Closing Thought–16Jul18

Our Dear Leader’s trip to Europe this past week and into this week has been a wealth of stories for the MSM……and one of the biggest that few have let go by without comment is the fact that he, Trump, thinks that Europe is the US chief foe in the world……

President Trump has raised eyebrows ahead of his meeting with Vladimir Putin regarding who he feels are the enemies of the United States. In an interview from Scotland with CBS News, the president told anchor Jeff Glor that the EU with its 28 members, many of which are longstanding US allies, qualifies. “I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade,” he said. “Now, you wouldn’t think of the European Union, but they’re a foe.” While the interview made headlines mostly for this line on Sunday, just a day before Trump is slated to meet face-to-face with Putin, Trump also said he believes the same about Russia and others. “Russia is foe in certain respects. China is a foe economically, certainly they are a foe. But that doesn’t mean they are bad. It doesn’t mean anything. It means that they are competitive,” Trump said.

Trump also sat with former CNN news show host Piers Morgan for the Daily Mail. As USA Today notes, the interview touched on some of today’s most hot-button issues, including the US Supreme Court’s potential to revisit Roe vs. Wade, Trump’s meeting with Queen Elizabeth II, and child separation at the southern border. The interview took place aboard Air Force One, where Trump told Morgan he believes there’s a “very good chance” the high court won’t address the landmark 1973 decision to legalize abortion. Trump also told Morgan he “had a great feeling” during his meeting with the queen and discussed with her the complexities of the Brexit issue. He added that Putin was “probably” ruthless, “but I could name others also.”

I am sorry if this statement insults any of my more Right leaning visitors…..but Our Dear Leader is an idiot…I do not care how many times one tells me that he is a genius and attended  Wharton…..then maybe he should have stayed awake during class…..his words are mindless crap to generate and get headlines and to focus all attention on him……a mental midget that will use his mouth to destroy this nation’s reputation in the world.

Just a thought here……If there is one thing the president and his aides should be working on between rounds of golf at his club in Scotland, it is exactly how the president will look and what he will say on the first handshake with Putin in Helsinki. This is not a reunion of frat buddies or old friends. This is a meeting of two powerful, competitive leaders at a time of great tension in the relationship between their nations, caused by one seeking to undermine the very foundation of the other’s form of government. (FoxNews.com)(Boy did Trump piss that meeting up)

Trying to make sense of the mindless words of Our Dear Leader is so exhausting….but someone needs to let the people know what he is doing to this country.

“I really think the world wants to see us get along,” Trump told reporters….

What world would that be?  The real world or the slimy world in Dear Leader’s mind?

Dear Leader’s News Conference

Breaking News……

Trump, our Dear Leader, and Vlad held a news conference and it was nothing that was a surprise to anyone that has an IQ above their shoe size…..

Dear Leader did what I thought he would do….throw a hand-grenade into the pit of world affairs….

If you support dear leader’s meeting with Vlad went well….and if you oppose him then this was so many opportunities missed and nothing surprising…..for he is a weakling in the presence of Vlad…..

President Trump and Vladimir Putin met for two hours Monday—about 30 minutes longer than allotted—and both emerged afterward sounding dismissive about allegations that Russia meddled in the 2016 election. Some highlights:

  • Putin denial: The Russian president dismissed the notion of “so-called Russian interference” in the election. “I had to repeat that the Russian state never interfered, and does not plan to interfere in internal American electoral process,” he said, reports the AP.
  • Trump denial: “There was no collusion,” Trump said, per the Washington Post. “I didn’t know the president. There was nobody to collude with. There was no collusion with the campaign.”
  • A ‘disaster’: Trump said the two “spent a great deal of time” discussing the allegations, and he called the investigation into them “a disaster for our country” that has “kept us apart,” reports the Wall Street Journal. “We ran a brilliant campaign, and that’s why I’m president,” he said.
  • Desired outcome: Did Putin want Trump to win? “Yes, I did,” he said. “Because he talked about bringing the US-Russia relationship back to normal.”
  • Intel community: Asked whether he believed Putin’s denial or US intelligence reports concluding that Russia did, in fact, interfere in the election, Trump sounded skeptical of the intelligence reports. “I don’t see any reason why it would be” Russia, he said. Trump also complained about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server in his response. Watch it here.
  • Cold War: It’s a “thing of the past,” said Putin, adding that he and Trump worked to “restore an acceptable level of trust.” On that note, Trump reiterated that he thought US-Russia relations had “never been worse” just prior to Monday’s summit. “That changed, about four hours ago,” he said.
  • A deal, with a catch: Putin suggested that US investigators could go to Russia to take part in the interrogation of 12 Russian intelligence officers recently indicted in the Robert Mueller investigation. But there’s a catch: “Let the Mueller commission send us a request, and we will do the work necessary to respond,” Putin said. “We can expand this cooperation—but we will then also expect from the US side access to people who we believe are members of the intelligence agencies.”
  • Similar praise: Putin called the meeting as “successful and useful” and said it took place in an “open and businesslike atmosphere.” Trump called the meeting “a good start, a very good start for everybody.” The two leaders met one on one, with only translators present.
  • Watch it: The White House has video of the full news conference here.

The president said that US-Russian relations have changed forever……

Personally, he looked like a star struck groupie when he was in the presence of Vlad……sad for this country…..sad for the future.

The Big Meeting Or The Spirit Of Helsinki

Today I have dedicated my posts to the “Big Meeting” that the whole world is talking about and some of it is also just as worried.

Ukraine and Syria are the two most urgent problem sets. On the former, diplomacy has stalled. France, the United Kingdom, and the United States appear to be consumed with other problems. Talks with Russia on the core issues behind the Minsk agreements—a cease-fire, a restoration of Ukrainian sovereignty, a workable political order in the Donbas region of Eastern Ukraine—might stimulate the Western appetite for leadership. With the rebels surrendering, President Bashar al-Assad’s Syria will be taking on a new form, the volatility of which could provoke a war between Iran and Israel. This is an outcome Russia and the United States would both want to avoid. They should be looking ahead in consultation with each other. U.S. leverage over Israel and Russian leverage over Iran is incomplete, but a basic degree of coordination would certainly help prevent conflict. Addressing these dilemmas should not be deferred to 2020 or 2024. Arms control, counterterrorism, the Arctic, and space are other issues that deserve real bilateral attention. Low-key discussions out of the public eye have modest potential, and the Russian and U.S. presidents could give these discussions a preliminary blessing in Helsinki.

In an ideal world, Trump would raise the issue of election interference one-on-one with Putin. Those U.S. officials who join Trump at other meetings would do the same. No less important, Trump would make an emphatic public statement about Russian meddling while together with Putin, as French President Emmanuel Macron has done at comparable moments. Putin will deny the meddling, and Trump should neither accept this denial, as he has in the past, nor make an official acknowledgment from Putin a precondition for moving forward. The confession will never come, but raising the issue with clarity and without embarrassment would convey American resolve and a willingness to respond. If Trump waffles on the issue in Helsinki, however, Russia will score a propaganda victory and will likely be emboldened to test further what redline, if any, the administration has on meddling.

(Foreign Affairs)

Will Dear Leader take troops out of Syria?  (I would not argue with that move)  Or will he end “war games” in Eastern Europe?

A big meeting with low expectations from our dear leader……

With heavy expectations for the first summit between President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, administration officials are desperately trying to downplay Monday’s talks, with Trump saying he’s come into the talks with very low expectations.

“Nothing bad’s gonna come out of it, and maybe some good will come out,” Trump said. He followed this up with a series of Tweets complaining that it would never be good enough for his critics.

(antiwar.com)

Ambassador Jon Huntsman sought to lower the bar even more on the summit by insisting the media is making a mistake in calling it a summit at all, saying it’s only a “meeting.” He emphasized the need to hold Russia accountable.

This is where some offer a small bit of advice to Our Dear leader…….

The meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin in Helsinki this week comes on the heels of a turbulent NATO summit that saw the American president butting heads with the other European leaders. In an era where Trump seems to be combative with allies and collegial with adversaries, the world will be watching attentively.

Simply, the agenda of the summit is to discuss relations between the two countries. One of the most important topics will be Russian involvement in the 2016 American election. This comes as the two leaders will meet just days after special counsel Robert Mueller handed down 12 new indictments of Russian nationals in relation to election hacking.

http://thehill.com/opinion/international/397026-for-successful-summit-in-Helskini-trump-must-choose-words-wisely

Oh but wait….there are others that think that this meeting should be nothing more than a handshake and a photo op…….

President Trump should not seek a grand bargain in Helsinki. There is no grand bargain to be had with President Putin, a world-class deceiver. Likewise, Trump should not try to charm, flatter, or appease Putin. Previous presidents have tried that approach, and rather than resetting the relationship, it only made matters worse.

Regardless of how much American presidents wish it were not so, Russia is a prideful country with a long history that views the United States as an opponent.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/07/16/no_grand_bargain_in_helsinki_113608.html

Our Dear Leader has been wetting his pants for decades on the chance of getting a face to face with Putin and now he has what he has dreamed of for so long.

All in all if there is no advisers in this meeting then we will not know what the two talked about and I will bet that it has little to do with our national security and everything to do with the Trump name.

A little musical interlude in honor of the meeting held today…..

Let me remind my readers of the prediction made by Soviet Premier. Nikita Krushchev…….

What team is Our Dear Leader Playing on?(To use a football metaphor)

Need more be said?

“I really think the world wants to see us get along,” Trump told reporters

Please……What world would that be?

When Did They (Russia) Become A Friend?

Russia/US Summit/Meeting (depends on which version you want to believe) happening today…..

As far back as I can remember Russia has been in the cross hairs of the GOP….there was NOTHING about Russia that would be considered admirable……yes I know that most of those days were when Russia was called the USSR…a damnable communist state….and then the state collapsed and we saw a drive for democracy something they did not have under the communist leaders…..then we entered into the era of Putin and now Russia is our best friend….or so it seems if you listen to the dumbasses on the Right and even the GOP is graveling to Russia.

I remember 40 years ago I wrote something nice about Russia and I was beaten over the head by many with chants of “America…Love It Or Leave It”……my how times change……for those are the very same mental midgets that see no problem with Russia today.

I was asking this question and a friend turned me onto a leading paper in Philly that was asking the same question….

I am a member of the last generation that grew up thinking the Soviet Union was a godless, murderous regime that cast its enslaved inhabitants into perpetual darkness. I remember sitting at my desk at St. Mary’s Academy in 1967, praying for the souls of the boys and girls, the future swimmers, gymnasts, ballerinas, pole vaulters, weightlifters and cosmonauts who would battle us for world domination. I didn’t put a lot of effort into those prayers, because even at that young age I knew that those kids hated us as much as we hated Ovaltine (if you know what it is, you understand, and if you don’t know what it is, I can’t even begin to explain).

As I grew older, I became fascinated with what I called “Russia,” because even though I knew there were a lot of countries with distinct and separate cultures that had been swallowed up by this monstrous geographical hydra, I couldn’t pronounce 99 percent of the places with names that ended in “azakstan,” “bekistan,” “ikistan” and other things that sounded like seasonal allergies.

http://www.philly.com/philly/columnists/christine_flowers/when-did-russia-become-a-friend-of-america-20170713.html

He rid himself (Trump) of a hawk that was always pointing out the flaws in Russia and wanted the US to disengage from them…..after years of a “nation non grata” Russia has now found a “friend” in the White House.  My next question is what happened to that hawk Bolton?  Did he have an epiphany once he came to the White House?  He is a Russia fan now that he is supping with our dear leader?

Russia and US have always been butting heads over the division of the world…..but since January of 2017 everything points to Russia as an ally in some way…..Trump has even decided to rid himself of Russian hawks within his administration……

Shortly before Donald Trump detonated a NATO summit, shanked the beleaguered British prime minister and prepped for a face-to-face love session with Vladimir Putin, his White House quietly divested itself of a senior official hawkish on Russia and bullish on the transatlantic military alliance.

The circumstances of retired Army Colonel Richard Hooker’s departure from the National Security Council on June 29 are in dispute. It’s not clear whether Hooker was forced out or if his detail on the NSC came to its natural end. But what’s not in doubt is that for the past 15 months, Hooker was senior director for Russia, Europe and NATO.

https://www.justsecurity.org/59452/russia-hawk-axed-national-security-council/

Let me ask…..Our dear leader said in an interview with some tool named Morgan when asked about Russia said…..” Putin was “probably” ruthless, “but I could name others also.”  What does that have to do with the question….he tries to deflect all questions about Putin…leads me to think that something nefarious may be going on….think about it….if your wife was this evasion what would you think?

I guess these days it is whose line you want to believe….but regardless….Russia interfered in some way with the last election…they may or may not have had any influence….but the fact that they tried should be condemning….but for the GOP it is not.

Why?

High Anxiety

Did you guys see the Mel Brooks movie by the same name?

If it is Monday it must be Finland.

Today our dear leader will be meeting with his bud in waiting, Vlad Putin……after the disastrous NATO appearance many are worried what Trump will give to Putin…..

For many the meeting between the two leaders is causing this high anxiety of what Trump will give away if his ego remains intact……

U.S. President Donald Trump evidently expects his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin to be the easiest of his upcoming high-level meetings. If so, he has brought that condition upon himself.

Trump’s choleric, ignorant, menacing, and, to be honest, strategically illiterate ramblings about NATO not being in the U.S. interest and too costly, about the EU’s trade barriers, and Putin himself, have not only generated alarm across the entire Western political class, but also given Putin an inestimable victory at no cost.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/07/13/high_anxiety_donald_trumps_summits_113605.html

Rumors are swirling that Trump is considering cancelling the “war games” in the Baltics….something that Putin would take a shine to…..then there is the possibility that Putin has already considered what to do to massage Trump’s ego and make him look like a savior of the Western world…..

The first extended meeting between the two presidents is being viewed in Russia as an opportunity to turn a new page in relations that have plunged to rock bottom over a host of issues. They include the war in Syria and the sanctions imposed on Russia for its alleged election meddling, its annexation of Crimea and support for secessionists in Ukraine.

The summit, if successful, could boost the likelihood of sanctions de-escalation, Citigroup said in a research note.

(bloomberg)

For all his, Trump’s, tough talk he is still a light weight fighting in a heavy weight bout……

All American presidents love the ceremony of these summits none more so than Donald Trump, who is addicted to the idea of himself as one of the great men making history with a capital “H.” Trump loved his recent Singapore summit with Kim Jong Un so much that he came out of it sounding like a love-struck teen-ager, bragging about an illusory deal and commending the “strong,” “funny,” “smart” dictator, who also happened to be a “great negotiator.” On Monday, in Helsinki, Trump will have his long-awaited summit with the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, a meeting he has personally pursued over the cautions of his advisers and despite the long political shadow of alleged Russian influence over his 2016 campaign. Beyond the allure of aggrandizement and the mystery of President Trump’s affinity for the Russian strongman, why the meeting is taking place now remains a mystery. Is the purpose to discuss arms control? Syria? Ukraine? To rehash the 2016 election? Remarkably, it’s not clear, and that in and of itself marks this as a most unusual summit. In Brussels on Thursday, after two days of, at times, openly hostile meetings with his NATO allies, Trump was asked whether he would consider scrapping military exercises in the Baltic states neighboring Russia if Putin asked him to on Monday. “Perhaps we’ll talk about that,” he replied, to the great alarm and consternation of Europeans who had been publicly reassured by American officials that Trump would do no such thing. Who knows? Despite the buildup, the Helsinki summit, the President acknowledged, is just a “loose meeting.”

https://www.newyorker.com/news/letter-from-trumps-washington/an-amateur-boxer-up-against-muhammad-ali-washington-fears-trump-will-be-no-match-for-putin-in-helsinki?

Us foreign policy wonks will be holding our breath and praying that our beloved leader does not give away the country to Putin during this “summit”.  Basically it is of no purpose…it is a “summit” for the sake of the optics nothing else.