ARCHIVE – Former US president Donald Trump alongside the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed Bin Salam in Osaka, Japan. (Photo Credit: Kevin Lamarque via Reuters)
In an address on 19 November, former US president Donald Trump accused the Democrats of sabotaging the 2020 presidential elections, which consequently resulted in the collapse of his efforts to bring Saudi Arabia and Israel to normalize ties.
Trump was attending the Republican Jewish Coalition Annual Leadership meeting as part of his bid for the 2024 elections, where he hoped to leverage his close ties with World Jewry in his favor.
“We would have had maybe all of them, that includes Saudi Arabia, within a short time after the election,” Trump alleged, stressing that his second term at the White House would have reshaped West Asia.
His remarks come in light of a recent interview made by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, who revealed on 3 March that the kingdom does not view Israel as an enemy, but rather as a “potential ally.”
“There are many opportunities and interests that Riyadh and Tel Aviv can achieve together, but there first needs to be a solution with regards to the Palestinian issue,” the crown prince was quoted by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) as saying.
Trump then focused his speech on President Joe Biden, and the failure of his administration to expand the Abraham Accords. “They haven’t signed any of them. We could have truly had peace in the Middle East,” added Trump.
His statements were warmly welcomed with several standing ovations, and his political attack on Biden was well received, as Jewish Republicans view the Biden administration’s impact on Israel in a negative light.
“[Biden’s administration] is a very bad one … they don’t even listen to your [Israeli] leaders,” Trump addressed the attendees.
Trump proceeded to boast about being a loyal defender of Israel, who “fought for Israel and the Jewish community like no president in history.”
“Everybody in the room knows that I was proud to be the greatest friend Israel has ever had in the White House,” added the former president.
Standing ovation for President Trump at the @RJC Leadership Meeting.
"We created peace in the Middle East, something that nobody thought would even be possible to say, let alone get it done. Biden has betrayed Israel and the Jewish community and squandered our amazing success." pic.twitter.com/9fxo2mld2O
— Steven Cheung (@CaliforniaPanda) November 19, 2022
Though Trump’s plan to normalize ties between Saudi Arabia and Israel are dependent on a number of uncertain factors, Tel Aviv and Riyadh have for some years —unofficially — paved the way for cooperation between their private sectors.
Regulatory filing revealed on 4 July that the owners of the world’s largest Islamic bank, the Saudi Al-Rajhi family, has become the biggest stakeholder in an Israeli company.
The Al-Rajhi family invested in two Israeli firms with its Mithaq Capital company, and have increased their share in Otonomo Technologies Ltd. from 5.2 percent to 20.41 percent.