracking down on the ability of Islamic militants to spread their message. White House aides view the address as a counter to Obama's 2009 speech to the Muslim world, which Trump criticized as too apologetic for USA actions in the region.

According to a draft obtained by the Associated Press, Trump will abandon some of the harsher anti-Muslim rhetoric of the political campaign, describing the war against terrorism as a "battle between good and evil" but "not a battle between different faiths, different sects or different civilizations". It notably refrains from mentioning democracy and human rights, topics Arab leaders often view as United States moralising, in favour of the more limited goals of peace and stability.