gulftoday.ae | Michael Jansen: Adding to Palestinian woes

The Trump administration’s regional policy is based on business-style deal-making that could undermine the stability of this region… The first involves cultivating and maintaining an atmosphere of treat and instability to promote the purchase of arms. This effort has been spearheaded by Donald Trump himself, the world’s most aggressive arms dealer, who has been joined by the leaders of Britain, France, Russia, Germany, China and minor exporters.

US arms exports rose by 25 per cent in 2017, the first year of the Trump administration. Total US exports amount to $1.5 trillion, of which $42 billion is in arms, a relatively modest sum. However, weapons manufacturers are important political players on the US domestic scene. Trump wants to keep them sweet to secure backing for his 2020 re-election bid.

US arms exports amount to one-third of the global arms trade, half are delivered to this region. Saudi Arabia consumes the second largest share of arms globally, India is first. Egypt is second in the region and the UAE third.

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