US interests are deeply rooted on both sides of the Qatar row, and the Donald Trump administration should be careful whom they are seen to be backing, said Robert Amsterdam in a recent interview with Gulf News.
Robert Amsterdam, whose blend of political advocacy and international law has led to his retention by several world leaders, spelt out why the US administration has been sending mixed messages to both sides of the Qatar rift, according to the article.
“All of the Gulf nations are members of the US-led coalition against Daesh. Qatar hosts the largest US airbase in the region; more than 10,000 US troops are based at Qatar’s Al Udeid Airbase, which acts as US Central Command’s regional headquarters. Outside Qatar, all Gulf countries are purchasers of US defence equipment and are tied to US foreign policy priorities in numerous ways. Between 2009 and 2015, the US concluded $58 billion in arms deals with Saudi Arabia, and their financial ties are continuing to expand,” Amsterdam told Gulf News in an exclusive interview.
“Outside of financial and military ties with Gulf countries, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) represents one of the most stable multilateral bodies in the region. Both Qatar and its boycotting coalition are members of this council (except Egypt), meaning that the rift threatens the Gulf’s most stable unified international body. In other words, the costs of alienating any of the countries involved in the Qatar crisis are high,” Amsterdam said.