As Donald Trump launches his presidential bid, he is also once again engaging in international business deals that have “conflict of interest” written all over them.
The New York Times reported the latest example on November 14:
The project is slated to be built in Muscat, Oman, on a hillside adjacent to the Gulf of Oman, and will include a golf resort, villas and two hotels, a company executive said.
The Trump family is teaming up with Dar Al Arkan, one of Saudi Arabia’s largest real estate companies, for the project.
“The Trump corruption complex is back in business,” said Robert Weissman, the president of Public Citizen, a liberal government watchdog group. “It is a remarkable revelation on the expected eve of his presidential candidacy announcement. Even without that, it would be stunning as another in a series of sweetheart deals from the Saudi government to the Trump family.”
Just like when the Saudis lavished $2 billion on Boy Blunder Jared Kushner’s private equity firm, despite his complete lack of experience, you have to wonder why on earth the Saudis (or anybody else) would want to be in business with the Trumps. As The Times points out, the Trump Organization is “inundated with legal problems,” including a trial in Manhattan for criminal tax fraud charges and a lawsuit by New York’s attorney general which has accused the company, Donald Trump and his three children involved in the company, of fraud. Attorney General Letitia James is also seeking to take control of the company away from the Trump family. An independent monitor has already been appointed to oversee some aspects of the company.
Are all these billions payback for Trump’s Saudi-friendly time in office? A down payment for future favors? For helping to greenwash the Saudis by hosting their Saudi-backed LIV golf tournament and claiming not to know they were behind 9/11? Or have there been some other deals (cough, cough Mar-a-Lago documents) we don’t yet know about?
Since news of the latest Saudi deal broke, the midterms happened and Donald Trump’s star has been decidedly sinking. It seems quite possible that by the time the project is completed, the Saudis will regret their investments in the Trump crime family. It couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch.