The Corner

National Security & Defense

Krauthammer’s Take: After 50 Years Spreading Radicalism, Time for the Saudis to Rein It Back In

Charles Krauthammer argued that the most important goal of Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia was to establish a coalition of Sunni Arabs to deal with Sunni radicals:

A lot of presidents have been saying that, but I thought the dramatic effect of the president’s Saudi visit was the meeting of the 50 nations at the summit, mostly, I think overwhelmingly, Sunni, where essentially what Trump did was put together posse, a coalition of Sunni Arabs. The first objective is to oppose the Iranians, the Shiite threat to fight the civil war within Islam, between the Shiites and the Sunnis, between the Persians and the Arabs. But there was a secondary message, and that is to fight the Sunni radicals among them. Al Qaeda and ISIS are Sunni radicals. They are not Iranian. They are not Shiite. I think it’s time, after 50 years of the Saudis using their wealth to spread their Wahhabi radical ideology through the Madrassas, throughout the Muslim world, and thereby radicalizing people throughout the world. We’re now seeing the fruits, a generation later, of that. The Saudis understand the irony of what they’ve done. And I think this could be the beginning of Saudis and other Sunni radical nations — radical, in the sense that they spread this radical ideology — reining it back. And that would be a major step.

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