The US Foreign Policy magazine published a report warning US President Donald Trump against the State of Qatar, especially with the development of its negative policies in the Middle East after the Arab boycott.
The Arab Quartet countries (United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain) have directed several legitimate demands but the Qatari government did not respond to them throughout the entire boycott year, during which it has suffered bitter political, diplomatic and economic repercussions.
The demands included that Qatar deport to Egypt Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, a spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, and Khaled Meshaal, the leader of Hamas. Qatar was also expected to end all financial and political support of the Brotherhood, its affiliated movements, and terrorist groups across the Arab world, including Hamas in Palestine and al Qaeda’s Nusra Front in Syria, and cease all military and strategic ties with Iran.
The current US president, Donald Trump, initially supported the pressure exerted by the boycott countries on Qatar, describing Doha as a "funder of terrorism at a very high level.” The Saudi coalition’s demand that Qatar end its close ties with Iran was likely particularly appealing for Trump; after all, he has sought to make reversing his predecessor’s engagement with Tehran one of the hallmarks of his tenure.
But despite his previous support, the president's position has completely reversed. Earlier this spring, Trump received Qatar's Prince Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani at the White House, saying he was a "friend of mine" and a “very big advocate” in the war on terror.
The report commented on this stance, saying that the Trump administration is making a strategic mistake, and perhaps a very grave one. For one, it is true that Qatar has become somewhat closer to Iran, particularly after a joint effort to get kidnapped Qataris back from Iraq. The kidnappers were from the Iranian-created Shia militia terrorist group, Kataib Hezbollah, and the Qataris swayed the Iranians by paying them and their associates a ransom of close to $1 billion.
But beyond its ties to Iran, Qatar’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood is at least as troubling, if not more so. Since 2011, Brotherhood-linked groups have sown chaos from Egypt to Libya to Syria. For example, Brotherhood-linked terrorists are believed to have been behind the 2015 murder of Egyptian Public Prosecutor Hisham Barakat, who referred many Muslim Brotherhood leaders to trial. There have been countless other such attacks in recent years.