, 10 tweets, 4 min read Read on Twitter
[Thread] Trump’s blank check approach to the Saudis was sold as a hard-nosed approach to a tough region, or as Pompeo put it, allowing the Saudis to be a “powerful force for stability in the Middle East.”
But in giving the Saudis an unconditional embrace, we’ve enabled and created the conditions to make the region more unstable, not less.
Let’s take a closer look at what America is really getting out of Trump’s approach to the Saudis and the Gulf:
1. Deeper complicity in the war in Yemen, the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Trump has doubled down on support for the Saudis’ disastrous war, selling missiles, bombs, and precision-guided munitions to fuel the conflict, all while bypassing Congress.

2. Access to advanced U.S. weapons systems. Trump is letting the Saudis manufacture their own high-tech American bombs, advanced weapons systems that have long been protected national security secrets. (And, by the way, at the cost of American jobs.)
3. Access to nuclear technology. Trump approved transfer of U.S. technology to Saudi Arabia seven times — without safeguards to prevent a potential nuclear arms race in the Middle East. Two transfers occurred *after* the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.
4. Purchase of Chinese missiles. Saudi Arabia has turned to China to dramatically advance its ballistic missile program, threatening stability and U.S. national security interests in the Middle East — and Trump reportedly sought to hide this from Congress.
5. Increased risks to our troops. Adopting the Gulf regional playbook has pushed the U.S. to the brink of war with Iran, placing our sailors and soldiers in harm’s way - even as Trump has turned away from an Iran nuclear deal that made us safer.
6. Massacres of peaceful protesters in Sudan. Trump’s closest allies - Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E. and Egypt - are all backing the Sudanese military as it cracks down on peaceful protesters, enabling a massacre and thwarting a potential democratic transition.
7. Instability in Libya. Thanks to lobbying by Saudi and the U.A.E., Trump backed a military assault by Libyan warlord Khalifa Haftar on Tripoli, even after his own State Department and Pentagon opposed it.

There is a much we still don't know about the motivations for Trump's hands-off approach to the Saudis. What we do know is that Trump's foreign policy in the region is fueling instability and abuse, taking unnecessary risks, and leaving us less safe.

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