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Peace and Prosperity

President Trump’s Support of Saudi Arabia is Par for the Course in US Foreign Policy


Many people are condemning President Donald Trump’s continuing support for the Saudi Arabia government and its Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman. Critics note the killing of Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, the Saudi-led war on Yemen, and widespread rights abuses in Saudi Arabia as reasons to oppose the Trump administration’s support for the Saudi government and bin Salman.

Yet, as Glenn Greenwald explains in an intriguing Wednesday The Intercept editorial, Trump’s commitment to Saudi Arabia is in line with a long history of United States presidential administrations, both Republican and Democrat, supporting governments around the world — including the Saudi Arabia government — that have been doing horrible things, while basing that support, including the providing of military and intelligence assistance, on nebulous claims of “national security.”

The problem exhibited by Trump in this instance is nothing new. It is engrained in how US politics has worked for decades. Referring in particular to Trump’s Tuesday written declaration of the Trump administration’s continuing support for Saudi Arabia, which has been the subject of much backlash, Greenwald writes that the declaration is “a perfect example — perhaps stated a little more bluntly and candidly than usual — of how the U.S. has conducted itself in the world since at least the end of World War II” instead of the “deviation from, a grievous violation of, long-standing U.S. values and foreign policy” that it has been painted as by some critics, including many who have helped advance the US governments relentless pursuit of destructive intervention overseas.

Read here Greenwald’s editorial that also includes informative examples from the last few decades of US intervention overseas. The examples illustrate that, while Trump’s support for Saudi Arabia is wretched, it is also par for the course in US foreign policy.
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