President and the Ersatz Tsar
American politics have borrowed a lot of ideas from sports. Nowadays, everyone has become familiar with certain phrases that we use in everyday life, often without even thinking about their origins. For example, the phrase "pull no punches" originated in boxing, and the proverbial "drop the ball” came from football. The well-known rule of "three strikes and you're out" came from baseball. The latter is the best way to characterize President Trump's attitude toward Vladimir Putin.
It seems that leftists in America still cannot forgive Putin for the destruction of the ideals that were nurtured in the West by the Soviet intelligence for decades. They somehow hoped that Putin would recreate the ideal society from their point of view -- the Soviet Union.
However, Putin built not left-wing authoritarianism, but an ersatz emulation of authoritarianism of Tsarist Russia instead.
If left-wing authoritarianism was the goal of all "useful idiots" in the West, then royal authoritarianism, even in the ersatz version, evoked memories of the nineteenth-century Russian autocrats. This explains the unbridled hatred of all American leftists both for Putin and for modern Russia.
Right-wingers in America have never experienced such an irrational hatred of Russia. For the conservatives, the USSR had always been an adversary, perhaps the main probable enemy, but not the object of hatred. This is why those on the right showed extraordinary compassion for their enemy when they were defeated in the Cold War.
For the right, the USSR has never been an idol, and its overthrow did not mean the end of the world. From a conservative point of view, the defeat of the USSR preordained only one thing: on the ruins of the USSR, American-friendly countries will soon be formed (as it was after the previous military conflicts of America -- remember Germany, Japan, Spain, Great Britain). This, as we know, did not happen. Instead of dealing with his internal affairs, Putin decided to play in the prime political league – with the U.S.
Putin made his first mistake in 2013 when he did not permit Trump to build a hotel in Russia. He made his second mistake in 2016 when he did not respond to a letter from Trump's lawyer about the assistance in the building of the same Trump Tower in Moscow. There was a message sent to the public e-mail address of the Putin’s spokesman, and it received no answer.
Of course, we've known for a long time that not responding to business letters is a part of modern Russian culture, but Trump is used to an entirely different treatment. (By the way, if you believe the conspiracy theorists, Trump is Putin's puppet, and therefore it is utterly unclear why Trump had to contact Putin via an open communication channel, and why he used intermediaries).
The third, final blunder Putin made, was while trying to insert kompromat (i.e., dirt) fabricated by Russian intelligence on Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump at the height of the 2016 election campaign. We all know that the attempt to foist dirt on Hillary through Trump's campaign had failed because Jared Kushner somehow smelled the rat (remember the lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya?)
However, the dirt on Trump was not only foisted, but even sold. Russian intelligence managed to sell a "Russian dossier" to Hillary Clinton's campaign, and get paid by her for this fake. More precisely, Russians got only part of the money. A considerable part of the money was put into the pockets of mediators -- a former resident of British intelligence in Moscow Richard Steele, opposition research firm Fusion GPS, and the law firm Perkins Coie LLP.
Trump learned about the fabricated "Russian dossier" and its origin two weeks before his inauguration in January 2017. This was the last straw for Trump. If during 2016, Trump still had hope that his curtsey towards Putin would lead to the construction of another Trump Tower in Moscow, then immediately after the inauguration, Trump took up what he knows best in his life as a builder -- the destruction of his competitors. Perfectly planned demolition with a charming smile on his face.
In addition to the ever-increasing economic, political, and diplomatic sanctions against Russia, Trump began destruction of the anti-American Axis Russia-Syria-Iran-North Korea. All these countries are under U.S. sanctions, but Trump took aim for a complete split of this coalition and recently began the process of North Korea's withdrawal from the Axis. Trump canceled Obama’s shameful deal with Iran. The growing U.S. oil and gas industry leads to a reduction in oil prices and slowly but surely stifles the primary sponsors of the Syrian regime -- Russia and Iran.
The United States is rapidly catching up with Russia regarding oil production. According to recent estimates, America will become the world's largest oil producer in less than a year. Add to this global leadership in natural gas production, which is a position our country has held for several years. It should be expected that the United States will soon become not only the world leader in oil and gas production but also the world leader in energy exports.
Trump realized that the client was ripe when Putin began to actively seek for foreign intermediaries to meet with Trump (incidentally, another question for conspiracy theorists -- why did Putin suddenly need intermediaries if Trump is a FSB agent and is directly connected with FSB headquarters at Lubyanka Square in Moscow)?
To make sure that Putin understands him, Trump arranged a arm-twisting performance in Brussels with NATO partners. As a result, all the parasitic countries which for decades were under the protection of American taxpayers will finally (at the risk of the U.S. withdrawing from NATO) begin to allocate 2% of their gross domestic product (GDP) for military needs.
On average, NATO countries (except the United States, with approximately 4% of GDP) spend about 1% of their GDP on defense, and as a rule, the farther away a country is from Russia, the less that percentage is. On a world scale, the United States accounts for about 40% of worldwide military spending, and the combined share of the remaining 28 NATO countries is only 15%. Under the pressure of Trump, their contribution may double. As a result, NATO would account for more than two-thirds of world military expenditures. Not bad result for the "Kremlin marionette in the White House," not bad at all.
Years ago, when Putin looked into Bush's eyes, he saw the victor, who nobly extended a helping hand to the defeated. When Putin looked into Obama's eyes, he saw a narcissistic "useful idiot."
When Putin arrived in Helsinki and looked into Trump's smiling eyes, he saw his political death.
Gary Gindler is a conservative blogger at Gary Gindler Chronicles.