“I thought I was having a heart attack,” Abdullah II told an American friend in 2018. “I couldn’t breathe. I was squirming,” the Jordanian king added, according to a new book, The Divider: Trump in the White House 2017-2021. Its authors are The New York Times correspondent Peter Baker and Susan Glasser from The New Yorker magazine.
Hot soil on the river bank
According to a report by the Washington Post, Trump did not seem to realize that the move could destabilize the Hashemite kingdom. More than half of Jordan’s 9.5 million inhabitants are of Palestinian origin, some of whom have called for the overthrow of the monarchy.
Jordan’s king appeared in public next to his brother for the first time since the split
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According to the Washington Post, Trump offered the Israeli-occupied West Bank, which borders Jordan, to the Jordanian king in 2018. This is a territory that is not under US control. However, Trump thought he was doing the King of Jordan a favor.
Israel occupied the West Bank during the 1967 war. The Palestinians on this territory want their own state. In addition to 2.5 million Palestinians, half a million Israelis live here in dozens of settlements.
Baker and Glasser’s book, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Post, is the latest in a long line of deeply debunked behind-the-scenes reports featuring or written by Trump administration insiders. At the same time, some of them claim that they tried to limit the worst instincts of the 45th US president.
Baker and Glasser, who are married, say their book is based on reports they prepared for their media “as well as approximately 300 original interviews conducted exclusively for this book.”
“We obtained private diaries, memos, memos, emails, text messages and other documents that shed new light on Trump’s time in office,” they said. Reporters also conducted two interviews with Trump at his Mar-a-Lago residence.
Expected retaliation for Soleimani
According to the British newspaper The Guardian, the book also states that Trump confided to his friends in 2020 that he was afraid that Iran would try to assassinate him in retaliation for the killing of the commander of Iran’s elite forces, Qasem Soleimani, who was killed in the same year in 2020 by the American drone in Baghdad.
The Pentagon said at the time that Soleimani was preparing attacks on American diplomats and soldiers in Iraq and the wider Middle East. Trump boasted of the blow at a rally with voters in Ohio.
“We stopped him, we stopped him quickly and we stopped him in cold blood… He was a bad person. He was a bloodthirsty terrorist and he is no longer a terrorist. He is dead,” he said. According to Glasser and Baker, less than a year later, at least in private, Trump was less assertive.
Ayatollah Khamenei prayed over Soleimani’s coffin with tears in his eyes. The crowd chanted ‘Death to America!’
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Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei tweeted on December 16, 2020: “Those who ordered the assassination of General Soleimani and those who carried it out should be punished. This revenge will surely come in due time.”
Trump and his advisers considered more strikes, but backed off as Trump’s term neared its end, according to the book. “Trump told several of his Florida friends at a cocktail party that he was afraid Iran would try to assassinate him and therefore needed to return to Washington where he would be safer,” the authors wrote.
Loyalty like Hitler
Another theme that emerges in the book is Trump’s fixation on attacks against perceived enemies and the growing concerns of senior officials in his administration.
According to another excerpt from the same book published in August, Trump confided to his chief of staff during his presidency that he wanted his generals to be as loyal to him as German World War II generals were to Adolf Hitler.
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