President Trump's Visit to Saudi Arabia
New York, (May 14th) President Donald Trump is about to embark on his first international trip as president with what some describes as a pilgrimage trip to the centers of the three major religions, his first stop planned in Saudi Arabia as known to be the center of Wahhabism which some perceive it as the source code of the Islamic State with similarities between the Saudi Arabian Kingdom namely in the implementation of the Shariaa laws from chopping heads in public, to cutting hands of thief's, to oppressing women and denying them basic rights of equality, the second leg of the trip will be to Israel and meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem and a side trip to Bethlehem to meet with the Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas and final leg of the trip will be to the Vatican and meeting with Pope Francis and finally attending the meetings of the G7 leaders in Italy.
The significance of this trip is quite huge, traditionally U.S. Presidents made their first international trips to neighboring countries such as Canada and Mexico or even to closer allies such as the United Kingdom, but never in history that the U.S. Presidents made their first trip to the Middle East!! Trump as a no ordinary president, his trip will have to be a sign of a huge return and in this case there are arms contracts worth more than 100 Billion Dollars waiting for his signature in Riyadh which represent one third of total arms sale to Saudi Arabia of more than 300 billion dollars over the next decade, these deals will make the Saudi military power second only to Israel in terms of its quantitative and qualitative aspects.
The Saudi king Salman is saving no effort into asserting his position as the leader of the Arab and Islamic world, and he has invited leaders of 56 Islamic countries to meet with President Trump in Riyadh , where Trump will meet with the King and senior Saudi government officials and separately, heads of the Gulf Cooperation Council – representing the six Gulf States. The president will also have the 56 leaders to meet with him for a session dedicated to combating extremism. Key issues will be the fight against ISIS, maritime shipping threats in the Red Sea and missile threats from Iran.
The U.S. Saudi bilateral during this visit where President Trump will discuss how to counter the threat from ISIL militants, the war in Yemen and threats of ballistic missiles and maritime shipping in the Red Sea. Also on the agenda will be a discussion on the Syrian conflict amid recent calls for "de-escalation zones" to provide safe havens for Syrian refugees. There are also expected to be talks on Iran between Trump and Saudi officials, especially as US Navy commanders have accused Tehran of jeopardizing international navigation by "harassing" warships passing through the Strait of Hormuz.
Probably the overall political objective of the trip is getting Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations in the region to stand in “unity” with Israel against Iran, as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said.