Trump, Tougher On Putin Than Obama

(I added a Facebook conversational response by myself at the bottom — JUMP)

Sebastian Gorka goes through a few items that is evidence against the idea that Trump is a Russian asset.

If you think Russia spent money to get Trump in office, that was the biggest waste of money in history.  Alternatively, if you think Putin has something on Trump, it has failed to dissuade Trump to act in Putin’s favor at all… Putin, then, would be the worse con-artist in history then.


Bullet Points


  • This admin reversed the policy of the Obama administration, which stood silently when Putin’s Russia annexed Crimea and attacked Ukraine. The Trump admin has sold the Ukrainians lethal defensive weaponry, including anti-tank missiles designed to destroy Putin’s Russian tanks in the hands of separatist rebels. (THE HILL)
  • The Trump administration has expelled 60 Russians, labeling them “spies” pretending to be diplomats. (DAILY WIRE)
  • About 300 men working for a Kremlin-linked Russian private military firm (many were Russian special operatives) were either killed (about 200) or injured in Syria on orders from the Trump administration (WASHINGTON TIMES)
  • Now, President Donald Trump approved sanctions on 38 different Russian companies and entities in response to Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, its presence in Ukraine, and support for the Assad regime in Syria. These entities include 7 Russian oligarchs, 12 companies they own and control, 17 Russian senior government officials, and a state owned Russian weapons trading company…. even sanctioning a member of Putin’s family. (DAILY CALLER)
  • President Trump is pressuring Germany to stop paying Russia BILLIONS of dollars a year via the gas-pipeline deal (YOUTUBE).
  • Donald Trump employed jawboning to persuade, arm-twist, and threaten NATO member-states if they didn’t raise the level of their spending on defense…. “by the end of next year, NATO allies will add hundred – 100 billion extra U.S. dollars toward defense.” (FOX)
  • The Obama Administration worked unsuccessfully to persuade the Kremlin to stand down the program through diplomatic talks. The Trump Administration, in contrast, directly confronted the violation by funding development of its own missile. The research is allowed under the INF (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty), and only breaches the deal if that missile is ever tested or deployed (TIME). “We’ll have to develop those weapons, unless Russia comes to us and China comes to us and they all come to us and say let’s really get smart and let’s none of us develop those weapons, but if Russia’s doing it and if China’s doing it, and we’re adhering to the agreement, that’s unacceptable,” Trump told reporters (DAILYWIRE).
  • After Sergei Skripal’s poisoning, US exports to Russia that could have military uses — so-called dual use technologies, are cut off completely (CNN)
  • President Trump signed an executive order to improve America’s critical infrastructure against electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attacks. (EPOCH TIMES)
  • President Donald Trump called on Russia to pull its troops out of Venezuela on March 27, following reports that two Russian military planes touched down in Caracas over the weekend with about 100 soldiers aboard. “Russia has to get out,”…. President Donald Trump’s national security adviser warned Russia on Friday about its military presence in Venezuela, saying any move to establish or expand operations there would be considered a “direct threat” to international peace.(EPOCH TIMES | REUTERS)
  • when oil prices rise above $60-$65 a barrel… fracking increases supply, serving as an effective cap on energy prices. (Broadly speaking, the same principle is true of natural gas prices.) Putin’s government revenue and foreign policy are dependent on high crude prices and foreign nations buying their crude from Russia. Lower prices due to U.S. or other nations’ competition cost him a lot of money, and put the Russian economy and his public support at risk. Even more importantly, it deprives him of the tool of energy blackmail, which he has used to extort other countries into adopting Kremlin-friendly foreign policy choices. This is why Russian intelligence services have been so active in supporting western environmental groups and other interests opposed to fracking. (WASHINGTON EXAMINERin other words, our energy policy, under Trump, is anti-Putin. By contrast, ALL of the Democratic 2020 candidates energy policies will enrich Putin.)
    • …the truth remains: Democrats are Russian President Vladimir Putin’s best allies. The anti-fossil fuel energy policy promoted by Democrats aligns perfectly with Russia’s economic needs. Russia is highly dependent on fossil fuel exports for revenue, and competition from the U.S.’s vast energy natural resources poses a direct threat to Putin. Restrictions on the development and use of coal, oil, and natural gas resources through heavy-handed federal regulations are the ideal U.S. policy for Putin. Limits on fossil fuel development and regulation were the foundation of Obama’s energy policy, and Clinton did not deviate far from her prior boss’ platform. As with Obama, climate change was the cornerstone of Clinton’s proposed energy policy, and she supported Obama’s war on coal and also sought to replace fossil fuels with so-called “clean energy.” To the dismay of Democrats and Putin, President Trump wants the U.S. to be an energy superpower, and his policies are unleashing our energy natural resources by reducing regulations and opening up areas for development. When President Trump decided to pull the U.S. out of the United Nations’ Paris climate accord, he was blasted by a choir of left-wing politicians, environmental activists, and the agenda driven liberal media. [….] Climate change, blocking pipeline construction, and stopping development of natural gas through fracking were the top priorities of the social media effort under accounts created by the Internet Research Agency in Russia, the same company special counsel Robert Mueller indicted for interfering with the 2016 presidential election. Previously, news reports discussed the possibility that environmental activist groups are being funneled Russian funds to promote government adoption of anti-fossil fuel policies. Clinton and Obama are by far not the only Democrats acting as Putin’s energy useful idiots. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo banned fracking in the state, and his Department of Environmental Conservation has so far blocked the construction of the Constitution Pipeline by denying a water permit to allow the project to move forward. The Constitution Pipeline would transport natural gas from Pennsylvania to upstate New York. New England is running an extreme anti-fossil fuel energy policy that is starving the region of cheap and reliable energy. During last winter’s cold snap, New England’s inadequate natural gas pipeline infrastructure reached its limit, and the region’s power was supplemented by liquefied natural gas from Russia. The pro-fossil fuel energy policy advanced by President Trump is being used to challenge Russia. President Trump is confronting Russia’s energy dominance in eastern Europe by exporting liquefied natural gas to Poland and the Baltic states. In addition, the U.S. is actively trying to stop the Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia to Germany. When it comes to energy policy, Putin and Democrats are on the same team…. (NEWSMAX)
    • …The strategic implications if the Russian lock on those markets is broken are lost on no one, least of all Putin. His economy is dependent on gas and oil exports, and 76 percent of the gas he pipes out of Russia goes to Germany, Turkey, Italy, France, Britain and other European countries. Already, the fracking revolution in the United States threatens Russian dominance on several fronts. In the last six years, the Americans have become the world’s biggest producer of natural gas, which costs in the United States a small fraction of what it costs in Europe or Asia. The result has been a massive conversion of electrical power generation from coal to gas in the United States; strong economic incentives for manufacturers to bring their factories back onshore; and newly revived American power in the international energy marketplace. Facilities that, ten years ago, were being built to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the United States are now being converted to export it. Moscow tried hard to downplay the challenge. Just a year ago, Alexei Miller, chairman of the Russian energy behemoth Gazprom, said he thought the American shale gas production was “unprofitable” and the boom in the United States would prove to be a “bubble.” But others in his company admitted that after Gazprom had spent hundreds of billions of dollars to develop fields in the Arctic around the Barents Sea, with the idea the gas there would be sold to North America, that market just dried up: the Americans didn’t need the Russian supply anymore…. (THE DAILY BEAST)
    • …The fact that Kremlin opposition to European fracking has nothing to do with environmental concerns should be clear even to the dullest among us, because Russia has massive fracking projects of its own underway in Siberia. The real goal is to keep Europe dependent upon Russia for its fuel supply. Natural-gas prices in Europe are quadruple those prevailing in the United States, and by maintaining a near-monopoly on overpriced European natural-gas imports, the Putin regime assures itself of a vast source of revenue. This allows it to rule and rearm Russia without permitting the freedom necessary to develop the country’s human potential. Furthermore, so long as Europe is kept critically dependent upon Russia for fuel, Moscow can paralyze and render ineffective any Western response to its plans for conquest, whose initial steps are currently being demonstrated in Ukraine. More, and much worse, is certain to follow so long as Europe remains helpless. In a recent four-hour television appearance in Moscow, Putin explicitly embraced Kremlin fascist ideologue Alexander Dugin’s grand design of creating a united totalitarian Eurasia, “from Lisbon to Vladivostok.” If he can maintain control of Europe’s critical fuel supplies, he just might be able to pull it off. So it should come as no surprise that the Putin regime is pulling out all the stops in fomenting the global anti-fracking movement, with Europe as its central target. Leading the propaganda campaign has been RT News, Russia’s state-owned television network, which broadcasts around the world in English and other languages…. (NATIONAL REVIEW)
  • The United States is flexing its military muscles as a powerful warning to Russia. CNN’s Frederik Pleitgen got exclusive access as US warships started their own show of force in the Mediterranean Sea (YOUTUBE).
  • The Trump administration is taking dramatic steps to revamp the nation’s arsenal and prepare for a theoretical nuclear war with Russia in Eastern Europe…. The Pentagon last week took a major step forward by fielding its first new nuclear warhead in decades…. Analysts say that is just the first move in a grand long-term nuclear strategy to counter Russia and contend with an ambitious China(WASHINGTON TIMES)

  • The End


    Here is HUGH HEWITT noting some of the above and more:

    Hell of a MOLE” who gets sequester rolled back so DOD can rebuild,  demands NATO increase defense spending, provides lethal weapons to Ukraine, has American military wipe out a Russian force of irregulars in Syria, and urges Russia pipeline to Germany be cancelled (Hewitt: TWITTER) | The @realDonaldTrump-as-Russian-mole theory also must include that he has successfully fooled fmr SecDef Mattis, @SecPompeo @AmbJohnBolton.  Helluva spy.

    If Putin paid for Trump, Trump is a smart mother-effer, because he first used Russian interests to get the White House, and then immediately turned on Russia’s interests.

    Putin, then, is an idiot, and Trump? The smart-as-hell-tactician.

    THE ENTIRE 3-HOURS is magnificent. I wish all Republicans pushed back like this. The truth is on our side!

    THE FEDERALIST updated this post:

    “Just Like Obama, Trump’s Russia Policy Speaks Louder Than His Words”

    ….The Helsinki summit did not change my view of the Russian president. As I have reiterated many times, Putin is pure evil. There is no doubt in my mind that U.S. intelligence agencies arrived at the correct conclusion: Russia did meddle in the U.S. 2016 election, and Putin himself directed the operation. Again, I speak from personal experience on this topic: In 2012, Russian intelligence services interfered in the Georgian parliamentary elections, boosting the Kremlin’s preferred candidate through disinformation operations.

    Thus, my opinion of President Trump’s policy vis-à-vis Russia is perhaps more positive than one might assume from my background. My reasoning is two-fold: After a lifetime of firsthand experience with Russian aggression, I must evaluate Trump’s actions against the proper historical context. In doing so, I have found that Trump’s actions speak for themselves.

    The Outrage Seems Selective

    On the first point, I consider it unfair that Trump’s performance in Helsinki has garnered harsher criticism than other incidents in recent memory. In 2012, for example, a hot microphone at a global nuclear security summit picked up then-President Barack Obama assuring Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that he would have “more flexibility” to negotiate with Putin after the presidential election.

    During a debate with GOP opponent Mitt Romney the same year, Obama casually dismissed the Russian threat, quipping: “The 1980s called; they want their foreign policy back.” Although Trump could certainly have been more forceful by condemning Putin’s crimes, his statements at the Helsinki press conference were nowhere near as concerning as his predecessor’s remarks about Russia.

    This brings me to my second point: Trump’s actions toward Russia speak louder than words—and so did his predecessor’s. Indeed, the Obama administration’s foreign policy undermined America’s credibility in my region, which Putin considers Russia’s “backyard.” There are many opinions about Trump’s rhetoric on Crimea, but it is a fact that the Russian land grab in Ukraine happened on Obama’s watch.

    How, exactly, did this happen? During and after Ukraine’s revolution of 2014, which ousted a Kremlin-backed dictator, on a daily basis the United States cautioned Ukraine not to escalate in response to Russian aggression. Thus, Putin saw an opportunity to annex Crimea without risking a direct confrontation with the West—and he seized it. Putin is a bully, but not a fool.

    What a Difference Two Years Makes

    Rather than changing his course after Moscow redrew the borders of Europe by force, Obama doubled down. Despite bipartisan consensus in favor of selling lethal defensive weapons to Ukraine, and vocal support from his own administration officials (including Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton), Obama repeatedly refused to authorize the sales.

    Instead of anti-tank weapons, the Ukrainians defending their territory from Russian invasion received hot blankets and canned goods from the Obama administration. At the same time, Obama asserted that the Ukraine conflict had “no military solution.” With these words—and more importantly, these actions—he was perceived by some on the Russian side as accepting the Kremlin’s sphere of influence in Ukraine.

    Despite my warnings, the Obama administration also essentially turned a blind eye to Russian meddling in Georgia’s 2012 elections. The result was devastating not only for Georgia, but for American interests: A Kremlin-backed oligarch (who has substantial interests in Russian energy firm Gazprom) ascended to power in a strategic U.S. ally. Moreover, Russia’s meddling in Georgia’s elections functioned as a proving ground for information operations later used in the United States. To his credit, Obama accepted this reality in 2016, when he expelled dozens of Russian diplomats, but this response was too little, too late.

    By contrast, Trump authorized the sale of lethal defensive weapons to both Ukraine and Georgia in 2017. The Trump administration went beyond the congressional mandate in sanctioning Russian authorities involved in the annexation of Crimea. Earlier this year, the United States imposed the harshest sanctions yet, targeting Russian oligarchs as well as government officials.

    Trump’s rhetoric on energy at the Helsinki summit, which has been largely overlooked, is also a reason for optimism. The backbone of the Russian economy is energy, and Russia’s dependence on fossil fuels is Putin’s Achilles heel. At Monday’s press conference, Trump stated that U.S. liquefied natural gas exports would “compete” with Russian gas in Europe. This reflects Trump’s comments at the NATO summit, where he criticized Germany for supporting the Nord Stream II pipeline. Trump was correct to call attention to this project, which will enrich the Kremlin at the expense of struggling pro-Western allies like Ukraine…..


    Stuff That Didn’t Age Well


    If there was one thing I have learned over the years of attacks against Bush over eight years, and now Trump… the rule of thumb is to wait about a week (or more) for the truth of the situation to come out. This is a prime example. Many who have a visceral hatred for Trump immediately jump on the band wagon [just like BDS, Bush Derangement Syndrome — there is TDS, Trump Derangement Syndrome]… and… the below meme is a prime example.

    During conversation with a Facebook friend about a meme posted regarding the Dianne Feinstein with Attorney General Bill Barr, I linked the FULL exchange to the exchange. After some talk, the below meme was posted:

    Not a day after he posted the above, a writer I check in with daily had this post, entitled: “NBC NEWS MAKES CORRECTION TO TRUMP-PUTIN STORY.” In it she notes:

    After incorrectly reporting that President Trump had discussed former White House counsel Don McGhan’s potential testimony in the House with Russian President Vladimir Putin, NBC News was forced to issue a correction:

    CORRECTION (May 3,2019, 1:51 p.m. ET): An earlier version of this article incorrectly included one topic that White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Presidents Trump and Putin discussed on Friday. They did not discuss the possibility of former White House counsel Don McGahn appearing before Congress. Sanders was answering a question from reporters about whether McGahn would testify before Congress.

    HILARIOUS. I bet “unnamed sources” are at the center of this story. You can add this to the TRUMP IS CHUMMY WITH PUTIN conspiracy the Left and NeverTrumpers have:

    Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said the U.S. has a full range of options available to help oust Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and didn’t rule out “ultimately” using military action on top of diplomatic, political and other pressure points.

    “We’re preparing those for him so that when the situation arises, we’re not flat-footed,’’ Pompeo said on ABC’s “This Week,” one of three scheduled appearances on Sunday morning political shows.

    [….]

    Trump on Friday said Russian President Vladimir Putin assured him he isn’t seeking to “get involved” in the crisis, although Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton both said earlier in the week that the Kremlin talked Maduro out of leaving Venezuela after U.S.-backed Guaido attempted to end his regime by calling for a military uprising.

    “The president has made clear, we want everyone out, and that includes the Russians,” Pompeo said.

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