There’s simply no stance an American politician can take that is more of a slam dunk than being anti-Putin. Russia’s kleptocratic President is unapologetically anti-American, deceitful, and actually a bit of a murderer. He refuses to abide by international law and utilizes regional destabilization as Russia’s primary vehicle for relevancy.
Donald Trump, unfortunately, does not seem to have gotten the memo. This guy has heaped praise on the Russian President throughout the election cycle and seems immune to suggestions of Putin’s brutality.
“I think that I would probably get along with him very well. And I don’t think you’d be having the kind of problems that you’re having right now.” –Trump 10/11/2015
“He’s running his country and at least he’s a leader, unlike what we have in this country.”-Trump 12/19/2015
Before I get to exactly why Trump’s embrace of Putin is so frightening, it is important to note some of the things that fall under the umbrella of Putin “running his country.”
- Murdering at least 34 journalists that were critical of Putin’s regime
- Murdering numerous other political dissenters
- Supporting a Syrian dictator known to use chemical weapons on his own citizens
- Criminalizing public displays of homosexuality
- Regularly promoting anti-American sentiment within the Russian population
- And just generally being an undemocratic thug
If Trump is unaware of Putin’s rejection of basic human rights, then that speaks volumes about the shallowness of his understanding of international politics and his lack of fitness for the role of Commander in Chief.
If he is aware, but still believes that getting along well with such a man is in America’s best interest, then he is perhaps even more unfit to represent our nation.
Perhaps Roosevelt could have gotten along well with Hitler. Perhaps Truman could have gotten along with Stalin. Perhaps Reagan could have gotten along well with the pre-Gorbachev Soviet leaders. They very well could have, but if they had, our moral authority would have failed.
These leaders understood that America has principles and our friendship must be earned. They did not praise the strength of our enemies or turn blind eyes to their transgressions. They spoke out. They condemned.
This guy who wants to be our President is either ignorant to the truth about one of our chief antagonists or indifferent to the importance of American moral authority. Either way, we cannot allow his bromance with Putin to reach any further than the cable news circuit.