Next week there are three major events worth noting. Netanyahu will meet with Trump, the Munich Security Conference gets underway, and the anniversary of the Iran Revolution will be marked.
Netanyahu and Trump to Meet
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will arrive in the US on Wednesday, the 15th to meet with President Trump. Netanyahu had previously met Trump during the campaign last year at Trump Tower. Both leaders want closer ties for Israel than what President Obama appeared to offer. The subjects that are most likely to be discussed will be Iran, the Israeli settlement issues, and moving the US embassy to Jerusalem. Also, the subject of gains in the Sinai Peninsula by ISIS may likely be part of the discussions.
The Munich Security Conference
On Friday the 17th, the 53rd Munich Security Conference kicks off. The Munich Conference is a forum for world leaders to discuss the current most pressing global issues. Vice President Mike Pence will represent the United States, along with Defense Secretary James Mattis, and Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly. NATO and EU leaders will be listening to Vice President Pence carefully. There are major doubts on weather Pence speaks with authority of the Trump administration. Trump has often undercut positions Pence has discussed publicly. On the campaign trail Trump was very critical of the NATO alliance and the European Union and European leaders will be looking for signs of any moderation of Trump’s rhetoric.
Iran Revolution Day
Next week will be the 38th anniversary of the 1979 overthrow of the Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Iran has been concerned with Trump’s rise to President. He campaigned on doing away with the nuclear deal negotiated by President Obama, and Iran immediately reacted to Trump’s “Muslim ban” by instituting its own travel ban against America. Also, Iran has defied the international community again by recently holding a missile launch. The celebrations and rhetoric on the May 19th anniversary of the Revolution will be important to monitor. Iran will be holding elections on May 19th of this year and the world is anxious for any indications of the popularity of the hardliners or moderates in the regime. If hardliners gain power in the upcoming election, Iran could very well return to the confrontational days of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.