November 17, 2017

President Trump's trust in Putin questionable | Letters

15 November 2017, 02:22 | Glen Norman

Kremlin dismisses ex-CIA chief's assumptions that Trump 'was intimidated' by Putin

Trump was played by Putin? Not compared to Obama

"Iran has never had a better friend than Obama", Donald Trump tweeted in December 2013, as USA negotiators were finalizing a deal with Iran over the country's nuclear program.

Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign leader, and his associate, Rick Gates, were asked to surrender themselves to federal authorities to face charges over allegedly laundering millions of dollars for work they were doing on behalf of a pro-Kremlin political party in Ukraine.

In Tokyo, no sooner did Trump's plane leave the tarmac than the finance minister declared that "We won't do an FTA". Obama's insistence on crediting the words of Iran's leaders, coupled with his barely concealed antipathy to Israel and contempt for all contrary evidence, was by turns laughable and appalling. Trump had much to say Saturday about last week's smiles and handshakes with Putin and repeated denials of interference in the US from the former KGB spymaster. Or at least to make an effort not to sound weak and naïve.

Although relations are still "in a state of crisis", Moscow is ready "to turn the page and move on, look into the future and solve problems important both to the people of the U.S. and Russian Federation". Got that? Mr. Trump thinks Mr. Putin believed what he said.

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We already know Trump has a tendency to repeat the last thing he heard, and he has a well-documented history of believing all kinds of cockamamie theories. "And this artificial Democratic hit job gets in the way".

Anyway, I almost spit out my drink when I heard that Trump concluded last week, after being told by Putin that Russian hackers did not meddle in the 2016 USA presidential election, that Putin must be telling the truth because he (Putin, that is) said so in a way that Trump felt was honest. Is he that gullible?

"I'm with our agencies, especially as now constituted with their leadership", Trump said.

"Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me 'old, ' when I would NEVER call him 'short and fat?' Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend - and maybe someday that will happen!"

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At the time, Stalin had been waging war on his own peasantry for most of a decade, in his zeal to collectivize the agricultural sector while at the same time industrializing the Soviet economy in order to compete with Europe and the U.S. Speier said Trump's attitude is rooted in his election victory over Hillary Clinton. "He did not do what they were saying he did".

"What do you mean you believe him?". This is a contradiction to all the information that our intelligence agencies have amassed. On the flight back from Vietnam, Trump called the former intelligence agency heads who spoke out against him "political hacks". On Twitter, Trump referred to those opposing his Russian Federation outreach as "haters and fools". This is why top intelligence officials appointed by Trump have confirmed those findings.

The Vedomosti business newspaper reported over the weekend that all foreign media in Russian Federation could be affected by the move, which would impose the same reporting and disclosure requirements on media outlets that were included in a 2012 crackdown on foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) operating in the country.

At the same forum, CIA Director Mike Pompeo was asked whether Russian Federation intervened in the 2016 election.

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