The summit that took place in Helsinki, Finland on Monday, July 16, between United States President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin was roundly criticized by many pundits on both sides of the aisle. The unfounded criticisms were built-out from the knee-jerk reactions of Democrats who have alleged collusion between Donald Trump and the Russian government in order to secure the election into the businessman’s corner.
There has been no evidence to suggest that the Trump Campaign colluded with the Russian government however, that has not stopped Democrats from attempting to draw a line between the President’s behavior at the joint press conference and their unfounded allegations of collusion.
The reaction from Democrats, liberals, and progressives alike was intentionally ‘off the rails.’ By making some Republicans feel cornered into making statements that portrayed Trump’s ‘soft approach’ to Putin as weak and inadequate, they believe they’re feeding the collusion narrative. At least, that’s what they believe in their D.C. echo chamber.
Don’t get me wrong, there were some Republicans that took the ‘scorched earth’ route however, the vast majority of harsh conservative critics were the usual suspects who populate the ‘Never Trump’ movement; dinosaurs such as, Bill Krystal and George Will. The Trump base never budged nor did the Trump base demand the President walk-back his statement in order to satisfy the mob.
The reasoning behind President Trump’s ‘soft approach’ to Vladimir Putin became much clearer at the United Nations on Thursday, July 19.
The UN Security Council was set to vote on disciplinary measures that were meant to punish North Korea for, what the United States characterized as, rampant cheating on petroleum imports, as they are restrained under current U.N. and U.S. sanctions.
The American complaint was lodged two weeks ago. Under UN Security Council procedures, all other members had until midday Thursday to object. Both Russia and China used their power on the Security Council to put a “hold” on the measure, which ultimately delays any action for six months.
The American complaint charges that North Korea is illegally importing petroleum, up to three times the limit permitted by all active U.N. and U.S. sanctions.
In order for sanctions to work, we need major allies of North Korea to be on the same page as the United States and the United Nations. This means both Russia and China. The sanctions are what is drawing North Korea to the negotiating table and we need them to remain enforced if we stand any chance in denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula. We also need Russia and China to issue refusals to any North Korean demands that violate existing sanctions, and a better working relationship with both could achieve that goal.
President Trump’s ‘soft approach’ to Vladimir Putin is directly tethered to the denuclearization of North Korea, it’s that simple. The North Korean nuclear threat is a much more pressing issue than that of election meddling, which had no impact on the outcome of any election. We already know what the Russian did in 2016, which was enabled by the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) refusal to allow the FBI access to their server.
Now, President Trump, who was targeted by the DNC with their funding of the phony Steele dossier, is supposed to forgo the possibility of a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula in order to satisfy Democrat calls to embarrass Putin on the world stage? I DON’T THINK SO!
The best way to counter Russia’s meddling is not to dress-down Putin on the world stage, it’s to use cyber measures that are more adequate than were used in 2016. This includes allowing the FBI access to critical election infrastructure when they request to do so, regardless of that infrastructure’s private or public status. Furthermore, we need the FBI to request warrants on the grounds of national security when being refused to examine critical election infrastructure.
With Democrats concentrating all of their energy on the Russian meddling efforts of just one election, one would believe they find their loss of power in 2016 to be a more pressing issue than averting nuclear war even though, the election result would have been the same had there been no meddling on behalf of the Russians.
President Trump clearly sees a “gotcha” moment on the world stage as counterproductive, and he is correct in that assessment. Had President Trump acquiesced to the demands of howling Democrats to shame Putin in that joint press conference, he would have certainly derailed any progress made in that closed-door meeting.
As it stands right now, China and Russia only put a “hold” on disciplinary measures pertaining to North Korean efforts to undermine existing sanctions. This gives President Trump 6 months to convince Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping that the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is in both of their best interests. Embarrassing either of them on the world stage will only hurt any progress in this arena.
President Trump cannot allow the mob-mentality of the American political left sabotage his efforts for a peaceful end to the nuclear threat in North Korea. It appears that President Trump is properly prioritizing the various threats that infringe on American interests throughout the world while Democrats persist to complain about a Russian meddling effort that had no significant impact on the outcome of a past election, as has been detailed in both indictments from the special counsel.
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