Home Daily Blitz Saudi Crown Prince Kicks Off 3-Week Charm Offensive Across US

Saudi Crown Prince Kicks Off 3-Week Charm Offensive Across US


The following is an excerpt from CONOR FINNEGAN | March 20, 2018 | abcnews.go.com |

It's a three-week tour that any presidential candidate or celebrity would be jealous of -- one worthy of a newly minted crown prince, you might say, as he introduces himself to his most important ally.

But between the halls of Harvard University and the hills of Hollywood, Mohammed bin Salman -- the 32-year old heir to the Saudi throne who's made waves with his aggressive campaigns against his country's elites and its neighbor and enemy Iran -- must navigate tricky political factions in President Donald Trump's Washington, split U.S. public opinion on his country's image and criticism of his record, especially the war in Yemen he's led as defense minister.

The crown prince, known by his initials "MBS," is making his first trip to the U.S. after his power-grabbing move last June to become first in line for the throne and the de facto ruler of the country. Since then, he's begun a controversial reform campaign at home and a messy, assertive foreign policy abroad, with that devastating war in Yemen, but also a nasty split with U.S. ally Qatar, a failed plot in Lebanon and a tighter bond with the Trump administration.

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