Biden fumbles and mumbles through his 4-day visit to Israel, Saudi Arabia.
Joe Biden’s first visit to the Middle East as president ended in a fiasco, with him betraying signs of mental decline and failing to achieve any of his declared diplomatic aims.
The four-day visit to Israel and Saudi Arabia, which ended on Friday, was such a disaster that even the loyalist mainstream media outlets are having a tough time giving it a positive spin.
While President Donald Trump’s visit to the region in 2017 resulted in the historic Abraham Accords between Israel and the Arab states, and billions of dollars worth of defense deals, the current president has returned empty handed. The Arab oil producing states declined Biden’s request to boost oil production. He also failed to forge a regional defense alliance to counter growing Iranian aggression in the Middle East.
The Reuters reported Biden’s failed Middle East trip:
President Joe Biden told Arab leaders on Saturday that the United States would remain an active partner in the Middle East, but he failed to secure commitments to a regional security axis that would include Israel or an immediate oil output rise. (…)
Biden, who began his first trip to the Middle East as president with a visit to Israel, presented his vision and strategy for America’s engagement in the Middle East at an Arab summit in Jeddah.
The summit communique was vague, however, and Saudi Arabia, Washington’s most important Arab ally, poured cold water on U.S. hopes the summit could help lay the groundwork for a regional security alliance – including Israel – to combat Iranian threats. (…)
“We believe there’s great value in including as many of the capabilities in this region as possible and certainly Israel has significant air and missile defence capabilities, as they need to. But we’re having these discussions bilaterally with these nations,” a senior administration official told reporters.
A plan to connect air defence systems could be a hard sell for Arab states that have no ties with Israel and balk at being part of an alliance seen as against Iran, which has a strong regional network of proxies including Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, said he was not aware of any discussions on a Gulf-Israeli defence alliance and that the kingdom was not involved in such talks. [Emphasis mine]
As the visit progressed, the frequency of Biden’s gaffes increased, causing distress to his hosts and embarrassment to his country. The visiting U.S. president could be seen struggling to stay focused during the meetings and repeatedly blundering through in his speeches.
Never in history has a US President said a more hostile and disgusting lie about the Jewish State of Israel. https://t.co/IYEWCqJDbN
— Caroline Glick (@CarolineGlick) July 17, 2022
JOE BIDEN in Saudi Arabia: "We'll always honor the bravery and selfishness — selflessness — of the and sacrifices of the Americans who served" pic.twitter.com/5I8LhuhN2B
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) July 16, 2022
Biden Makes Embellishing Claims, Saudis Rebuff
If official Saudi accounts are to be believed, Biden is embellishing his train-wreck visit with bold claims of achievements and breakthroughs.
After meeting Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Biden claimed that he took the Saudi leader to task over his alleged involvement in the murder of a journalist inside the Saudi consulate in Turkey.
The Washington Post reported the president’s account:
President Biden said he confronted Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman directly Friday about the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, telling him in a “straightforward and direct” way that the killing was unacceptable and “making clear what I thought of it at the time and what I think of it now.”
The Saudi foreign minister, present at the meeting, rebuffed Biden’s claims saying nothing of this sort was discussed.
Fox News reported the Saudi minister’s response:
[…] Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia Adel al-Jubeir told Fox News’ Alex Hogan Biden never addressed Khashoggi’s murder during the visit.
“I didn’t hear that particular phrase,” al-Jubeir said. “The President mentioned that the US is committed to human rights because since the founding fathers wrote the constitution and he also made the point that American presidents — this is part of the agenda of every American president.”
Biden also declared that he convinced the Saudis to open their skies to Israeli airliners.
Saudi Arabia allowing direct flights from Israel was “a big deal, not only symbolically but substantively,” Biden told reporters on Friday after his meeting with the Saudi leadership.
“This is the first tangible step on the path of what I hope will eventually be a broader normalization of relations,” he rejoiced.
The Saudi government also dismissed those claims made by Biden. The Times of Israel reported:
Contradicting the departing US President Joe Biden, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said Saturday that Riyadh’s decision to open its airspace for all civilian overflights had “nothing to do with diplomatic ties with Israel” and was “not in any way precursor to any further steps” toward normalization.
Prince Faisal appeared determined to pour cold water over the declared expectations in Jerusalem and Washington that the kingdom’s decision, announced Thursday, to open its airspace to all civilian carriers — a move that will enable flights to and from Israel to China and India through far shorter and less costly routes — marked a first step toward formal relations with Israel.
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.