Donald Trump is trying to change his allies’ strategy: first by abandoning the goal of regime-change across an enlarged Middle East and second, by smashing their current tool, Islamic terrorism. However this approach is forcing him to make greater concessions. One of these is a mega deal, whereby the US will sell arms to Saudi Arabia. But what does this achieve? Not much other than increasing the likelihood of war.
After visiting Saudi Arabia and Israel, President Trump, will be in Rome tomorrow. Then on 25 May he will proceed to the Nato Summit at Brussels and return to Italy for the G7 meeting at Taormina (26 May – 27 May) and will also visit the US/Nato base at Sigonella.
What is he actually hoping to achieve by this, his first visit abroad? General Mc Master, the President’s advisor on national security, explains that his President has three core objectives:
• to launch a “message of unity” to Muslims, Jews, Christians;
• to establish relations with leaders all over the world; and
• to project American power abroad.
His visit to Rome is the third stage of what is described as a “religious pilgrimage to the holy sites of the three great religions”. The “pilgrim” initiated his journey, by signing at Riyadh a 110 billion dollar agreement for the sale of US arms to Saudi Arabia. These arms will be added to those that President Obama supplied earlier on for no less than 115 billion dollars. Such weapons as well s others are deployed, in the coalition’s war under Saudi leadership, supported by the US, which is making a bloody carnage of civilian corpses in Yemen.
At the “Arab Islamic American Summit” on 21 May at Riyadh, Trump called for Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf Monarchies to make a renewed commitment to the war against terrorism. In other words, he’s asking for a commitment from those countries that have funded and armed Isis and other terrorist groups in the operations, led US/Nato. Operations falling along a continuum stretching from Libya then to Syria and finally to Iraq. In this great “battle between Good and Evil”, Trump’s list of “criminal barbarians” includes the Hezbollah and Hamas on the one hand and Isis and Al Qaeda on the other hand. Trump slams Iran, culpabizing it with instability in the Middle East, accusing it of “funding, arming and equipping terrorists and militia that are sowing destruction and chaos in the region”; of destabilizing Syria where “Assad, supported by Iran, has committed crimes for which there are no words”. A true and proper declaration of war to Iran, which cancels the agreements concluded, something hugely appreciated by Israel. The US President will be visiting Israel on 22-23 May to strengthen strategic cooperation.
And in the meanwhile, in Israeli prisons, thousands of Palestinian political prisoners have been on a hunger strike that has been going on for forty days. Trump is meeting Mahmoud Abbas to “urge the Palestinian leaders to make constructive steps towards peace”.
Carrying this “message of unity”, tomorrow in Rome, Trump will discuss with Pope Francis, “a series of questions of mutual interest”. After meeting with President Mattarella, who will confirm “Italy’s historic anchorage” to the United States, Trump will then participate in the Nato Summit at Brussels.
Here, he will support the Pentagon’s plan for Europe , that is, a US military escalation in Europe and bolstering Nato in the face of a “Russia that is rising and trying to threaten the international order under Western leadership”. A plan that Trump must execute, eating the words with which he declared that “Nato was obsolete” and his electoral pledge to open dialogue with Moscow: in actual fact, the sword of Damocles in the form of impeachment is hanging over his head, for he is being charged with conniving with the enemy.
From the Nato Summit, Trump will go to the G7 that consists of the 6 biggest Nato countries (the United States, Canada, Germany, Great Britain, France and Italy) and Japan, the principal ally of US/Nato in the Asia/Pacific region. In fact, it is in this region that the Pentagon is lining up increasing forces including nuclear ones against “an aggressive China and a Russia that has bounced back”. Finally, the US President will visit air-naval station at Sigonella which lies on the border. This is the main base for US/Nato open and covert wars in the Middle East and North Africa, presented as “projecting stability in the Mediterranean”.
Il Manifesto (Italy)