One of the things that’s been pretty clear for the better part of six months is this: Donald Trump had no idea what he was getting into when he (or someone in his campaign) decided it was a good idea to collude with the Kremlin.
I mean sometimes I don’t think it occurs to people exactly who it is they’re talking about when they talk about Vladimir Putin.
Everyone loves to make jokes about the ridiculous images you can find on Google of Putin firing guns, riding horses shirtless in the wilderness, body slamming people, etc., but amid the hilarity, it’s important to remember that this motherfucker is anything but a joke.
Remember, Putin was just 36 years old when, in 1989, he single-handedly saved the Dresden KGB office from an angry mob. First he burned the office’s important files and then, according to legend, he walked out the front door and pointed a pistol at the crowd while calmly explaining that the first motherfucker who tried to ransack the building was gettin’ shot.
Look that story up.
And then compare it to what Donald Trump was doing in 1989.
So that’s why people who actually know anything about foreign policy think this is such a precarious situation. You’ve got a complete buffoon that was born with a silver spoon in his mouth and went on to become a reality TV show host trying to collude with a guy who basically pulled an “Enzo The Baker” as the Berlin wall fell, only instead of pretending to have a gun and guarding one man in a hospital against 4 mobsters, “Enzo The Russian” actually had a gun and he was guarding a KGB office full of sensitive information against a rioting mob of East Germans.
How do you imagine the silver spoon/ reality TV show host is going to get treated in that arrangement?
Well on Wednesday, the Trump administration learned just how far out of their league they’re playing when first, Rex Tillerson was humiliated by Sergei Lavrov at a State Department presser and then, according to reports, the White House was blindsided by how the Russian government portrayed Trump’s meeting with Russia’s top diplomat.
When President Donald Trump hosted Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Oval Office on Wednesday just hours after firing the FBI director who was overseeing an investigation into whether Trump’s team colluded the Russians, he was breaking with recent precedent at the specific request of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The chummy White House visit—photos of the president yukking it up with Lavrov and Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak were released by the Russian Foreign Ministry since no U.S. press was allowed to cover the visit—had been one of Putin’s asks in his recent phone call with Trump, and indeed the White House acknowledged this to me later Wednesday. “He chose to receive him because Putin asked him to,” a White House spokesman said of Trump’s Lavrov meeting. “Putin did specifically ask on the call when they last talked.”
The meeting was Lavrov’s first in the White House since 2013—and came after several years of the Obama administration’s flat-out refusal to grant him an Oval Office audience, two former senior White House officials told me. “The Russians were begging us for years to do that,” one of the former officials said. “They were constantly pushing for it and we were constantly saying no.”
The images of Trump putting his arm genially on Lavrov’s back—and a later White House official readout of the meeting that said Trump “emphasized his desire to build a better relationship between the United States and Russia”—couldn’t have come at a more fraught political moment for Trump, amid a barrage of bipartisan criticism of his firing of FBI Director James Comey.
On Wednesday morning before meeting with Trump, Lavrov even cracked a joke about his hosts’ political predicament, laughingly claiming not to have heard of the Comey firing while standing alongside Trump’s secretary of state, Rex Tillerson.
In other words, Lavrov was right where he has always wanted to be Wednesday: mocking the United States while being welcomed in the Oval Office by the president himself.
Now, according to CNN and all kinds of other outlets, the White House is shocked – shocked – that they were effectively bamboozled.
More from The Telegraph:
The White House was reportedly misled over the Russian photographer who was present during the meeting between Donald Trump and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
When photos of the encounter emerged, US officials were said to be surprised because they had barred news media from attending the Oval Office meeting.
Not long afterwards, however, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted a photo of Mr Trump and Mr Lavrov shaking hands in the Oval Office.