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Trump tells Middle East to 'drive out' Islamist extremists


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Trump tells Middle East to 'drive out' Islamist extremists

By Steve Holland and Jeff Mason

Reuters

 

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U.S. President Donald Trump delivers a speech during Arab-Islamic-American Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia May 21, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

 

RIYADH (Reuters) - President Donald Trump urged Arab and Islamic leaders on Sunday to unite and do their share to defeat Islamist extremists, making an impassioned plea to "drive out" terrorists while toning down his own harsh rhetoric about Muslims.

 

Trump singled out Iran as a key source of funding and support for militant groups. His words aligned with the views of his Saudi Arabian hosts and sent a tough message to Tehran the day after Hassan Rouhani won a second term as Iran's president.

 

The U.S. president did not use his signature term "radical Islamic terrorism" in the speech, a signal that he heeded advice to employ a more moderate tone in the region after using the phrase repeatedly as a presidential candidate.

 

"Terrorism has spread all across the world. But the path to peace begins right here, on this ancient soil, in this sacred land," Trump told leaders from about 50 Muslim-majority countries representing more than a billion people.

 

"A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and drive out the extremists. Drive them out! Drive them out of your places of worship, drive them out of your communities, drive them out of your holy land and drive them out of this earth."

 

The president's first speech abroad provided an opportunity to show his strength and resolve, in contrast to his struggle to contain a mushrooming scandal at home after his firing of former FBI Director James Comey nearly two weeks ago.

 

He portrayed the conflict as one between good and evil, not between civilizations, and made clear in a forceful tone that Washington would partner with the Middle East but expected more action in return.

 

"There is still much work to be done. That means honestly confronting the crisis of Islamic extremism, and the Islamists, and Islamic terror of all kinds," he said in his speech.

 

The advance excerpts of the speech had him saying "Islamist extremism." A White House official blamed Trump's fatigue for the switch. "Just an exhausted guy," she told reporters.

 

The term "Islamist extremism" refers to Islamism as a political movement rather than Islam as a religion, a distinction that the Republican president had frequently criticized the administration of his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama, for making.

 

As a candidate, Trump proposed temporarily banning Muslims from entering the United States. In office, he ordered temporary bans on people from several Muslim-majority countries, which have been blocked by courts that ruled they were discriminatory.

 

The speech in a gilded hall bedecked with chandeliers is part of an effort to redefine his relationship with the Muslim world.

Trump's "America first" philosophy helped him win the 2016 election and has rattled allies who depend on U.S. support for their defence.

 

Trump received a warm welcome from Arab leaders, who set aside his campaign rhetoric and focussed on his desire to crack down on Iran's influence in the region, a commitment they found wanting in Obama.

 

"For decades, Iran has fuelled the fires of sectarian conflict and terror," Trump said. "It is a government that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing the destruction of Israel, death to America, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this very room."

 

Trump did not make overt mentions of human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia or the other Gulf nations in his speech. White House officials has said he did not want to lecture, something they believe Obama did, unsuccessfully.

 

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif fired back at Trump in a tweet that Trump had attacked Iran in "that bastion of democracy & moderation" of Saudi Arabia and suggested he had "milked" his hosts for hundreds of billions of dollars in business deals.

 

JOINT FIGHT, ROYAL WELCOME

 

Introducing Trump, Saudi King Salman described their mutual foe Iran as the source of terrorism they must confront together.

 

"Our responsibility before God and our people and the whole world is to stand united to fight the forces of evil and extremism wherever they are ... The Iranian regime represents the tip of the spear of global terrorism," the king said.

 

Iran is a Shi'ite Muslim country. The groups the United States has been fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on Washington and New York are mostly Sunni Muslims, and enemies of Iran. Iranian-backed militia are also fighting Islamic State militants in Iraq.

 

The United States and Gulf Arab countries announced an agreement to coordinate efforts against the financing of terrorist groups.

 

Trump's welcome in the region was put on display during a series of individual meetings with Arab leaders.

 

He praised Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, telling him: "You have done a tremendous job under trying circumstances."

 

The Obama administration had a difficult relationship with Sisi, who came to power after leading a military coup in 2013 during which hundreds of demonstrators were killed, and has since jailed thousands of opponents.

 

Trump promised to schedule a trip to Egypt soon, and he singled out the Egyptian's choice of footwear, a pair of shiny black shoes. "Love your shoes. Boy, those shoes," he said.

 

To Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa, Trump declared that the two nations had a lot in common and "there won't be strain with this administration."

 

The king lauded the relationship and said it had led to "great stability in the region and prosperity." Bahrain is home to the U.S. fleet in the Middle East. Its Sunni Muslim royal family rules over a majority Shi'ite population and was occasionally rebuked by the Obama administration for harsh treatment of opponents.

 

Trump's Riyadh visit kicked off his first presidential trip abroad, with Saudi Arabia the first stop on a nine-day journey through the Middle East and Europe.

 

Soon after Trump embarked on his trip on Friday, he was hit with more accusations that, with Comey's firing on May 9, he was trying to squelch a federal investigation into his campaign's ties with Russia last year.

 

(Editing by Mary Milliken and Peter Cooney)

 
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-- © Copyright Reuters 2017-05-22
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OP..
"A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and drive out the extremists."

 

Let's hope Trump has the same message for extremists of ALL religions when he gets to Israel, who are the root cause of the conflict there.

 

OP..
"Trump singled out Iran as a key source of funding and support for militant groups."

 

...perhaps Trump should look in the mirror, and discern that the USA selling $billions of arms to a corrupt unelected monarchy in Saudi Arabia, and propping up an illegal occupying power nearby also prolongs the conflicts in the Middle East. But when the Benjamins fly in the window, principles tend to fly out. 

 

Most observers note the hypocrisy.

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1 hour ago, webfact said:

 

Trump received a warm welcome from Arab leaders, who set aside his campaign rhetoric

If he was as thoughtful and diplomatic about what he says back at home, he would probably find himself with less detractors and a better approval rating.

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Full text of Trump's speech at URL below. be interesting to hear from the Trump supporters now that he has proclaimed Islam at one of the "Great Faiths'. How will the Rust belt supporters express their thanks in the planned Saudi investment in their region?

 

http://edition.cnn.com/2017/05/21/politics/trump-saudi-speech-transcript/

 

Wonder if Russia will modify it's policy in response to Trump's damning of Assad. 

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The has clearly lost the plot between his pre election rhetoric and hate mongering to now I love Arabs but hate terrorism and Islam is a tremendous faith.... the man is flip flopping his platforms of "I believe" anyway he sees fit for the moment, right now, Obama starting to look good compare to Trump....

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The Arab dictators gathered in the heart of radical Islamic Wahhabism love him. No doubt his kind gestures will be rewarded with back door graft payments. Better cash in quick because this act may soon be ending.

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3 hours ago, webfact said:

refers to Islamism as a political movement rather than Islam as a religion

and that is exactly what it is; islam is not a religion; it is a form of government that includes an imbedded religion

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57 minutes ago, alanrchase said:

I read a report that a Foundation set up by Ivanka has accepted a 100 million dollar donation from Saudi and the UAE. Where is the outrage from the Trump supporters?

Trump supporters should be outraged that you read a report?

Where did you read this "report"?

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Trump tells Middle East to 'drive out' Islamist extremists

 

No women drivers of course.

 

 

No head-scarf for Melania

 

Nice curtsy.

 

Loved the sword dancing. And Steve Bannon surrounded.

 

 

headscarf.jpg

bow.png

Edited by mtls2005
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10 minutes ago, alanrchase said:

 


If you are interested Google "npr saudi ivanka". Have trouble posting links.

 

Yeah. A great achievement.  Good on Ivanka!

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/05/21/529417148/saudis-and-the-uae-will-donate-100-million-to-a-fund-inspired-by-ivanka-trump

 

World Bank President Jim Young Kim "We thought it was a fantastic idea," Kim said. "But we had no idea how quickly this would build. This is really a stunning achievement. I've never seen anything come together so quickly, and I really have to say that Ivanka's leadership has been tremendous." The money will help kick off a $1 billion women's empowerment fund that the World Bank will announce in July, he said.

 

The World Bank fund, which provides technical help and investment funding for women business owners, differs from the Clinton Foundation in some significant ways. While Ivanka Trump proposed the idea along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, she is not involved with its operation.

 

Edited by kevkev1888
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Yeah. A great achievement.  Good on Ivanka!
 
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/05/21/529417148/saudis-and-the-uae-will-donate-100-million-to-a-fund-inspired-by-ivanka-trump
 
World Bank President Jim Young Kim "We thought it was a fantastic idea," Kim said. "But we had no idea how quickly this would build. This is really a stunning achievement. I've never seen anything come together so quickly, and I really have to say that Ivanka's leadership has been tremendous." The money will help kick off a $1 billion women's empowerment fund that the World Bank will announce in July, he said.
 
The World Bank fund, which provides technical help and investment funding for women business owners, differs from the Clinton Foundation in some significant ways. While Ivanka Trump proposed the idea along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, she is not involved with its operation.
 


Obviously it is not the same thing. Never is when a Trump is involved. See the post above yours for another fine example.
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35 minutes ago, alanrchase said:

Obviously it is not the same thing. Never is when a Trump is involved. See the post above yours for another fine example.

 

But it is not the same thing. Fact!

 

It is a World Bank fund, she is not involved with its operation.

 

Not an issue that I care much for, but she obviously does.

 

She proposed the idea, promoted it, and according to World Bank President Jim Young Kim "This is really a stunning achievement. I've never seen anything come together so quickly, and I really have to say that Ivanka's leadership has been tremendous."

 

Then I say, good for her.

Edited by kevkev1888
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13 hours ago, ezzra said:

The has clearly lost the plot between his pre election rhetoric and hate mongering to now I love Arabs but hate terrorism and Islam  is a tremendous faith.... the man is flip flopping his platforms of "I believe" anyway he sees fit for the moment, right now, Obama starting to look good compare to Trump....

He was only mouthing another's words......

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Trump tells Middle East to 'drive out' Islamist extremists

 

. . . while at the same time selling billions of dollars of the latest US military weapons to Saudi Arabia, the world's largest sponsor of Islamic terrorism.

 

What a jerk.

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Trump’s bizarre and un-American visit to Saudi Arabia

 

"The past four American presidents, two Republicans and two Democrats, made their first trips to either Mexico and Canada, countries that are close trading partners, close allies, compatible democracies and of course neighbors."

 

"Trump chose, instead, to make his first presidential visit to an oligarchic kleptocracy which forces women to hide their faces and forbids them to travel without a male guardian’s permission."

 

"Saudi Arabia sponsors extremist Wahabi mosques and imams all over the world; Osama bin Laden was a Saudi citizen, as were 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/global-opinions/wp/2017/05/21/trumps-bizarre-and-un-american-visit-to-saudi-arabia/?utm_term=.7c868426fe7b

 

 

Democracies? What democracies?

As long as the war machine gets it's $350 Billion deal with help from their pal in the White House.

Priorities.

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/20/us-saudi-arabia-seal-weapons-deal-worth-nearly-110-billion-as-trump-begins-visit.html

 

And the Saudis toss back $100mil, (peanuts to them) to the nepotist's daughter for her pet project.

As if their barbaric culture care's about women...

 

Shameful.

Edited by iReason
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3 hours ago, kevkev1888 said:

Yeah. A great achievement.  Good on Ivanka!

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/05/21/529417148/saudis-and-the-uae-will-donate-100-million-to-a-fund-inspired-by-ivanka-trump

 

World Bank President Jim Young Kim "We thought it was a fantastic idea," Kim said. "But we had no idea how quickly this would build. This is really a stunning achievement. I've never seen anything come together so quickly, and I really have to say that Ivanka's leadership has been tremendous." The money will help kick off a $1 billion women's empowerment fund that the World Bank will announce in July, he said.

 

The World Bank fund, which provides technical help and investment funding for women business owners, differs from the Clinton Foundation in some significant ways. While Ivanka Trump proposed the idea along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, she is not involved with its operation.

 

 

Saudi $ to Clinton Foundation: end of world

 

Saudi $ to Ivanka Fund: Noble

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'Trump singled out Iran as a key source of funding and support for militant groups. His words aligned with the views of his Saudi Arabian hosts ...'

 

Who, of course, are the paragons of all things virtuous: non-democratic, laws from the middle ages, and apparently funds on tap for the likes of AQ.

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6 hours ago, darksidedog said:

If he was as thoughtful and diplomatic about what he says back at home, he would probably find himself with less detractors and a better approval rating.

One thing about show business always play to an audience that love you. 

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This is fairly standard stuff from the US (And UK as well). Make a big show of being against "Extremism" whilst licking the boots of the Saudis, who foster the ideological base for it in their Wahabi madrassas,  then sell them arms. So easy to take the side of the majority Sunnis (Who have more of the oil of course) attacking the weaker side is absolutely classic Trump. Shia Iran does allow women to drive cars and has just had an election, unlike Saudi Arabia. When was the last time you heard of a Shia suicide bomber BTW?

Add to that western support for Al Qaeda's terrorist cousins in Syria - oops sorry, should that be the heroic "Moderate rebels", who morph into the white helmets overnight - and it is clear that the dead of 9/11 and 7/7 have been betrayed by their politicians. 

Edited by Nigel Garvie
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A big sigh of relief from the Trump camp.  The Saudi trip needed to go well and Trump sucked up to them as we all knew he would.  The USA desperately need the Saudi money and in return Trump  obliged with his toe curling statements.  "Islam is one of the worlds great faiths!"  What a kick in the teeth for all his supporters.  Of course he doesn't mean it and Trump is well known for declaring things that he doesn't believe.

 

Still I am sure the Trumpsters will try to find a way to spin this as they usually do

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3 minutes ago, dunroaming said:

A big sigh of relief from the Trump camp.  The Saudi trip needed to go well and Trump sucked up to them as we all knew he would.  The USA desperately need the Saudi money and in return Trump  obliged with his toe curling statements.  "Islam is one of the worlds great faiths!"  What a kick in the teeth for all his supporters.  Of course he doesn't mean it and Trump is well known for declaring things that he doesn't believe.

 

Still I am sure the Trumpsters will try to find a way to spin this as they usually do

 

Someone still hasn't learnt the trump doctrine….watch what he does, not what he says.

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25 minutes ago, JHolmesJr said:

 

Someone still hasn't learnt the trump doctrine….watch what he does, not what he says.

Excellent point!  So far still waiting for him to do anything he said he would do in his campaign.  Or maybe that is what you mean?  Don't listen to anything he says as he will fail to deliver and instead just watch him fail on every issue!

 

Now I understand!

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