By Peter Roff • RealClearPolitics
The relationship with Kuwait should be one of the United States’ strongest, but it is starting to fray. There’s still time to set it right, and the Kuwaiti Emir’s visit to Washington last week was a good start. Meanwhile, however, investors remain on edge, as they have been ever since officials in this Gulf state froze millions of dollars in American and international assets without any clear explanation.
Candidly, there’s a lot going on in Kuwait that’s suspect. The regime seems to be cozying up to Iran and China, officials have made remarks about Israel that are just short of incendiary, and corruption surrounding the delivery of supplies to U.S. troops stationed there has been highly disruptive. Americans, it seems to me, have the right to expect better from those whom they saved by leading an international intervention after their country was invaded by Saddam Hussein.
It seems instead that much has changed since President Donald Trump hosted Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah last year and hailed the countries’ bilateral relationship, calling it as strong as it had ever been. Indeed, the country continues to be a key regional security partner with 20,000 U.S. troops stationed there.
Recently though, officials in the Kuwaiti government seem to have gone to great lengths to offend America’s allies and get close to our adversaries. Their outspoken defense of the Palestinians inside the U.N. Security Council has undermined the White House’s effort to make peace and has caused problems for Israel. The United States was even forced to veto a Kuwaiti-drafted resolution calling for the protection of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. Continue reading
After the fall of Soviet communism, much changed globally. But we’ve been slow to catch up with at least some of those changes. For example, Bulgaria, a former Eastern Bloc country once in the Soviet orbit, is now a democratic nation with a market economy and a pro-western, pro-NATO government.
Most Americans would be surprised to learn that Bulgaria is more pro-American than some of our longstanding allies in Europe. It’s time that American policy and policymakers reflect this new reality. The U.S. must welcome Bulgaria as a meaningful partner promoting security, stability, and prosperity in a strategically challenging and important part of the world.
There are European leaders who talk openly of replacing NATO. They seem upset that America is expecting them to keep their treaty obligation to spend 2 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on defense. In stark contrast, Bulgaria’s ruling GERB Party strongly backs NATO and the United States. Bulgaria is putting its money where its mouth is — agreeing to NATO’s financial commitments. Continue reading
Remember the commentaries after 9/11 that “we should have been expecting something like this”? Some even implied that America was, in part, responsible for the attacks because of our one-sided policy toward the Muslim World, and in particular, “our support for Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land.”
Remember also, though, the news reports about the cheering and dancing in Palestinian Arab neighborhoods on 9/11? Perhaps these celebrations resembled the high-fives and other macabre gestures of glee made by some Palestinian Arabs following the kidnapping of three Jewish teenagers in Gush Etzion near the ancient Judean city of Hebron. Continue reading
U.S. Senator John Thune (R-South Dakota), Chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, today joined several of his Republican colleagues in reaffirming their support for Israel, America’s friend and ally, and its sovereign right to defend itself against Hamas: Continue reading