5/22/2017: M. Zuhdi Jasser, M.D. on Risk & Reward sharing his views on how the media is reacting to President Trumps speech.

5/21/2017: M. Zuhdi Jasser pens “My take on President Trump’s speech to the Riyadh Summit”

In grading the speech, I am holding President Trump accountable to the standards of his own brand of being “anti-establishment” and fearlessly speaking “truth to power”.

So with that on this speech, I give him a C.

In this landmark speech for the Presidency of Donald J. Trump, I give you some “Hits” and “Misses”. Take a breath and read my praise as well as my critique.

HITS and MISSES:

Yes, even with a crystal clear understanding of the diplomatic dance and needles he needed to thread as a guest in Saudi Arabia, there is most definitely a way an American President, the leader of the free world, can lead the world and the people these tyrants supposedly represent into the 21st century holding on to our own values at home and abroad without needing to apologize for that. Yet, President Trump sadly had to say, “we are not here to tell other people how to live, what to do who to be, or how to worship. Instead we are here to offer partnership, based on shared interests and values to pursue a better future.” I think the legions of persecuted free citizens in the streets, homes and jails of these regimes were saddened to hear that. America CAN both respect their independence, their culture and religion while ALSO holding them accountable to universal human rights.

1. HIT: Greatest sound bite and hit of the speech was “The nations of the Middle East will have to decide what kind of future they want for themselves, for their country, and frankly for their families, for their children. It’s a choice between two futures, and it is a choice America cannot make for you. A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and drive out the extremists.” Sadly and more truthfully, the hall should have then almost emptied except for Tunisia, Indonesia and a few others. Great sound bite but missed the follow through on these tyrants living off the root cause theocratic Islamist ideology that creates these global Islamist militants and their viral movements.

2. HIT: Second best hit was the call to isolate the regimes of Iran and Syria: The Iranian regime’s longest suffering victims are its own people. He poignantly said, “Iran has a rich history and culture, but the people of Iran have endured hardship and despair under their leader’s reckless pursuit of conflict and terror. Until the Iranian regime is willing to be a partner for peace, all nations of conscience must work together to isolate it, deny it, funding for terrorism, cannot do it, and pray for the day when the Iranian people have the just and righteous government they so richly deserve”. I wish he had added Syrian people in there and called for an end of the Assad regime. But without a doubt this statement was a wonderful end to the 8 years of Iranophilia at the fabricated alter of the deceptive Iranian nuclear agreement.

3. HIT: President Trump healthily rebooted the process of reestablishing unwavering American leadership with the regional governments and rebalancing the power with a long overdue tilt away from Iran in the Middle East. In fact it was wonderfully refreshing to hear him begin the process of isolating Iran.

4. Bonus HIT: Moscow cannot be happy at the strengthening of the US-Sunni axis against radical Islamists and Iran.

5. HIT: President Trump spoke positively of Muslims being 95% of the victims of terrorism and needing to lead this fight. He spoke positively of Islam as a leading religion among leading global faiths. Regardless of where anyone is on political correctness issues, all relationships of value are built on tough love. This is important.

6. HIT: Finally, finally…the end of empty, Presidential “Obama-like” apologetic rhetoric in reference to the “blame America” crowd on the Left that wants every presidential speech to begin and end with the USA asking for forgiveness in looking out for its own interests while advancing freedom and liberty and universal human rights abroad. It is beyond refreshing to see an end to that self-flagelating manifestation of American weakness and appeasement vis-a-vie apologies for what America does and has done. We often sacrifice our blood and resources for other nations while these tyrants sit on their hands and actually radicalize their own peoples.

7. MISS: (speaking to the people) President Trump spoke to the corporate Islamist dictators as if they represented Islam, Muslims and the people of their nations. They do not. After he set the stage on the above and called for an official gathering of a new coalition against ISIS and radical Islamists, he should have paused and then spoken directly to the aspiring people of these nations. He missed the opportunity to speak to the people of these Muslim majority nations who are now roiling in a nascent Arab Awakening and striving for revolutions and freedom against these very tyrants. He should have spoken past these tyrants whose ideology, Islamism, theocracy, tyranny and corrupt governance is THE primary cause of radicalization within their nations. After giving them hundreds of billions in arms deals and lip service, he had the credibility to be directive. He missed an opportunity to put all these dictators on notice that, yes, in the short term we will work with you against the chaos of radical Islam, but you must begin to own up to what your theocratic sharia states do in creating these radical Islamist movements. This was a big miss and will need to be inserted ASAP into any hope for a successful long term Trump Doctrine. I was very disappointed that the words freedom, democracy, and liberation were not used in his speech. It was as if the Arab Awakening had never happened. For all practical purposes this speech could have been give in the 20th century by any of our Republican establishment Presidents. Ushering in a new era of defeating both the viral radical Islamists and the corporate governmental Islamists was missed.

8. MISS: (Change of language to “Violent Islamism”) For a candidate that campaigned as an anti-establishment disrupter, he missed a profound opportunity to abandon the empty paralytic language of “violent extremism” and replace it with “violent Islamism”. That axis shift in national and global security focus is essential for a global strategy against radical Islamism and unfortunately, President Trump reverted to “establishment-speak” of CVE (Countering Violent Extremism).

9. MISS: (putting the Islamist establishment on notice) opportunity to take the Trump brand of anti-establishment and speaking truth to power to call out the “Islamist” establishment by name and name the OIC based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia as a “neo-caliphate” and ask that they change the paradigm of their nations from “Islamic” to “democratic” and “freedom” and “unalienable universal human rights’. All he needed to do was ask them how they would perceive an OCC (Organization of Christian Cooperation)? That’s the Trump I wanted to see.

10. MISS: (identifying Islamist, sharia laws) opportunity to call out by name and specifically as a root cause of radicalization the existence of Islamist and Salafist blasphemy laws, apostasy laws, hudud punishments, and other theocratic restrictions on religious liberty and free speech have upon indoctrinating millions of Muslims that such are the real ways of Islam and not freedom and liberty.

11. LAST… Some sound bites from my twitter feed (https://twitter.com/drzuhdijasser)

* Our only real allies in the region are the people, masses,who dream for freedom and revolution. @POTUS ignored them today for the most part
* @POTUS should have taken time to speak past this Arab Islamist mafia of the @OIC_OCI and speak to their peoples who dream of freedom
* As has been said- no @POTUS can address Islamist radicalism and terror without confronting corrupt evil governance of @OIC_OCI nations
* @POTUS should have taken time to speak past this Arab Islamist mafia of the @OIC_OCI and speak to their peoples who dream of freedom
* These countries are roiling with fears of democracy, liberalism and revolutions – I would have wanted @POTUS to speak to those values
* Strong speech-but run of the mill US establishment speech spoken to run of the mill global Islamist establishment..back to the 20th century
* Trump: directly confronts Iran, Syria, @khamenei_ir @Presidency_Sy Assad directly as terror states without mincing words. Refreshing.
* Wait he just hastily said “Islamic and Islamist terror” I think they all including are pretending he didn’t say it. Sorry doesn’t count.
* Trump “we will seek gradual reform not suddenly intervention” – uggh that sounds like the Saudi MO of delay delay delay, deception.
* Trump: “drive them out of this earth” – well then the room he’s speaking to should now empty?
* Trump “refugees shouldn’t flee but flock back” … well most of the tyrants you are speaking to treat their people like slaves and animals
* Trump: “center for battling extremist ideology” … “conquer extremism” — he has yet to say ISLAMIST EXTREMISM” disappointing

5/19/2017: M. Zuhdi Jasser, M. D. joins America Talks Live discussing Pres. Trump’s first foreign trip & a new ISIS video

 

5/19/2017: M. Zuhdi Jasser, M.D. joins Risk & Reward to discuss President Trump’s trip to the Middle East & what it means for policies.

 

 

5/19/2017: M. Zuhdi Jasser, M.D. joins Americas Newsroom to discuss President Trump’s trip to the Middle East & what to expect.