How 'existential threat' Trump echoes 'war criminal'​ Putin’s talking points: foreign policy analyst

How 'existential threat' Trump echoes 'war criminal'​ Putin’s talking points: foreign policy analyst

In July 2018, only one month before his death, Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona slammed then-President Donald Trump for his “disgraceful” meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland. The conservative senator didn’t mince words, accusing Trump of making “a conscious choice to defend a tyrant” and showing “sympathy for autocrats.”

Two years have passed since Trump left the White House and Democrat Joe Biden was sworn in as U.S. president, and almost a year has passed since Russian forces, acting on Putin’s orders, launched a full-fledged invasion of Ukraine. Despite the invasion, Putin still has plenty of admirers in the MAGA movement. And foreign policy analyst David Rothkopf, in a scathing op-ed published by the Daily Beast on February 2, argues that “menace to society” Trump continues to echo “Russian government talking points.”

“To put it plainly,” Rothkopf says of Trump, “he’s repeatedly demonstrated that he’s an existential threat to the country, made flesh. In a social media post that coincided with Trump’s official 2024 campaign kickoff, the ex-president once again declared that he values the opinion of Russian tyrant Vladimir Putin more than those of the U.S. law enforcement and intelligence communities. He wrote, in part, ‘Remember in Helsinki when a 3rd rate reporter asked me, essentially, who I trusted more, President Putin of Russia or our intelligence lowlifes.’”

READ MORE:Donald Trump brags of trusting Vladimir Putin over 'misfits' in 'slime' American intelligence agencies

The journalist continues, “He then characterized U.S. intelligence and law enforcement leadership as consisting of ‘really bad people.’ He also used the word ‘slime’ to describe them. And then, he concluded, ‘Who would you choose, Putin or these Misfits?’”

Rothkopf, author of the 2020 book “Traitor: A History of Betraying America from Benedict Arnold to Donald Trump,” goes on to describe “Trump’s pal Putin” as “one of the world’s worst monsters, a war criminal, author of a brutal illegal war, and an outright enemy of the United States, our NATO allies, and everything they stand for.”

“By and large,” Rothkopf observes, “the Republican establishment has remained silent on Trump’s latest betrayal of his country. The GOP-led House is continuing with its plans to launch a committee investigating the ‘weaponization’ of government that will seek to undo, bury, or discredit investigations, such as those into Trump’s Russia ties. And over in the fever swamps of MAGA social media, voices that echo Trump’s views on Russia — and those attacking the positions of the U.S. government in Ukraine — are gaining prominence. This pro-Putin, pro-Trump chorus has the effect of validating what Trump peddles, no matter how outrageous — including wild attacks on western policies that come straight from Russian government talking points.”

READ MORE: Stephen Colbert called Trump 'Putin’s puppet' and slams Fox News over Capitol riots

Read David Rothkopf’s full op-ed for the Daily Beast at this link.

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