“I’ll go with definition number two, Lesley.”
Even as of mid-2017, reporters were pointing Trump had some serious “conflicts of interests” in his dealings with Saudi Arabia. They pointed out that wealthy Saudis have bailed him out of bankruptcy, at least twice.
In other words, Trump owes them — ‘Big time’.
TRUMP’S CONFLICTS OF INTEREST IN SAUDI ARABIA
Deals before diplomacy
President Donald Trump’s early entanglements with Saudi Arabia largely consisted of wealthy Saudis buying his assets on the cheap as he veered time and again into bankruptcy. In 1991, Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal purchased Trump’s yacht, Trump Princess, after Trump was forced to surrender it to creditors because he was roughly $900 million in debt. Talal’s purchase provided Trump “with desperately needed cash” at the time, according to Newsweek. In 1995, Trump’s lenders pressured him to sell the Plaza Hotel in New York City, which Talal purchased for $325 million, $65 million less than what Trump paid for it in 1988. Over the years, Trump and Talal have exchanged Twitter jabs at one another. In one such exchange, the Saudi prince highlighted how he twice bailed Trump out, this coming after Trump retweeted an apparently Photoshopped image of Talal with television journalist Megyn Kelly, claiming the prince was a co-owner of Fox News.
As has been the pattern with Trump’s conflicts in other countries, he seemed to suddenly shift his policies toward Saudi Arabia as soon as his business interests were at stake. Speaking at a 2015 campaign rally in Alabama on the same day that he formed four of the Jeddah companies, Trump said: “Saudi Arabia, I get along great with all of them. They buy apartments from me. They spend $40 million, $50 million. Am I supposed to dislike them? I like them very much.” Similarly, during a January 2016 Fox News interview, Trump stated in reference to any potential future Iranian incursion in the region, “I would want to protect Saudi Arabia. But Saudi Arabia is going to have to help us economically.”
Saudi Arabia, like every other country where Trump has business interests, was exempted when the president signed an executive order suspending entry to the United States for citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries—Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen—as a means to thwart terrorist attacks. Notably, Saudi Arabia was not included—despite the fact that 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks and Osama bin Laden himself were all Saudis and despite the fact that Saudi Arabia has frequently funded extremism and has been a large source of foreign fighters for the Islamic State.
There’s more to the Trump Co. (and Jared Co.) historic dependence on deep pockets Saudi
exhorters “benefactors” in the above article (and in my detailed postfrom a few days ago).
And what does Saudi Royalty get in exchange for their “bought and paid-for” mouth piece in the White House?
An echo chamber for their fabricated cover stories, and a compliant parrot for their unproven denials:
“It sounded to me like maybe these could be rogue killers, who knows?” he said. The president also said King Salman “flatly denied” any knowledge of Khashoggi’s disappearance.
“The denial from the Saudi King was very strong.” Trump also said.
Where have we heard this before?
Everyone knows “strongman killers” and “democracy hijackers” — are brutally honestwhen asked a direct question by Trump.
“Everybody knows this.”
Because Killers and autocratic Dictators
— never lie. Never.