Joe Biden recently visited with the Saudi Crown Prince.
The optics of that meeting did not do Biden any favors.
Biden hopped out of his limo, walked up to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and fist bumped him…
The meeting took place in the Saudi city of Jiddah on Friday.
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Biden is now facing some serious criticism for the strange exchange.
Fist bump between President Biden and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at Al Salam Royal Palace in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. pic.twitter.com/37Oz5EwwIB
— CSPAN (@cspan) July 15, 2022
Joe Biden does not want you to see this photo! RT! pic.twitter.com/ox6pEvUG3c
— Nick Adams (@NickAdamsinUSA) July 18, 2022
A little less than three years after promising to make Saudi Arabia a "pariah state" over the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Biden arrived for meetings with Saudi leadership — sharing a fist bump with the man accused of ordering Khashoggi's murder https://t.co/KfF3CUdxti
— CNN (@CNN) July 15, 2022
CNN reports on the meeting:
President Joe Biden on Friday indicated to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that he believes the Crown Prince was to blame for the 2018 killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, even as Biden announced several new areas of cooperation aimed at reshaping US-Saudi relations.
The meetings in Jeddah largely seemed to go along with the planned reset of the US relationship with the kingdom after years of strain following Khashoggi’s death. But even more than the policy announcements and the formal discussions, it was the personal interactions between the US President — who once promised to make Saudi Arabia a “pariah” — and the kingdom’s de facto ruler that drew the most attention.
The President was fiercely criticized for fist bumping the Crown Prince during their first in person interaction by human rights groups and fellow Democrats, as well as the publisher of the Washington Post. Those images of Biden and the Crown Prince, also known as MBS, were quickly promoted by the Saudi government, including on Saudi state TV and Twitter.
Analysis: The encounter with the crown prince, who U.S. intelligence officials believe responsible for the plot that led to the killing of Saudi dissident and Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi, loomed above it all. https://t.co/Zk0saCPkWW
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) July 18, 2022
The Washington Post has more on the fist bump heard round the world:
It was the fist bump seen around the world. Biden was received Friday evening in the Saudi city of Jiddah, as part of a busy four-day itinerary that had taken him from stops in Israel and the West Bank to a regional summit of Arab states hosted by the Saudis. A lot was on the agenda as the Biden administration seeks to subtly reassert U.S. leadership in the Middle East and move along Israel’s rapprochement with an emerging crop of Arab partners.
But the encounter with the crown prince, who U.S. intelligence officials believe responsible for the plot that led to the killing of Saudi dissident and Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi, loomed above it all. The image was swiftly disseminated by the kingdom’s state media and prompted a global outcry.
Washington Post CEO Fred Ryan called the fist bump “shameful:”
“The fist bump between President Biden and Mohammed bin Salman was worse than a handshake — it was shameful,” Washington Post Publisher and CEO Fred Ryan said in a statement. “It projected a level of intimacy and comfort that delivers to MBS the unwarranted redemption he has been desperately seeking.”
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) July 15, 2022
Biden has faced a wave of questions about the strange greeting with the Saudi prince.
He simply laughs it off every time:
Joe Biden when asked about his fist bump with the Saudi Crown Prince:
"God love you. What a silly question." pic.twitter.com/gt3R0IKfVD
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) July 15, 2022
— Tommy moderna-vaX-Topher (@tommyxtopher) July 17, 2022
Criticism is certainly warranted here.
The Saudi government quickly shared photographs following the now-infamous fist bump:
Saudi gov’t quickly releases photos of Biden’s fist bump with MBS, reflecting the enormous political gift that the meeting is for MBS’ image https://t.co/Ud3FyH1mzP
— Ken Klippenstein (@kenklippenstein) July 15, 2022
Biden is now facing intense backlash from home:
Just to sum up: Biden was bamboozled into going to Saudi Arabia with the promise of more oil.
He was greeted at the airport by the mayor of Mecca.
MBS then got Joe to fist bump him on camera & absolve him of the murder of Khashoggi.
He then sent Joe home & said "no more oil." pic.twitter.com/ZfO2YMXxNj
— Rosie's No Refund Policy (@DarnelSugarfoo) July 16, 2022
The Saudi crown prince got a fist bump from Joe Biden.
11,000 Keystone XL workers got pink slips from Joe Biden.
— Lance Gooden (@Lancegooden) July 15, 2022
Did Joe Biden ever fist bump a Keystone XL pipeline worker?
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) July 17, 2022
The MBS fist bump and Brittney Griner situation both highlight the same issue
Biden is impotent on the world stage and no one has any respect for America under his regime
This is why the regime focuses on domestic dissidents so much. It's the only people they can control.
— Jack Posobic 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) July 16, 2022