Bigger Fish To Fry: Trump Middle East Policy

By: Sajid Mosvi

[The writer is a student of MSc International relation (IR) at National Defence University Islamabad]

Trump would radically changing U.S. policy in the Middle East. During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump regularly criticized then-President Barack Obama’s foreign policy, condemning him of destabilizing the Middle East, calling him weak and claiming to have a better understanding of foreign policy. After his victory Trump vowed “a new foreign policy that finally learns from the mistakes of the past,” But into Trump’s administration, it has become apparent that this “new foreign policy” is simply a more brutal version of Obama’s. when it comes to policy against which was launched by Obama in 2014 ISIS it is true he is continues to accelerate Obama legacy by fire power and ignoring civilian causalities.

In case Yemen Trump purely reflect Obama era practices when Saudi led coalition start air strike in 2015 Obama administration support bombing. After two year of bloody bombing thousands have been lost their lives and 25 million human are at brink of famine. Despite of large numbers of civilian causalities Trump administration keep increasing their support by drone airstrikes and targeted raids in the most deprived Arab country. He even wants to kick the limited limitations on weapons sales Obama imposed in December.
Explaining his airstrikes against Syria, President Trump said, “I like to think of myself as a very flexible person. I don’t have to have one specific way, and if the world changes, I go the same way.” The Trump administration has indicated powerfully that it will not accept chemical attacks by the Syrian regime, which has violated the 2013 agreement that required it to hand over all its chemical weapons stocks for ruin. But it has not yet articulated its policy toward Syria or Russia and following Obama policy wait and see.
Vis-à-vis Iran trump government has been sending mixed signals making it difficult to understand its future policy. On the one hand the new administration has continued the tough anti-Iran rhetoric that Trump adopted during his election campaign. On the other hand the Trump administration has sent some signals that could be interpreted as the continuation of President Obama’s conciliatory approach toward Iran. Trump policy will clear after his visit to Saudi Arabia coming week. It is expecting that trump will fallow offensive policy vis-à-vis Iran.
Saudi Arabia may be the Trump administration’s greatest cheerleader. The Saudis were not ever happy with President Barack Obama’s schemes to Iran, and were particularly shocked when he told The Atlantic magazine that the Iranians and Saudis “need to find an effective way to share the neighborhood and institute some sort of cold peace.” The Saudis bogged down in a proxy war with Iran in neighbouring Yemen, are elated that Trump is considering an increase in assistance to repel Iranian advance from their strategic backyard. It’s a parallel story for the Saudis in neighboringshia majority Bahrain, the kingdom’s closest regional ally. Saudis accused that Iran is encouraging Shia uprising in Bahrain. Even in Lebanon, where Iran’s proxy, the Shiite Hezbollah militia, is the dominant political force, the Saudis view Trump as a potential rescuer whose emerging anti-Iranian policy could strengthen the kingdom’s replacements.
President Trump inherited significant military momentum and a painstaking battle to retake the Islamic State’s last major Iraqi stronghold, Mosul. In Iraq on one hand US and Iran is coordinating with each other as they both consider ISIS as threat and on other hand they both are on different page regarding the end game
In Iraq, Syria, and Yemen trump administration is striking without strategy. Despite his promised “new foreign policy,” Trump has, thus far away, succeeded only in making his predecessor’s strategies more deadly and indiscriminate. President Trump’s Middle East policy offers short-term fixes to generational challenges. When it comes to enduring drivers of instability, Trump has offered no vision, no plans, and little interest. Better relations with rulers may be short lived.For trump administration Middle East remains a nightmare of complexity following north korea as threat to global security. The situation stay confused ever .It is dangerous for Trump to be involved but it is more dangerous to be leave.