Here’s our latest weekly look at the editorial and news pages of the Arabic media to gauge what’s being said about the United States.
In a news conference held on March 28, Donald Trump said he wants to bring home American soldiers and rebuild the American nation. In a recent meeting of the U.S. National Security Council, Trump said the plan is to retain a military presence until ISIS is totally removed and local forces are trained. In both cases, Trump’s decision to rapidly withdraw American forces from Syria represents a significant change from the policy of the previous administration, which was to permanently retain forces on the ground.
Tehran’s Grand Bazaar closed its doors early this week for the first time since the protests that brought about the revolution in 1978-9. It’s no coincidence this happened at the same time as the chain of American pressure following Trump’s decision to withdraw from the nuclear agreement and to implement a strategy of blocking Iranian regional activity to trying to change Iran’s behavior.
Jordan is being subjected to pressures that have reached the level of extortion, according to media reports and experts, until it accepts the American peace proposal between the Palestinians and the Israelis known as the deal of the century.
Since May, there’s been talk about the al-Tanf American military base, which sits at the triangle border of Syria, Iraq and Jordan. Meanwhile, the future of southern Syria is in question and whether there’s agreement between Russia and the U.S. on the subject. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem joined the dots between the future of al-Tanf with those of Dara’ and Quneitra (both in southern Syria).
An official in the U.S. State Department warned Turkey on Tuesday that the procurement of the F-35 jets, manufactured by Lockheed Martin, is at risk if Turkey fails to cancel its plan to buy S-400 defensive missiles from Russia. In his testimony to Congress, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Wess Mitchell stated that if Turkey buys the Russian system, it will be sanctioned in line with a law signed by President Trump last summer. The sanctions law lays out punishments for companies that do businesses with Russian defense industries.
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