As President Trump hems and haws about the gruesome murder and dismemberment of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, suspicion continues to grow that he is avoiding taking a strong diplomatic stance on the assassination because he’s reluctant to upset Saudia Arabia, the monarchic regime behind the brutal killing.
Trump and his administration are fond of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who previously bragged that the president’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner was “in his pocket.” By his own admission, Trump doesn’t want to endanger a pending $110 billion arms deal with the theocratic regime.
The real problem is that the American people don’t know the extent of Trump’s financial entanglements with the Saudis, and his hotels around the world serve as open channels for dark money to flow into his personal coffers. With that in mind, his failure to directly confront the Saudis over the Khashoggi atrocity takes on a deeply corrupt tint.
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Earlier today, the president took to Twitter to insist that he has no personal financial interests in Saudia Arabia and alleged that any such claims are examples of “FAKE NEWS.” He included a random lie about Russia.
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)!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2018
Surprisingly, the Fox News Research account quickly fact-checked Trump’s claim, compiling a timeline of financial interactions between Donald Trump and the Saudis. The evidence clearly refutes Trump’s pathetic claim and tosses this recent tweet onto the growing mountain of outright lies the president has spewed at the public.
In 1991, the Fox tweet claims, Trump sold a yacht to Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin-Talal. In 2001, he sold a floor of the Trump World Tower to Saudis. In 2015, he admitted that he loved Saudis and that many of them live in Trump Tower.
Later in 2015, he said the Saudis spend forty to fifty million dollars on his apartments. Then in 2017, lobbyists from Saudi Arabia spent over a quarter of a million dollars in the Trump DC hotel.
Trump & Saudi Business:
•1991: Sold yacht to Saudi Prince
•2001: Sold 45th floor of Trump World Tower to Saudis
•Jun 2015: I love the Saudis…many in Trump Tower
•Aug 2015: "They buy apartments from me…Spend $40M-$50M"
•2017: Saudi lobbyists spent $270K at Trump DC hotel
— Fox News Research (@FoxNewsResearch) October 16, 2018
The fact that even Fox, a glorified propaganda outlet for the Trump administration, feels the need to call out his most recent lie shows just how egregious his behavior is. It seems likely that Trump is looking out for some personal financial interests by not challenging Saudi Arabia, and it’s imperative that a full investigation be launched into his dealings to uncover the truth.
In order to do that, Democrats need to take back control of Congress. The way forward is clear: vote in November.