Donald Trump has given his interview about his meeting with Vladimir Putin. Trump explained that both leaders are similar in that they put the interests of their respective countries above that of all others. Trump said that in spite of this leading to some disagreements, that his good personal feel about Putin means that two nuclear superpowers should cooperate whenever possible and have good relations in spite of any disagreements.
This classic pragmatic attitude to world affairs which sees the world in terms of national interests and spheres of influence rather than a radical struggle of ideology conforms with much of what was published in The Duran prior to the meeting.
It was also important that Trump had this first post-Putin interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). Increasingly many Christians in the US see attacks on Russia as attacks on a Christian nation. It seems this concept was not lost on Donald Trump. In many ways, the interview was Donald Trump’s domestic victory lap after a meeting that in many ways did more to reassure Trump’s base than it did to altar geo-political realities, certainly in the short term.
The following is Trump’s statements on the meeting:
“Well, he wants what’s good for Russia, and I want what’s good for the United States. And I think in a case like Syria where we can get together, do a ceasefire, and there are many other cases where getting along can be a very positive thing, but always Putin is going to want Russia and Trump is going to want the United States and that’s the way it is.
Sometimes you’re not going to get along on things and sometimes you will. But we had a good meeting, it was a face to face meeting, it was a long meeting. It was two hours and 15 minutes. Everyone was surprised by the amount of time but that was a good thing and not a bad thing. Yeah, I think we get along very well and I think that’s a good thing, that’s not a bad thing. People said, ‘Oh they shouldn’t get along.’ Well, who are the people that are saying that? I think we get along very, very well. We are a tremendously powerful nuclear power, and so are they. It doesn’t make sense not to have some kind of a relationship.
I think we had an excellent meeting. One thing we did is we had a ceasefire in a major part of Syria where there was tremendous bedlam and tremendous killing. And, by the way, this is now four days. The ceasefire has held for four days. Those (previous) ceasefires haven’t held at all. That’s because President Putin and President Trump made the deal, and it’s held. Now, I don’t know what’s going to happen. Maybe as we’re speaking they start shooting again. But this has held unlike all of the other ceasefires that didn’t mean anything
So, that was a great thing that came out of that meeting. I think a lot of things came out of that meeting but I do believe it’s important to have a dialogue and if you don’t have a dialogue, it’s a lot of problems for our country and for their country. I think we need dialogue. We need dialogue with everybody”.
Trump’s commitment to peace, dialogue, cooperation when possible and respect when not, is very refreshing, especially when compared with many in his party such as Nikki Haley who recently said that Russians can never be trusted.
Trump went on to state that based on his balance of power theory, Putin who is a strong advocate for Russian strength would have preferred Hillary Clinton as POTUS as in Trump’s view she would have been weaker than Trump.
The President of the US explained it in the following way,
“We are the most powerful country in the world and we are getting more and more powerful because I’m a big military person. As an example, if Hillary had won, our military would be decimated. Our energy would be much more expensive. That’s what Putin doesn’t like about me. And that’s why I say, why would he want me? Because from day one I wanted a strong military, he doesn’t want to see that.
And from day one I want fracking and everything else to get energy prices low and to create tremendous energy. We’re going to be self-supporting, we just about are now. We’re going to be exporting energy – he doesn’t want that. He would like Hillary where she wants to have windmills. He would much rather have that because energy prices would go up and Russia as you know relies very much on energy.
So there are many things that I do that are the exact opposite of what he would want. So what I keep hearing about that he would have rather had Trump, I think ‘probably not,’ because when I want a strong military, you know she wouldn’t have spent the money on military.When I want tremendous energy, we’re opening up coal, we’re opening up natural gas, we’re opening up fracking, all the things that he would hate, but nobody ever mentions that”.
Trump’s statements make it clear that ending the tense period of US relations with Russia which became deeply worrying under Barack Obama is a priority born of pragmatism and a respect for the patriotism of Russia’s President.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.