Let’s hope Donald Trump is kowtowing before Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman because the president really believes he’s the triggerman on the $110B weapons deal that would result in the employment of thousands of Americans.
“Those are the biggest orders in the history of the country, probably the history of the world,” boasted Trump.
The reality: the $110B is “largely aspirational and years away from fruition,” according to the Oct. 17 Huffington Post.
Mohammad bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.
The alternative scenario to why is Trump licking the sandals of the 33-year-old crown prince is not a very attractive option.
What do the Saudis have on Trump?
The president moved to nip such speculation in the bud via Twitter on Oct. 15 with this message:
“For the record, I have no financial interests in Saudi Arabia (or Russia, for that matter). Any suggestion that I have is just more FAKE NEWS (of which there is plenty)!”
Trump may not have interests in Saudi Arabia, but the royal family certainly has had its tentacles into TrumpWorld.
The HuffPost reported that the Saudi royals and their allies have spent tens of millions for Trump condos and stays/events at Trump hotels.
The Royals helped Trump while he was facing personal bankruptcy in 1991 by buying his yacht and then purchasing the entire floor of one of his buildings in NYC.
More recently, the Saudis have been hosting large entourages at his hotels in NY and Chicago.
The Economist (Oct. 18) ridicules the US president as the crown prince’s “champion.” E.g., shades of former British PM Tony Blair lambasted as George W. Bush's poodle during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq.
Other than being the ringleader of OPEC, Saudi Arabia is “insignificant” from a business standpoint, noted the magazine.
The Economist’s “Schumpeter” wrote that for all its oil wealth and with the exception of the arms business, Saudi Arabia is not as important to western companies as it thinks it is.
And from a PR perspective, Schumpeter wrote that companies “have no choice but to consider the reputational risk of associating with a regime that not only may have blood on its hands in Istanbul but is also waging a war in Yemen that has caused a humanitarian crisis."
Et tu, Donald.