President Donald Trump on Tuesday weighed in on the escalating dispute between Qatar and several Arab nations, appearing to suggest on Twitter that leaders in the Middle East followed his lead and cut ties with Qatar.
“During my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology. Leaders pointed to Qatar - look!” Trump tweeted. He followed about 90 minutes later with a series of tweets more clearly taking credit for the Qatar moves.
"So good to see the Saudi Arabia visit with the King and 50 countries already paying off. They said they would take a hard line on funding extremism, and all reference was pointing to Qatar," he tweeted. "Perhaps this will be the beginning of the end to the horror of terrorism!"
His tweet follows moves by Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to sever ties with Qatar for allegedly supporting terrorism through the Muslim Brotherhood.
All five countries are key allies in the U.S. fight against terrorism, and on Monday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson downplayed any effect the diplomatic break from Qatar would have on U.S. counterterrorism efforts. The U.S. currently has a major U.S. airbase in Qatar.
During his trip to the Middle East last month, Trump discussed the global fight against terrorism. During his visit to Saudi Arabia, he spoke of “honestly confronting the crisis of Islamic extremism and the Islamists, and Islamic terror of all kinds.” The Politico