At NATO Trump Represents the United States of Russia
Those who don’t know what Russia is getting out of ‘President Trump’ need to open their eyes. With news of the FBI’s interest in Jared Kushner, it seems quite plausible that a topic of conversation at that meeting Jared had with the sanctioned Russian bank was about-gee, I don’t know: removing the sanctions?
Sorry if this seems counterintuitive. Then you have the meeting in Seychelles back in January with Erik Prince to find a deal to-remove the sanctions.
You have Mike Flynn on the phone five times with Russian ambassador Kisylak to-remove the sanctions.
There is reporting that the Russians knew about Putin’s favorite American friend, Rex Tilerson, going to State first. What has Tillerson done at the State Department? Mostly dismantle the State Department root and branch which serves Russia’s interests above all.
Then there was yesterday’s gruesome performance at NATO. He shoves a European minister, he calls Germany evil and he demands that NATO ‘pay up.’ How differently he speaks to our European allies from democratic countries than foreign dictators like the Saudis. In Saudi Arabia he really seemed to be ‘home again.’
He spoke of Saudi Arabian values-as if that’s a thing. It was a very different story yesterday:
“We’ve had a number of disquieting reports today from President Trump’s trip to Brussels and a meeting of NATO leaders. I want to step back from the particulars and look at the larger picture.”
“Trump also declined to pledge his support for Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, the provision that commits all members states – but most importantly the US – to defend members who are attacked. Article 5 isn’t a key part of NATO. It’s the cornerstone. In many respects it is NATO.”
When trying to get to the bottom of Trump Russia, remember there are different sides to it:
1. There is the issue of the cyberattacks on Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democrats themselves. Did Trump’s campaign in any way coordinate or collude with that? Not to get off topic but Naveed Jamli was again claiming on Chris Hayes that Russia collusion is a small part of this now-‘Put that in the parking lot.’
The very same day that a new story broke in the Wall Street Journal about Guccifer 2.0, a GOP consultant in Florida, and Roger Stone.
2. There is the issue of relationships between Trump and various members of his campaign, then his transition, and Administration. There are just a whole lot of incestuous ties that bind. Those who want to believe the many connections-Manafort, Flynn, Carter Page, Jeff Sessions, Jeff Gordon, Rex Tillerson, Michael Cohen, Jared Kushner, Boris Epsteyn have a much more miraculous faith in the power of coincidence than do we alleged conspiracy theorists in the power of conspiracy.
3. Then there are the financial ties of Trump and his family business to Russian banks or Russia mobsters.
4. Finally there’s the quid pro quo angle: What’s in it for Russia? If the US will no longer even say ‘An attack on one is an attack on all’ NATO is done.
Today: the president espoused Russian views at NATO summit; his supporters at home minimized or even endorsed violent attacks on the press.
— David Frum (@davidfrum) May 25, 2017
After today, my guess is that NATO will run on autopilot under EUR and CAN stewardship while they await a change in US administrations.
— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) May 25, 2017
Back to Talking Points Memo:
“Meanwhile, a report in der Spiegel suggests Trump harshly attacked Germany and its export practices in a meeting of NATO/EU leaders. His team also created confusion among their EU interlocutors by appearing not to understand that EU member states only make trade deals as a group. It’s a bit hard to decipher precisely what was being discussed here. Was this really a misunderstanding or a bullheaded effort to make a point?”
“It harkens back to the line the Trump braintrust was pushing last December and January, which was that they intended to pursue a plan of breaking up the EU, using a newly Brexited UK as their tool to tear it apart. This was clearly back in a period of maximal Trumpite triumphalism, when they fantasize about rolling the whole world before their ‘revolution.’
“Times change; reality intrudes; compromised advisors are tossed aside.”
“But this cluster of signs and provocations suggests strongly that we are still in the same place, still in a position where the President of the United States is actively seeking to undermine NATO and – through different modalities and for slightly different reasons – the EU as well.”
“Each of these aims, each of these goals lines up more or less perfectly with the strategic ambitions of the Russian Federation, which sees NATO as a bulwark of Western/US military strength hemming Russia in behind borderlands it sees as within its proper sphere of influence and with the EU, representing a liberal internationalist order which it has set itself against. A lot of this thinking comes from the Bannonite/”nationalist” part of the Trump crew, though Trump has espoused elements of this vision for years. That group, in turn has deep ties to various European rightist parties which share this anti-NATO, anti-EU, politically illiberal stance. Many or most are funded by Russia. Whether or not this is being done on Putin’s behalf, it clearly lines up within Putin’s and Russia’s aims. Putin wants a fragmented Europe; Trump does too.”
“We should not lose sight of this elemental fact in what seems like a herky-jerky parade of provocations and gaffes on this latter portion of Trump’s trip. The Russia story isn’t just what happened last year. It continues.”
Precisely. Russia’ investment in Herr Trump is paying off very handsomely.
After Trump's NATO remarks WH econ adviser Gary Cohn tells AF1 pool: "Right now, we don’t have a position" on Russia sanctions.
— Carol Lee (@carolelee) May 25, 2017
That says it all. In other words-they’re opposed.
Making Russia Great Again.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.