(July 29) If President Trump wants people to stop saying he’s a stooge for Russian’s Vladimir Putin, he should stop serving Putin’s interests.

Trump gave Putin two major gifts in the last two days alone, one substantive and one propagandistic. Neither gift was remotely warranted. Both gifts harm U.S. interests.

The substantive gift was the removal of thousands of U.S. troops from bases in Germany, while the public relations donation involved policy in Afghanistan. Let’s take the latter first.

The latest of many propaganda victories Trump has afforded the murderous Russian dictator came in an interview he did July 28 with Jonathan Swan of Axios on HBO. While Trump deflected numerous questions about whether Russia had offered “bounties” to the Taliban to kill American personnel, Swan specifically noted the uncontroverted reports that Russia did supply arms to the Taliban, regardless. As the Taliban has repeatedly attacked U.S. forces, Swan asked, shouldn’t Trump at least object to Putin about that? Bounty or no bounty, isn’t Russia’s arming of the Taliban a direct affront to U.S. interests and to peace?

Astonishingly, Trump excused Russia’s perfidy, essentially by saying the United States was just as bad.

“Well, we supplied weapons when [Afghanis] were fighting Russia too,” Trump said.

This is inane. When the U.S. supplied weapons to the proud mujaheddin, who certainly were not co-extensive with the Taliban, by the way, it was to help Afghanistan expel brutal Soviet forces working to conquer Afghanistan for communist hegemony. There was no good reason for Russia to be there, murdering Afghanis by the thousands.

The U.S., on the other hand, entered Afghanistan while defending itself and the world from Islamist terrorists. Whatever this wisdom of still being there, we are there not for conquest but in defense, while at the same time assisting a legitimate government and massively aid that country’s civil society. Our goals are profoundly moral, while the Soviet’s goals were evil. Russia’s current embrace of the Taliban, too, is evil: The Taliban is one of the world’s most vicious regimes….

[The rest of the column is here.]

By the way, the conservative stalwart legal expert Andrew McCarthy, who often finds himself defending Trump, had a very similar take to mine. Here, please read Andy at this link.


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