A new book claims that the glowing orb that President TrumpDonald TrumpStowaway found in landing gear of plane after flight from Guatemala to Miami Kushner looking to Middle East for investors in new firm: report GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips MORE, King Salman of Saudi Arabia and Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi were pictured touching in a viral image was hidden by officials after the Saudis gave it to the U.S.
In his book “MBS,” a profile of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, New York Times correspondent Ben Hubbard writes that after the 2017 photo taken at a Riyadh summit, the Saudis left the orb at the American Embassy, The Guardian reported.
“It sat in a hallway for a number of days, where diplomats passing by would pose for photos,” Hubbard wrote, but “someone apparently worried that the photos would make their way online and cause a scandal, so the orb was hidden away in embassy storage.”
The three took the photograph, which sparked numerous memes and parodies, as part of the launch of Saudi Arabia’s Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology.
And here’s Trump at the opening of the “Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology” in Riyadh pic.twitter.com/gshRT2nFLU— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) May 21, 2017
The book, set to be published next week, also details the Saudi crown prince’s role in Saudi foreign policy, including the war in Yemen, and his connections with the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi in October 2018 in a Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.
Hubbard also claims the Saudis appear to have attempted to hack his phone, echoing claims by Amazon founder Jeff BezosJeffrey (Jeff) Preston BezosHealth risks of space tourism: Is it responsible to send humans to Mars? Michael Strahan headed for space aboard next Blue Origin flight Why science and religion come together when discussing extraterrestrial life MORE.
The Hill has reached out to the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh for comment.