Why did Trump meet 1 on 1 with Putin? What might he be hiding from Bolton, Pompeo, Kelly, & the American public? How will Putin use whatever Trump could be hiding to advantage Russia & hurt America? Trump’s total lack of credibility renders spurious whatever explanation he gives.
John Brennan, the former US CIA director is asking the question that many in the American public are asking.
FOX News reporter Brit Humes was equally critical as the president equivocated in backing the DOJ’s/ FBI’s 7/13/18 US indictments against 12 Russian GRU agents for attacking the US elections infrastructure in 2016. Mr. Humes indicated that he could have taken the tactic to confront Russia’s President Putin about his orchestrated attack into 2016 US elections’ systems; that he warned Russia that there would be serious consequences if he continued his mis-adventures into US politics, but he, President Trump did win a hard fought campaign. Then he could have said, let’s go on from here.
As per a 7/16/18 Shareblue report, “Trump’s press conference with Vladimir Putin has already been called “treasonous” by former CIA Director John Brennan, but Trump didn’t do all that much better with his usual Fox News defenders.”
“Fox host Neil Cavuto said Trump’s failure to stand up to Putin made his performance “disgusting.”
“A U.S. president on foreign soil, talking to our biggest enemy or adversary or competitor — I don’t know how we define them these days — is essentially letting the guy get away with this, and not even offering a mild criticism,” Cavuto said. “That sets us back a lot.”
President Trump had been in the bi-lateral meeting with the Russia President Putin for over 2 hours and 10 minutes. Both did have interpreters present.
The Russian president has been shunned from the world stage because of his actions like the 2014 unprovoked invasion and illegal annexation of Crimea, Ukraine; the nerve agent poisoning of peoples in the UK; his support of the brutal Syrian leader Bashar-al-Assad who has gassed his own peoples; and for managing a full throttle attack into US politics, especially during the 2016 US presidential elections; his interference in the politics of other countries; and let’s not forget the shooting down of the Malaysian airlines in 2014.
What’s not mentioned in the below report, is that a journalist on the Russian side, representing the news outlet, The Nation was literally forced out by a group of security personnel before the joint conference with the two leaders, began.
Here’s a run down of what occurred…
On the 16th of July 2018, The New York Times published the following report, “Live Updates: Trump-Putin Meeting in Helsinki”
“The timing was exceptionally awkward, just days after the Justice Department indicted 12 Russian intelligence agents on charges of hacking the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, in an attempt to aid Mr. Trump. Speaking briefly with reporters before the meeting, Mr. Trump said they would discuss trade, nuclear arms and China, but he did not mention Russia’s interference in the 2016 election that brought Mr. Trump to power.”
“Later, Mr. Trump and Mr. Putin both said that Mr. Trump had raised the issue of election meddling, but Mr. Putin again denied that it had taken place.”
“The summit meeting capped a weeklong trip to Europe in which Mr. Trump made his distaste for diplomatic norms abundantly clear: He caused turmoil at the NATO summit meeting and during a visit to Britain by demanding that allies spend more on defense, saying that Prime Minister Theresa May was mishandling Brexit, advising her to sue the European Union over the issue and calling the bloc a trade “foe.”
• “The meeting on Monday will be closely scrutinized for signs of whether Mr. Trump is friendlier to his Russian counterpart than he had been to the NATO leaders. The encounter began late, and the two leaders met one-on-one for more than two hours before heading into a working lunch with their aides.”
• “American observers on both sides of the political aisle feared that Mr. Trump, who dislikes policy briefings and has said he needed no preparation for the meeting, could be an easy mark for manipulation by Mr. Putin, a former intelligence agent whom Mr. Trump has refused to criticize directly.”
“Mr. Trump raised the matter of Russian interference in the 2016 United States election, the two leaders said at a news conference after their meetings, and Mr. Putin reiterated his denial of Russian involvement, rejecting the findings of American intelligence services and prosecutors.”
“I addressed directly with President Putin the issue of Russian interference in our elections,” Mr. Trump said. “I felt this was a matter best discussed in person. President Putin may very well want to address it, and very strongly, because he feels very strongly about it, and he has an interesting idea.”
“It was not clear what Mr. Trump meant.”
“In his own comments minutes earlier, Mr. Putin said: “President Trump mentioned the so-called interference of Russia in the American elections. I had to reiterate things I said several times: that the Russian state has never interfered, and is not going to interfere, in internal American affairs, including the election process.”
“Mr. Putin said the war in Syria, where the United States and Russia have backed opposing factions, actually represents a prime opportunity for cooperation between the two countries, and flattered Mr. Trump for his handling of North Korea. Mr. Trump this year became the first American president to meet with the leader of North Korea.”
“We are glad that the Korean Peninsula issue is starting to resolve,” he said. “To a great extent it was possible, thanks to the personal engagement of President Trump, who opted for dialogue instead of confrontation.”
“Mr. Trump began the day of the meeting by blaming the United States for its poor relationship with Russia, casting aspersions on the federal investigation into Moscow’s cyberattack on the 2016 presidential election, even as he said he felt “just fine” about meeting with Mr. Putin.”
“In a pair of tweets sent on Monday before he headed for breakfast at Mantyniemi Palace, a residence of the Finnish president, Mr. Trump twice branded the special counsel investigation into Russia’s election interference the “Rigged Witch Hunt.”
“That investigation, and “many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity,” he wrote, are why the United States’ relationship with Russia “has NEVER been worse” — a bold claim, given that the history includes periods like the Cuban missile crisis, and the wars in Korea and Vietnam.”
“He did not mention factors that are usually cited in the West as causes for friction with Moscow: Russia’s annexation of Crimea, its support for rebels in Ukraine and for the Assad regime in Syria, its meddling in the elections of the United States and in those of other countries, and the nerve agent poisonings in England that the British government has said the Kremlin was behind.”
“Nothing would be easier politically than to refuse to meet, to refuse to engage, but that would not accomplish anything,” he added. “As president, I cannot make decisions on foreign policy in a futile effort to appease partisan critics or the media, or Democrats who don’t want to do anything but resist and obstruct.”
“Mr. Trump also lashed out at former President Barack Obama for the second day in a row, tweeting that his predecessor had failed to intervene to stop Russia’s hacking because he “thought that Crooked Hillary was going to win the election.”
“The messages suggested that Mr. Trump, who has never directly condemned Mr. Putin for the election meddling and has cast doubt on whether he even agrees with his own intelligence community’s finding that it was carried out by Moscow, has not changed his stance in the wake of the indictment last week of 12 Russian agents in the attack.”
“Mr. Trump had said that he would ask Mr. Putin about the meddling during their talks but that he did not expect the Russian president to admit culpability, and that the issue was an obstacle to improving relations between the United States and Russia.”
“At the breakfast with President Sauli Niinisto of Finland and his wife, Mr. Trump telegraphed confidence about the day ahead, saying, “We’ll do just fine.” — Julie Hirschfeld Davis
Asked if Russia is to blame, too, Trump says yes, but cites no specifics
“Asked at the news conference if he held Russia at all responsible for conflict with the United States, Mr. Trump said: “Yes, I do, I hold both countries responsible. I think the United States has been foolish. I think we’ve all been foolish.”
“But he did not cite a single specific thing Russia had done to contribute to tensions. And as he often does, Mr. Trump pivoted from the question that was asked to declaring his innocence of collusion with Russian election meddling, and boasting about his electoral victory.”
“That was a clean campaign,” he said. “I beat Hillary Clinton easily and frankly we beat her. We won that race and it’s a shame that there can even be a little bit of a cloud over it. The main thing and we discussed this also: zero collusion.”
“There was no collusion,” he added. “I didn’t know the president. There was nobody to collude with.”
When asked about the credibility of his denials, Mr. Putin said: “As to who is to be believed, as to who is not to be believed, you can trust no one. Where did you get this idea that President Trump trusts me or that I trust him? He defends the interests of the United States of America and I defend the interests of the Russian Federation. We do have interests in common and we are looking for points of contact.”
“Mr. Trump’s perceived admiration of Mr. Putin, his urging at the recent Group of 7 meeting that Russia be readmitted despite its annexation of Crimea and his efforts to minimize United States intelligence about the impact of Moscow’s cyberattacks on the 2016 election had foreign policy experts and some in the White House wondering what he might give away to Mr. Putin— deliberately or inadvertently.”
“Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, on Friday (7/13/18) compared the danger of Russian cyberattacks with the warnings the United States had of increased terrorism threats ahead of the Sept. 11 attacks. “The warning lights are blinking red again,” Mr. Coats said. “The digital infrastructure that serves this country is literally under attack.”
“He said Russia should be held to account.”
“Allies including Britain say they welcome the Helsinki meeting, but Mrs. May warned that it must address Russian “malign activity.” (Russia is the chief suspect in an attack using a nerve agent on British soil that led to a woman’s death.)”
“Some analysts also note that while Mr. Trump abhors briefing memos, Mr. Putin would be well schooled before the meeting.Analysts say the fact that the meeting occurred at all is already a victory of sorts for the Russian leader.”