Monday 16 July 2018

i would return to criticism that it wasn’t good enough—that i should have gotten saint petersburg in addition

After reducing relations between the United States and its NATO partners to the worst state since the founding of the alliance (calling the EU a “foe”), Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin convened for a private meeting in neutral Helsinki.
Uncertain about objectives or talking-points, I think that this event was orchestrated not only to inflame Europe but also to disrupt (maybe primarily) Amazon Prime Day—to uncut the press outlet owned by the same entities, which Trump again called the enemy of the people. In his preamble, Trump made no mention of the annexation of Crimea, treatment of dissenting voices, the proxy-wars in Syria and Iran or the broad subterfuge operation directed in order to skew outcomes in the US presidential and other elections as cause for tensions but instead choose to blame “many years of US foolishness and the stupidity, and now the Rigged Witch Hunt!” for strained relations characterised as never worse—eliding over the entire history of the Cold War and dashing hopes that Trump will make any demands of his Russian counterpart or again don the mantle of leadership befitting a super power, rather than stooping to elevate tyrants.