Well maybe not. I suspect that the Donald has clear ideas and that he has already won the main battle. The Sunnis treated him as if he were the Messiah for good reason. They are at war with Iranian mischief making and do not like it.
In the Middle East, Trump Turns Back the Clock
May 20, 2017 | 13:40 GMT
After four months in office, U.S. President Donald Trump is beginning to hone his policy on the Middle East. As the weeks have worn on, his priorities for the region have started to emerge, and for the most part they seem to be focused on matters of security. Combating terrorist groups, including the Islamic State, and containing Iran's "destabilizing" activities in the region will be at the top of the agenda during his visit to Saudi Arabia this weekend — his first trip abroad as the leader of the free world. From there, he will travel to Israel, where he will raise the prospect of making a fresh (albeit ill-fated) attempt at reopening the country's stalled peace negotiations with Palestinian leaders.
Luckily for Trump, many of these priorities align with those of the Middle East's most prominent leaders. The president has already met with Jordanian King Abdullah II, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nuhayyan and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. But his ability to maintain those relationships, all while balancing their interests with his own and nudging them toward cooperation rather than conflict with one another, will shape his success in putting his regional policy into practice. And based on his decision to dust off ties with Israel and Turkey and to encourage greater coordination among the Middle East's powerful Arab states, Trump appears determined to undo the changes his predecessor wrought on Washington's strategic relationships in the region.
Prior to former President Barack Obama's tenure, the balance of power in the Middle East had been upset. The removal of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein under the administration of George W. Bush left the country — and its Shiite majority — open to Iran's influence. As Washington remained distracted by growing instability in Iraq after 2003, Tehran seized the opportunity to build up its nuclear program. Iran was then able to leverage its newfound capabilities to pull the United States into negotiations, demanding that Washington recognize Tehran's prominence in the region.
By the time Obama entered office in 2009, pressure was mounting to ease back on military operations overseas. Overextended and hoping to shift its attention to other emerging foreign policy priorities, such as growing tension with Russia and a much-touted "pivot to Asia," the administration worked to minimize the risk of clashing with Iran, particularly in the critical Strait of Hormuz. After much haggling and a change of leadership in Tehran, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was developed. Of course, Washington wasn't the only party that needed the nuclear deal; Tehran, too, hoped it would lessen the chance of war with the United States and allow it to concentrate on defending its interests in the region. After all, the Middle East's Sunni powers had begun to push back on Iran's attempts to meddle in Iraq, Lebanon, Bahrain and Yemen. The Iranian economy had also begun to founder under the weight of sanctions related to its nuclear program, and lifting them became a top priority.