'Adopting the Putin Playbook': Pulitzer Prize Winner Explains How Trump Used a 'Kremlin Talking Point' in Anti-NATO Rant

Investigative journalist David Rohde, who serves as CNN’s global affairs analyst, on Thursday said Donald Trump adopted a “Kremlin talking point” in his conversation with NATO allies at the G7 summit.


Rohde told CNN’s Poppy Harlow that sitting down with Russian President Vladimir Putin is the “worst thing he can do,” calling it “politically reckless” and a “huge political risk.”

“His base supports him but he's going to inject Putin into the narrative as these midterms—I think he thinks it's the right thing to do but he's taking a huge risk,” Rohde said. “This is a very arrogant decision by him and its reckless.”

“It's a photo opportunity and the [Robert[ Mueller investigation is not over,” Rohde continued. “Ten members of his campaign and family have contacts with Russians during the campaign. His son, his son-in-law, his national security adviser, his campaign manager, his attorney general, two of his foreign policy advisers, so again, this narrative is going to return.”

“Why is he being so nice to Vladimir Putin?” Rohde asked.

Turning to an Axios report that Trump told NATO allies at the G7 summit that NATO Is “as bad as NAFTA,” Rohde said the Trump-Putin summit is “an insult to our nato allies.”

“They are petrified of Russia,” he explained. “Russia's meddled in elections in Europe and the U.S. So he's sort of adopting the entire Putin playbook. That's a Kremlin talking point about Crimea. Russia invaded another country. Seized its territory and Donald Trump is supporting that. Again, his supporters, it won't upset them but he's energizing his opponents with this rhetoric and decisions.”

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