President Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner reportedly personally intervened to get Saudi Arabia a deal on a recent arms purchase ahead of Trump’s visit to the kingdom this week. In negotiations on a $100 billion-plus weapons deal the White House hoped to reach with Saudi Arabia this month, Kushner jumped to the Saudis’ assistance when it became clear that the cost of a sophisticated radar system might be an issue, The New York Times reported Thursday. Kushner phoned Lockheed Martin’s CEO in the middle of talks and asked her to provide a discount for the radar system, administration officials were cited as saying. While Kushner’s phone call is not believed to have violated any laws, it appears to be the latest evidence of the Trump administration breaking with traditional diplomacy in favor of strengthening ties with foreign partners. The administration is expected to tout the deal as proof of the U.S. commitment to fighting terrorism in the Persian Gulf, with Trump to announce it during his two-day visit to Saudi Arabia this weekend.
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