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Saturday, February 24, 2018

Trump and Putin are on the way to a great deal


The message about the upcoming meeting trump and Putin in Iceland was quickly refuted in the US and in Russia, but this does not mean that preparations for the meeting of the presidents is not on the unofficial level. The summit will take place not only acquaintance of the two leaders, but will attempt to agree on the “big deal”. What he wants trump Putin, and Putin from trump?

Appeared in The Sunday Times, the information that Donald trump plans to hold a summit with Vladimir Putin in Reykjavik, not true. The British newspaper wrote that within a few weeks after the inauguration of the new President intends to go to his first foreign trip to meet with the President of Russia in the capital of Iceland.

“Trump and configured to have a Frank conversation with Putin, and a great bargain”

The publication cited an unnamed British politicians, who learned about the upcoming meeting of the environment trump – but soon followed by energetic denials. Two high-ranking assistant to the elected President on the condition of anonymity declared to Agency Bloomberg that this is not so – while one of them called the information “wholly erroneous”. Denied a “leak” and the press Secretary of Putin – Peskov said, “as long as neither any agreement nor any outline or some kind of preparation for the meeting is not conducted, because the President and Mr. trump as long as it does not discussed”.

While it is clear that nothing else, no one to tell and could not, trump has not yet assumed office, the only official contact between the two leaders took place two months ago, when Putin called President-elect. The other day will be a new conversation – it already announced and a representative of the transition team trump Sean Spicer, Dmitry Peskov, said that “it can be expected that the Russian President will congratulate Mr trump with the inauguration, it is customary practice Protocol”.

Actually, officially start the negotiations about the date and place of future meeting and in the coming weeks we can expect the reports of their results. There is no doubt that the meeting will be held in the next couple of months – because both sides are in no mood to dilly-dally.

Trump said recently in an interview with The Wall Street Journal that he is ready to meet with Vladimir Putin after some time after they enter into the office of the President: “I understand that they would like to meet. And I do not mind”. The trump at the end of October, i.e. before his election victory, said that does not preclude his meeting with Putin before his inauguration, then there was a hurried event. After the 20th they agree on the time and place – and though hardly now the summit will be held in Reykjavik (even if this actually was discussed), the choice of the venue will not be particularly difficult.

Based on the overall geopolitical situation, the two leaders would be logical to meet in the Pacific – that is where our countries border each other, on the East the unfolding Russia, there is China, which is now actively mocks trump. All anything, here only in this region there is no suitable places to meet – according to informal tradition of such a meeting should take place in a small neutral country, and there is virtually no such. Not to meet at the Sultan in Brunei.

Option with Iceland already began to frighten the nervous and illiterate readers – say, it was there in 1986, Gorbachev gave Reagan everything. Of course, it’s not – unjustified geopolitical concessions associated with the meeting in Malta, which was in 1989, not with Reagan and Bush senior. And the situation is now largely mirror is in the United States comes the “new thinking”, albeit not naively stupid, as we do, but still associated with the rethinking of the role of their country in the world.

The timing of the first meeting will also be decided quickly enough. Not only because there is a war in Syria – trump is already so heavily criticized for the intention to “get along” with Putin, there is no reason to postpone personal acquaintance. In fact, parties will only need to exchange visits Lavrov and Tillerson – this part can also be compressed to minimal time.

The fact is that, contrary to the usual practice is neither necessary nor, more importantly, the possibilities in detail to agree on the agenda of the first meeting – because the trump brand is atypical of a President with a completely atypical approach and openly stated intention to conduct an audit of all areas of US foreign policy. No, of course, the state Department and all intelligence agencies will conduct all the necessary preparatory work – here only to sense in it a little.

So even Tillerson’s visit to Moscow, and Lavrov in Washington, can be optional: all or one of these trip (and, most likely, the American Secretary of state), or even a meeting of the heads of the two MFA somewhere in Europe or in the comer of the international conference. In the fastest case, the card will be sent to Moscow, General Flynn.

Regarding the timing – it is clear that the meeting will be held before the G20 summit, which is scheduled for early July in Hamburg. Meet at the “big twenty” – or the one immediately preceding her separate summit – not the best, and too much option. Not to mention the fact that the mistress of the G20 will be Merkel – which has soured relations with Putin and has not yet built a relationship with trump. In a Monday interview with the Times and Bild trump directly asked: “Who do you trust – Angela Merkel or Vladimir Putin?” The answer was simple: “While I trust both but we’ll see how long that lasts. May not be long.”

These words as spoken in this interview reasoning about the connection between nuclear arms reductions and the lifting of sanctions against Russia, has become an occasion for another insightful discussion on the topic “Agree with trump Putin will be able only with great concessions.”

This position is well known – supposedly trump will be even more difficult “partner” than Obama, and begin to condition the improvement of us-Russian relations in various concessions from Russia on Iran, China, Ukraine, Syria and nuclear weapons. So – and here is manifested the difference between the two types of pessimists alarmists – “all is lost” Putin, like Gorbachev, will pass to the West all “acquired by overwork” (of course, because of the desire to return to the ranks of the “Golden billion” and the “Western elite”), or, conversely, refuse to trade national interests, with the result that the two countries will roll for even tougher confrontations. Despite a certain exaggeration, both these positions are quite common in Russian public opinion – which, of course, scares.

Scary because they are based on a completely wild idea how about trump and about Putin as about the relationship between the two powers, and the current arrangement of the figures on the global geopolitical chessboard.

Really, trump, continuing to repeat his desire to get along and to negotiate with Russia, gradually tightening its rhetoric – and even says that will maintain in force the sanctions imposed by the Obama administration, “at least for some time.” But we must not forget two fundamental points.

First, trump constantly asked about how he will behave with Russia – in fact, don’t even ask and blame and accuse intention to talk to “a tyrant who attacked our electoral system”. And how much would trump any fun trying to play against a Russian map, reached in the latest “dossier of incriminating Russian” already indecently low level, he still has to defend. And with all this he continues to stick to their line that most American media clearly interprets as a willingness to improve relations between the two countries.

“If you get along with Russia if Russia will actually help us, then why keep sanctions against those who are doing some wonderful things?” is a recent interview trump The Wall Street Journal. And here is his answer to the question the European media about whether it supports “the European sanctions against Russia”:

“I believe that people should get along with each other and do what they need to do to be honest. Okay? You have imposed sanctions against Russia – let’s see if we can make some good deals with Russia. On the one hand, I think that should be a lot less nuclear weapons and its need to significantly reduce, it belongs here too. But there are these sanctions, and Russia currently suffers greatly from them. But I think that may be something which will benefit many people”.

It is obvious that trump does not make the lifting of European sanctions dependent on the United States and Russia on reducing nuclear weapons – he just talks about whether it is possible to reach different agreements with Russia. So trump and configured to have a Frank conversation with Putin, and a great bargain. First just take place to find out the conditions and the possibility of a second.

Secondly, trump is reviewing the entire U.S. foreign policy – that is, not of its individual elements, and the entire complex. Because he believes that “America first” for the Americans, not for the idol of globalization. The way in which he will seek to lift the U.S. economy – and with it, and the strengthening of American power, including military, it is not typical for conventional politicians. But “ordinary politics” has brought US as a national state to a standstill. And trump is going to change the rules. When the Europeans reproached him that he threatens all – China and Germany – a huge duty, and therefore, does not believe in free trade, trump said:

“No, I believe in free trade and love it, but it must be a smart trade to be called honest. And then I said to the people: “do You want a conservative or a person that will conclude a great deal?” And they cried out, “Great transaction, great deal!” They still – they have no labels. So who cares? I am a conservative, but really my goal is to get a good deal in the interests of the people, that they had a job. People don’t care when you say… They don’t care – they want a good deal. You know what? They want to get back their jobs”

That is, trump is an absolute pragmatist and nationalist – in the sense that anti-globalization. And the way he will achieve for US “the best conditions for a good deal”, not typical, but understandable – this is a complete revision of virtually all American foreign policy. Trump wants to play on existing contradictions in the world – in order to balance (commercial, geopolitical) began to change in the American favor. Does this mean that Russia is doomed to the ongoing confrontation with the United States?

No, because trump is going to play not just in new and fundamentally different game – not within the Atlantic of globalization and within the framework of national States. That is not a zero-sum game when there is only one leader, he is a dictator, he is a monopolist and Builder of the planetary Empire, and in a game where fighting the various forces and interests, which sought a certain balance of forces. Yes, this balance will be achieved through a hard struggle – but it has nothing to do with the “winner takes all”. This Westphalian system, not a unipolar world.

If you look, trump has questioned all the key areas – from relationships with the nearest neighbor, Mexico, to relations with the Islamic world (to close the entrance for Muslims to move the Embassy to Jerusalem – which is a direct challenge to the entire Muslim world), from the Atlantic solidarity (NATO obsolete, and Pexit was correct) to the Iranian deal. In relations with China, trump said anything absolutely unacceptable things – casts doubt on the principle of “one China,” which is based on the whole complex of relations between the two countries. And the desire to get along with Putin – is in many ways exactly the same game on contradictions.

Does this mean that trump is crazy dangerous? Of course not – he just looks at the inheritance left him with the perspective of a resident of the United States, not ruler of the Universe. Looking for his homespun American benefit, really wants to return to his own country to its former glory – and so, Putin at least have something to talk to him.

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