President Trump continues to lie and claim that we have hundreds of billions of dollars in Saudi investment coming to the United States — the last figure he pulled from his rectum was $415 billion — but the core of those wild exaggerations comes from Jared Kushner pushing the State Department to inflate arms sale figures in the early days of the administration after Trump’s trip to Riyadh.
President Donald Trump’s reluctance to hold Saudi leadership accountable for the brutal murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi stemmed from a partly aspirational $110 billion arms deal between the U.S. and Saudia Arabia that was inflated at the direction of Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner, according to two U.S. officials and three former White House officials…
“We need to sell them as much as possible,” Kushner told colleagues at a national security council meeting weeks before the May 2017 summit in Saudi Arabia, according to an administration official familiar with the matter.
Another U.S. official said there was a back and forth between Kushner and Department of Defense and State officials on how to get to a larger number because the officials initially told Kushner that realistically they had about $15 billion worth of deals in works, based on the Saudi government’s interest in a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballistic missile system and maintenance of other systems.
But even that order has not been fulfilled.
So the real figure is $15 billion, but they claimed over $100 billion in arms sales last year and now are claiming more than $400 billion in total investment. I’ve called Donald Trump a carnival barker many times and I think the label is absolutely appropriate, not only for him but for his entire crime family. What is the job of a carnival barker? To make outrageous claims to get you to buy a ticket. The more outlandish, the better, without regard to the facts at all. That is the core of Trump’s entire business model and it always has been.