Most nations have been trying to curry favor with President Trump through lavish praise, and comments presenting him as a grand departure from the Obama Administration’s policies. Saudi Arabia is looking for a more straightforward route, and it involves getting out their checkbook.
In this case, just ahead of Trump’s visit to Riyadh, the Saudi government’s sovereign wealth fund intends to announce a $40 billion “investment” in US infrastructure projects. Details are still not clear, but it appears to be related to Trump’s pledged $1 trillion infrastructure project.
Trump has been keen to push the narrative that other nations owe the US huge sums of money for the assorted wars they’ve launched, and while this isn’t explicitly that, it’s got enough of an appearance of being a payoff that he can freely spin it that way.
Of course, unspoken in all of this is that Saudi Arabia is going to want more than just to make Trump happy for $40 billion. This is likely to include myriad things over the president’s time in office, but likely one of the first uses of this newly bought leverage will be trying to kill the 9/11 lawsuits the Saudi government is facing.
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