On Monday’s broadcast of CNN’s “New Day,” author, Washington Post columnist, and CNN political analyst Josh Rogin stated that the Biden administration is engaging in “pretty disingenuous” rhetoric about President Joe Biden’s meeting with Saudi leaders because Biden knows that despite his rhetoric, “when push comes to shove, human rights always [get] the short shrift” and is “embarrassed about actually folding” to the Saudis for oil. Rogin also argued no agreement on oil with the Saudis will be reached that will make a meaningful difference on inflation. Rogin stated, “I think their line of, oh, well, maybe we’ll see Mohammed bin Salman because he might be at the meeting is pretty disingenuous actually, John. Because of course everybody knows that President Biden has been avoiding the meeting with Mohammed bin Salman for a year-and-a-half, and now he’s folding because he wants the oil. And I don’t think that’s a good decision pragmatically. Because I think that enforces all the wrong behaviors. But at least the White House should just be honest about it. If they want to say that they’re folding because we need the oil and that’s — human rights [are] going to have to take a back seat, at least that would be honest. But what they’re trying to say is, oh, well, we’re just going to the meeting and if he shows up, he shows up, which everybody knows is nonsense.” He continued, “I also think if they did make that argument that we need to trade oil for human rights, that’s also bad policy. Because, in the end, we’re not going to see an improvement in their oil purchases that’s going to really make a difference on inflation, but we are going to see real damage to the cause of promoting human rights, and the Biden administration says that they have a human rights-centered foreign policy, but when push comes to shove, human rights always [get] the short shrift. And I think Biden knows that and that’s why he’s embarrassed about actually folding, and that’s why it’s taken so long and he seems sort of mealy-mouthed about it. But when he gets there, there will be no doubt he’s going hat in hand to beg a brutal dictator for some oil, and in exchange, he’s turning a blind eye to the human rights abuses of that dictator.” Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett.
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