Donald Trump said what about the Middle East?

Donald Trump said what about the Middle East?
To mark Donald Trump's inauguration as the 45th president of the United States, we take a look at some of the comments made on issues regarding the Middle East.
5 min read
20 Jan, 2017
Trump took office on January 20 [Getty]
As the United State welcomes its 45th elected president, The New Arab takes a look back at some of the outrageous comments that caused a stir around much of the globe, especially the Middle East.

Trump on Muslims

"Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on. According to Pew Research, among others, there is great hatred towards Americans by large segments of the Muslim population." 

"In the Middle East, we have people chopping the heads off Christians, we have people chopping the heads off many other people. We have things that we have never seen before - as a group, we have never seen before, what's happening right now. The medieval times - I mean, we studied medieval times - not since medieval times have people seen what's going on. I would bring back waterboarding and I'd bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding." 

"I think Islam hates us.

"There's a tremendous hatred. We have to get to the bottom of it. There is an unbelievable hatred of us."

On Syrian refugees

"We have no idea who these people are. When the Syrian refugees are going to start pouring into this country, we don't know if they're ISIS, we don't know if it's a Trojan horse.

"And I definitely want a database and other checks and balances. We want to go with watchlists."

On Iran

"Iran should write us a letter of thank you, the stupidest deal of all time, a deal that's going to give Iran absolutely nuclear weapons. Iran should write us yet another letter saying thank you very much, because Iran, as I said many years ago, Iran is taking over Iraq, something they've wanted to do forever, but we've made it so easy for them."

On Iraqi oil/IS

"If we would have taken the oil, you wouldn't have IS, because IS formed with the power and wealth of that oil. They have among the largest oil reserves in the world. We go in, we spend $3 trillion, we lose thousands and thousands of lives, and then, we get nothing. It used to be to the victor belong the spoils. I always said: Take the oil."

"Q: You said you want to bomb the oil fields in Iraq to take on IS?"

A: "The only way you're going to beat them is that. You know why they're rich? Because they have the oil."

Q: "But I don't think the government of Iraq would want us to bomb their oil fields."

A: "There is no government in Iraq. The so-called government in Iraq went to Iran to meet with Iran. Iran is going to take over Iraq. That's as simple as that. I don't care about the government of Iraq. They're totally corrupt. Who cares?"

On Iraq War

"When you do someone a favor, they say thank you. When you give someone a loan, they pay you back. And when a nation like the US sacrifices thousands of lives of its own young servicemen and women and more than a trillion dollars to bring freedom to the people of Iraq, the least the Iraqis should do is pick up the tab for their own liberation.

"How much is it worth to them to be rid of the bloodthirsty dictatorship of Saddam Hussein and to have gained a democracy? In reality, that's a priceless gift. When I say they should pay us back, I'm not even talking about cash out of their pockets. All I'm asking is that they give us, temporarily, a few flows of oil - enough to help pay us back and help take care of the tens of thousands of families and children whose brave loved ones died or were injured while securing Iraqi freedom.

But does Iraq do that? No. In fact, they've made it clear they have no intention of ever doing so. Ever. The ingratitude of Iraq's leadership is breathtaking."

On Kuwait

"When Kuwait was attacked by Saddam Hussein, all the wealthy Kuwaitis ran to Paris. They didn't just rent suites -they took up whole buildings, entire hotels. They lived like kings while their country was occupied.

"Who did they turn to for help? Who else? Uncle Sucker. That's us. We spent billions of dollars sending our army to win back Kuwait. Our people were killed and wounded, but the Iraqis went back to their country.

"About two months after the war, several Kuwaitis came up to my office. They told me, 'We want to invest outside the United States.' We had just handed them back their country! They were watching TV in the best hotel rooms in Paris while our kids were fighting for them. And they didn't want to invest in this country?"

On Israel

"The U.S. must continue to nurture and safeguard our special relationship with the state of Israel. This relationship must remain the cornerstone of our policy tactics through the entire Middle-East region, as it has been for administrations of both parties for more than half a century.

"Why do we have this special relationship? It is not out of charity, guilt, or what some call 'ethnic lobbies.' We have been there for Israel because Israel is there for us. Israel is a stable democracy in a region filled with dictatorship."