The impressive string of world leaders visiting the UAE following the recent death of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed has made it clear that the UAE plays an external role in regional and global affairs. The United States, in particular, has a keen interest in maintaining and strengthening ties with the new President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, as an ally in diplomatic and military matters and as a partner in current and future energy supply and innovation.
Cipher Brief talks about what it means and what comes next Middle East expert Norm RaulWho has served as Iran’s national intelligence manager at ODNI and has traveled extensively in the region since his retirement to meet with top regional leaders.
Cipher Short: What are the prospects for expanding US-UAE relations and what are the impetus and barriers for a strong bilateral relationship in the future?
Rotated: The rank and file of the US delegation that visited the UAE after the death of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, President of the United Arab Emirates, was significant. The list of officials elected to be part of this delegation tells us why the relationship is important to Washington. This group includes our senior officials on foreign policy, national security, and energy.
The security angle is easy to understand – the UAE is a trusted and valued partner and has earned that reputation. The enemies of the UAE are our enemies, and Abu Dhabi has deployed troops to fight our forces on multiple occasions.
Energy talks with the Gulf region centered on oil and gas. By the end of 2022, the UAE and Saudi Arabia will probably be the only remaining members of OPEC with additional production capacity. But the UAE’s green energy efforts are honored for their ambitions and potential, as demonstrated by the presence of former Secretary of State John Kerry. Secretary Kerry has made multiple visits to the GCC, and I understand that he has been impressed by their investment in climate change technology. The United States has also been influenced by the UAE’s commitment to interfaith and multicultural integration and its role in the development of the Abraham Accord.
Post a Path of Cooperation and Opportunity between the United States and the United Arab Emirates first appeared in The Cipher Brief.