I have to admit this is the scenario that intrigues me the most. I almost titled this after the 1966 movie “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming”. I restrained myself. I have been looking at the Trump/Russian connection for over 2 years, maybe close to three. There is so much possible in this scenario I have to remind people, these are only patterns that I saw as I worked through my own anxiety. They may happen, they may very well not. Either way, this proposed set of circumstances, causes and actions is fascinating. It reads like, well, like a Russian novel.
First we have to ask, ‘Why?’ Why would a such a bizarre collaboration exist? The reason most likely for Trump being involved with Russia, Russian business men, or Putin is, of course, business. Or more likely, debt.
There have been rumblings, hints and questions about Trump and his association with Russia for some time. Links at first were tenuous, things that just didn’t sit right, or left more questions than answers. One of these is the sale of the Trump estate in Palm Beach. The property sold in 2008 in an off market deal to Russian billionaire, Dmitry Rybolovlev, for 95 million dollars set records. Trump walked away with a tidy profit from the property, which he had purchased at auction for approximately 41 million dollars. A Russian contact, but tenuous, at best.
More importantly was Trump’s insistence on his admiration for Vladimir Putin. This isn’t a tremendous surprise, after all he also reads Hitler, and likes Kim Jong-un. He even called for Russian hackers to infiltrate Hillary’s own email and the DNC. Which, it turns out, the Russians did hack the DNC.
And then there is that lingering question of debt. By not releasing his tax returns Trump does not dispel or answer any questions. Indeed, by refusing, and being the first candidate in decades to do so, he furthers the supposition that he could be in serious debt. Debt would be a crippling compromise of any candidate, let alone one for the highest office. To say the least, this is uncomfortable.
Moving further down the pathway there was the events of the debates where Trump seemed to know the contents of information posted on Russian web sites before anyone else. The disclosure by Secretary Clinton that 17 federal agencies were convinced that Russian hackers were targeting the US in an effort to influence the election.
Then there are the events of just the past week. The Russian parliament bursting into cheers when Trump was elected. A flat admission by a Russian spokesman for Vladimir Putin on Nov. 10 confirmed that Russian experts were talking to members of Trump’s camp. Well, that seems to seal the deal.
So what does this mean for a Trump presidency. Well, it might be more accurately called a Putin presidency c/o Trump, but that just makes me completely knot up inside. And it should. Of all the models we have spoken of so-far Putin lines up with the Dictator. But, there is another model that suits Putin better, and we’ll get to it, the Cappo. Moving back to Trump, what might we expect to see.
We might expect to see Trump echoing Putin’s goals. The threats to our participation in NATO may be followed through.
To be fair, the rhetoric from Trump that he wants to be friendly with Russia should be welcome. Fighting terrorism side-by-side is a lovely thought. And to remember back eight years, President Obama started his first term in office with similarly lofty goals. This is the difference I imagine between the two presidencies. Where Russian/American relations under Obama soured over the land grab in the Crimea and human rights violations, I don’t feel that would happen under a Trump presidency. A land snatch by Putin would be tacitly applauded, and I imagine Trump eying Mexico and parts of Canada wishing he could do the same.
Most of the actions down this pathway are international in context. Breaking treaties, hanging allies out to defend themselves, the withdrawal of troops, or extortion of vulnerable nations to maintain our presence. Trade would be disrupted with tariffs and protectionist strategies. It could be the start of a new period of isolationism, and the loss of presence and power for the United States in the international sphere.
There would still be some internal actions. Domestic policy would be tightened. Travel to other nations would likely be restricted. Immigration would be brought to a stand-still. Essentially any tie to the world would be attempted to be cut. The United Nations would leave New York. Isolationism would cut both ways, Trump could keep immigrants out of the nation, but it also keeps citizens, or at least their assets in the nation.
All of this depends on the Supreme Court, and Congress. Will they prove to be the checks-and-balances of our system that they were designed to be? I certainly hope so. And, I have to have faith that the conscience of individuals, in both parties, will look to keeping this nation safe and secure, from all threats both foreign and domestic.