EDITORIAL – English version

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Trumpian charm offensive on the Middle East…

Lightning reconciliation between the White House and King Salman: the new American President, just about elected, flew to Riyadh with the firm intention of repairing the damages committed by eight years of the Obama administration – only very slightly inclined to still support the Saudi theocracy that finances Islamist terror. A reconciliation concluded through impressive armament deals.

Supplying Saudi Arabia with weapons, at a moment when tensions are dangerously intensifying with its Iranian neighbour, will have been Donald Trump’s first priority. It seems that the question of human rights, of sword beheadings and of public flagellations was not brought up…

Some weeks beforehand, the butcher of Cairo was welcomed with all pomp and circumstance at the White House; nothing to be ashamed about, apparently, to flatter Abdel Fatah al-Sissi in such a way, the “President-Marshal”, who put an end to the Egyptian revolution, who overthrew the nascent democracy, filled the prisons up to the brim and adopted mass torture as a warrant of social and political peace.

Similarly, Recep Tayyip Erdogan was given all honours of the oval office. He will not leave the NATO, finally; but he expects from his sovereign to concede a few requests that would enable him to install a personal dictatorship in Ankara. Trump does not say no.

He also visited Benjamin Netanyahu… and a small “Hello!” to be polite, for a more touristic tour than political, to Bethlehem (Donald Trump refused to go to Ramallah, seat of the Palestinian authority)… a quick jump into the “Palestinian territories”, so as to balance his visit to the Holy land a little, but he did not fool the Israeli falcons, not the Arabs of Palestine who are busy preparing the birthday of a seventy-year-old catastrophe.

As if nothing had been (after a campaign that saw him say everything and nothing), Donald Trump now puts full throttle onto the Arab and Muslim world.

It is very clearly a strong return of the United States onto the middle eastern stage, and not for the better… a rupture with the policy of disengagement of his predecessor and, in some sense, the end of a process of “democratisation” on the part of the American foreign policy, partially promoted by Barack Obama, whose velleities and mistakes can nearly be regretted now.

History stutters, as always, and as another Republican once stated: “America is back!”; that one also succeeded a Democrat who had also been partisan to a foreign policy that was more respectful to the rights of people and that of the human.

After this tour of the biggest bastards of the region, the only one left to settle up with remains the nail puller of Damascus… then the picture would be complete.

 

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Pierre Piccinin da Prata

Historian and Political Scientist - Chief Editor / Rédacteur en Chef

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