In a January 25, 2019 op-ed for Lobe Blog, “Trump’s Middle East Policy Is All About His Base,” POMED’s Advocacy Officer Seth Binder examines U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s speech in Cairo earlier this month and the reasoning behind the Trump administration’s Middle East policy.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was expected to outline the Trump administration’s grand strategy for the Middle East in his speech at the American University of Cairo earlier this month, but he did not even lay out a coherent policy. Although Pompeo touted America as “reinvigorated” and a “force for good” in the region, President Trump has shown little interest in, let alone a broad policy vision for, this part of the world. Trump’s approach in practice has focused on reversing Obama’s policies and confronting Iran, both of which play into his largest concern: appealing to his domestic political base.

And when extraordinary situations arise—like the murder of Jamal Khashoggi—Congress must come together and pass purposeful legislation. One hundred senators have already said the crown prince was responsible. To not live up to their own calls for accountability would be an abdication of responsibility. Even though it is not able to administer policy with the nuance of the executive branch, the legislature can create the boundaries and rules for the president to execute foreign policy and ensure that it aligns with America’s interests and values…

Read the full article here.