Cipher Brief Expert View: Trump’s Trip: Shades of Bill Clinton

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President Donald Trump’s first overseas visit was “Trumpist” in its ambitions, ambiance, and expanse: the three monotheistic religions, NATO, EU, and G-7 gatherings; a whirlwind of cultural experiences; and “finally Make America Great Again” with commercial and arms sales, investments, and gestures. But the core of the visit was reassurance to two American-led alliance systems under stress: the Middle Eastern and NATO-European. 

The largely Sunni Arab world, Israel, and Turkey sought assurance that Trump would reverse President Barack Obama’s “pivot” away from the region, and Obama’s admonishment that Saudi Arabia had to “share” the Middle East with Iran.  The governments and people of the region also worried that candidate Trump’s strident anti-Islamic themes reflected hostility towards them. 

The Cipher Brief has become the most popular outlet for former intelligence officers; no media outlet is even a close second to The Cipher Brief in terms of the number of articles published by formers.” —Sept. 2018, Studies in Intelligence, Vol. 62

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