On 15 of the current May, US President Donald Trump received at the White House Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, who paid an official visit to the United States days before Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia to meet with a large number of Arab and Muslim leaders. Trump said during a meeting with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed “it was a great honor to be with us Sheikh Mohammed today, he is special. I respect him and I have known him for a long time “He added the sheikh “loves his country and I think he loves the United States , which to us is very important .” Abu Dhabi Crown Prince stressed to me that the UAE is “always keen to develop strategic relations with the United States, strengthen it and push it forward, especially in light of the consensus of the views between the two countries on regional and international issues, particularly the Arabian Gulf security and crises in the Middle East, and the face of terrorism, and threats to security and stability in the international arena.”
Observers referred to the US – UAE relations that the US president , in his meeting with the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, is working to have precise vision towards the handle of the countries in the region with various files that if he attended to the Saudi summit , he would have formed a clear picture and ideas to respond to the expectations of leaders who he will meet with them in Riyadh who want an integrated stand against Iran and against ISIS.
They pointed out that, in addition to the role played by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed in the UAE, he has a special relationship with the leaders of the Gulf region. In this context, the writer Richard Spencer said that Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed is of the powerful and influential figures in the region and seeks through the meeting with Trump to keep the US – Gulf relations at the highest levels.
Given the importance of this visit, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed was accompanied by both: «Emirates National Security Advisor Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for National Security Ali bin Hammad Al Shamsi and Chairman of Executive Affairs system. » During the visit, US President Donald Trump met with Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi in the closed-door meeting, where experts saw in the US – Emirati relations that were focused on joint cooperation in the fight against terrorism and extremism in the Middle East.
Sheikh Mohammed also discussed during his visit to Washington with US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, and US Secretary of Defense James Mattis, the international community’s efforts in the fight against terrorism, extremism, violence and coordination between the two countries in this regard, and underscore on Washington’s commitment to Abu Dhabi to face aggressive regional interventions in the affairs of countries in the region as well as for encouraging them to make more efforts to achieve stability and peace in both Libya, Yemen and Syria.
And Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed’s visit to Washington formed a milestone in the framework of a special relationship between Washington and Abu Dhabi. On one hand, he seeks to achieve joint cooperation to bring the United States and Russia to work together to build a strong system in the Middle East for the purpose of reducing the role of Iran by supporting a balanced solution in Syria takes into account the interests of countries in the region and impose on Tehran to withdraw its troops and allied militias from Syria and to allow Syrians to determine their future through dialogue.
On the other hand, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan signed with the US Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, a new agreement for defense cooperation and bilateral defense between the United States and the UAE.
A statement from the Pentagon provides that the agreement will facilitate close and strong cooperation against a range of threats over the next fifteen years. Mathis said commenting: “The agreement represents a new chapter in our partnership and reflects the breadth and depth of our continued cooperation, which is based on mutual respect that we share for the professionalism and effectiveness of our armed forces, and I look forward to continue working with the United Arab Emirates to support security and stability in the Middle East and around the world.”
Christopher Sherrod, a Pentagon spokesman said the new agreement with the United Arab Emirates “will allow the US Army’s ability to respond more smoothly to a number of scenarios within the United Arab Emirates and around when necessary.
And “experts in the US Gulf relations saw that the military agreement signed between the United Arab Emirates and the United States represents a remarkable shift in US defense maps in the region and shows the nature of the new US deployment there.
These experts adds that the agreement reveals the possibility of re-positioning of US forces in the region, according to a new vision adopted by Washington to the nature of its alliances in the Middle East.
They felt that the agreement between Washington and Abu Dhabi underscores Washington’s new approach to return to the Middle East and at levels higher after the hint of the former President Barack Obama’s administration to ease the US military presence in the region in favor of the development of US military readiness levels.
The agreement gives first signals for US plans to quantitative and qualitative re-positioning in the Gulf region from within Washington’s approach to the issues of anti-Daesh and counter Iranian influence in the region.
According to these experts , the new agreement gives Emirates broad role in the defense plans of the Gulf region in accordance with the terms of the new partnership between the United States and the Gulf Cooperation Council, which the US President Donald Trump will confirm the rules of it during his next visit to Saudi Arabia.
As the UAE has a distinct strategic approach in the affairs of the region, it is part of the fight efforts against Daesh and an active member in the Arab coalition in Yemen, which is aimed at freeing the country from Iranian influence, it is also allied with Saudi Arabia and Egypt and has advanced relations with Russia .
And they believe that Washington to allow to provide Emirates with weapons of quality reflects the American awareness of the role played by the UAE in the region and reflects the American support to the visions pursued by the UAE in addressing cases of extremism spread by terrorist groups in the region, and in response to the behavior of Iran, which is caused , by a network of its influence in Yemen and Syria Iraq and Lebanon, in serious damage to the Arab body and poured oil on the fire of the divisions in the countries of the region.
They stress that the current US administration is keen to consult with Abu Dhabi in all that would straighten out Washington’s strategy in the Middle East.
It is noteworthy that this defense agreement comes days after six days of the US State Department approval to sell 60 missiles “Patriot PAC-3” and 100 missile, “GEM-T”, to the United Arab Emirates, in a deal valued at about $ 2 billion, according to what was announced by the US Department of Defense.
According to the statement issued by the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the Pentagon, Thursday, that the proposed sales process, at the request of the United Arab Emirates, will “contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States, strengthening the security of an important ally.
” The Defense Security Cooperation Agency said that the United Arab Emirates “was and remains the strength of political stability and economic progress in the Middle East,” and continued by saying that this transaction is in line with the initiatives of the United States to support key allies in the region with advanced systems to help in the joint work with US forces and enhance security “.
From the above it can be said that the United Arab Emirates , in achieving economic well-being and strengthening it for its citizens under the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the United Arab Emirates and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Defense, supported by a strategic vision to preserve its security and the establishment of advanced diplomatic relations with Great and major countries by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s efforts , to establish a successful model in the state administration, both go in two parallel and harmonized lines to achieve the supreme interest of the United Arab Emirates.
Unit Gulf Studies
Rawabet Center for Research and Strategic Studies