Thanks to a recent CNBC interview, we heard a rather interesting opinion from one of their guests. An Egyptian billionaire, Naguib Sawiris, stated that when it comes to U.S. foreign policy (one towards the Middle East in particular), it is “definitely President Trump” who got it right.
Sawiris, in a CNBC interview, told Hadley Gamble, in Abu Dhabi on Monday, that “I think what we’re seeing today is the product of Obama’s rule.” Basically, he thinks that Russia gaining ground in Syria is a direct result of inaction that was seen with the Obama administration. According to him, that same administration also allowed extremists to thrive in the Middle East. He also stated that “I’m not saying you should police the world, but you can’t let evil strive and say, ‘It’s none of my business.’ So, I believe President Trump is on the right track.”
If you recall, back in 2012, Obama’s administration threatened to retaliate if Syria’s Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons in that country’s civil war. After he did and took hundreds of civilian lives in the town of Ghouta with chemical weapons, U.S. stood their ground and did not respond with military action. Trump is also, pretty much always, quick to judge Obama’s administration and blame them for the rise of ISIS, even though we all know that this organization came to rise during the administration of George W. Bush. The ISIS started losing their grip, at least militarily, during Obama’s administration, and it was thanks to their support to Kurds, who were actually the ones fighting this terror group.
Sawiris said a few other things, but among those worth mentioning, he is not opposed to Trump’s decision to order a military strike on Syria, but since there is no obvious end in sight to the war something had to be done. Sawiris (who built a net worth of $4.2 billion mainly in the telecommunications industry) also said that, thanks to the fact that war still wages here (even though ISIS has been long wiped out), as a safe investment he favours gold, and that he would rather invest in democracies, in order to avoid being at the mercy of political rulers.
There is one exception to this, and it happened in North Korea (he invested around $250 million), where his company Orascom Telecom, holds the sole telecommunications license. He defended this by stating “I always think you should punish regimes but not the people of the regime,” and continued with “And from an investment perspective, there’s also a lot of sense in there. When they, North Korea and South Korea, unite or come to an agreement, my assets there would be worth billions.”