Visits by two world leaders will take the political spotlight this week but the Oval Office will be distracted by developments within his own political party while other issues hang over the White House as the Administration’s sword of Damocles.


On Monday Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, President of Egypt, will make his first official visit to Washington and it will mark an important step in President #Donald Trump’s plans in regards to the Middle East.

While no official announcement has been made as to the themes for the visit newspapers speculate that it will include arms sales, the Egyptian opposition Muslim Brotherhood which the el-Sissi government hopes the Oval Office will label as a terrorist organization and also developments in the ongoing situation between Israel and the Palestinians.

These themes would strain the diplomatic capacity of any Administration but the occupant of the Oval Office also has his thoughts on domestic issues as well as an even more important visit later in the week.


Over the weekend White House director of social media Dan Scavino Jr. ensured that internal Republican Party matters will remain in the spotlight when he called for a primary challenge to Freedom Caucus member Justin Amash of Michigan.

This call was in response to the Freedom Caucus’s role in the withdrawal of Paul Ryan’s proposed bill for the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act. This defeat also resulted in a number of tweets by the President criticizing the Caucus.

As discussions have begun on the proposed budget Scavino’s call marks an escalation in the Republican conflict and potentially makes future negotiations for other legislation even more difficult for both Houses.

Tellingly President Trump has yet to make an open call to the one group that could most assist in the passage of legislation in both Houses, the Democrats. The fate of Ryan’s American Health Care Act showed that the GOP is too highly divided for at least the near future, yet the only moves by the White House in preparation for future legislation only make its job harder.


At the same time the investigations into the alleged Russian hacking of the presidential election continue with the potential to create even more havoc and distractions for the White House.

While the intelligence community works towards completing its task the Senate and House Intelligence Committees will continue on their respective roads.

The House Committee in particular will have to confront the behaviour of its Chairman, Republican Devin Nunes, who between mysterious meetings and cancelled sittings has put into doubt his neutrality and therefore that of the Committee as a whole. On the other hand the Senate Committee sees open cooperation between the GOP and Democrat members to ensure transparency and impartiality on their own investigations.

This then is the background leading up to the diplomatic end of week finale for the Oval Office.


Next weekend China’s President Xi Jinpin will be a guest of President Donald Trump at his Mar-a-Lago resort. This meeting is of prime importance as the subject matter will doubtlessly include action against Pyongyang’s provocations and also the commercial agreements between the two countries in the light of Friday’s new executive orders covering international trade.

In anticipation, the Oval Office’s national security aides have completed a review of its policy in regards to North Korea but this may have been pre-empted by President Trump’s tweet on the weekend that he was prepared to take action on his own against the recalcitrant Kim Jong-un if necessary. No response has yet come from Beijing on this statement.

Normally these matters on their own would ensure a busy and delicate week for Washington but the first eleven weeks of the Trump Administration have shown us almost anything is possible and many around the world are wondering what could possibly happen to distract Donald Trump and the world during the next seven days.