It requires little in the way of foreign policy study or experience to understand that Russia’s foremost priority has been to erode if not destroy the alliance of Western democracies whose creation began to take shape even before the closing days of World War II.  Even before Hitler’s destruction became inevitable, Churchill and Roosevelt began to plan a democratic détente that would confine the Soviet Union and make the world, or at least the European part of it, safe for democracy.

After 70 years of patient waiting, Russia’s wait is paying off.

Now the cornerstone of the Western Alliance, the British-U.S. special relationship is eroding due to Brexit, shared anti-immigration grievances, the rise of right wing nationalism, and distrust of alliances generally.

Similarly, U.S. relations with Germany, France, and Italy, among others, are being casually neglected.

And most dangerously, American reliance on traditional diplomacy to maintain and foster close relations with traditional allies is being trash-canned for no apparent reason.  If there is a central organizing principle behind the willful dismantling of security, trade, environment, and a host of international regulatory structures (transportation, communications, banking, and other arenas) it seems to be this: We’re Americans.  To hell with you.

The current Administration has offered no rationale for this nose-thumbing attitude—it does not rise to the level of policy.

There is irrefutably only one beneficiary from all this, and it is not future generations of Americans.  It is Russia.

It does not require Sherlock Holmes to reach this conclusion.

Defenders of this Administration’s irrational behavior seem nonplussed that anyone, including seasoned diplomats, should question a President who breaks up decades of careful, thoughtful, and effective management of world affairs and who replaces stability every dawn like a child with a hammer in a pottery factory.

Why wouldn’t thoughtful people, with expanding evidence at hand, conclude that Russia had a direct and immediate interest in seeing this President elected.  It is the unexpected culmination of all its dreams.  This President is single-handedly giving Russia everything it wants.

The truth of whether there was collusion between the Russian government and the Trump campaign will come out later, if not sooner.  Still, for unexplained reasons Mr. Trump himself and family and supporters around him began very early in his improbably campaign taking a Republican Party normally apoplectic toward Russia right into the inner sanctum of the Kremlin.

Why?  Doesn’t take much to figure it out.

6 Responses to “Russia (and America) Versus the West”

  1. Brian McCarthy Says:

    Senator; I think sometimes that if you had become president, Mikhail Gorbachev would’ve attended the inauguration and a comprehensive program for ending the Cold War would have followed. Well, the Cold War ended nonetheless, but what is better for it? It’s 2017 and we are talking about whether Russia controlled the outcome of our 2016 election. The Olympics have just banned Russia from participation in the 2018 Winter Olympics. Who cares about that, if they actually put the current cretin in the White House? This is all speculation – the problem is that the person most Americans vote for doesn’t become president. Can we even claim to be a democracy?

  2. LORENZO CHERIN Says:

    Senator Hart as ever gets , pun intended, to the heart of the matter, of princile, and in practice.

    The mere, and here we get more than that, mention, o the pathetic deterioration in US-UK special relationship, as with the similar downhill one between the US and the three main powers o Europe , other than my own back yard o the UK, shows the truth o the terrible wreck that is the Trump project.

    Whether soul mates based on ideology or not, from Roosevelt through Obama, Churchill to Cameron, the chuminess was at least based on shared values and friendly personalities.

    We have a state of relations instead , replacing this, with a non relationship upfront that is one backstage , between the US and Russia. This would have been fine and was , when both were from a position of moving together for a safer world, think of the more centrist latter Reagan years and the early Gorbachev era, but now makes a mockery of such.

    Putin is more authoritarian and undemocratic than Trump. Trump the more politically , maybe , personally, unhinged.

    This is a first indeed. Whatever the flaws in those we did not support, Reagan, Bush jnr, even, yes, Nixon, there was somewhere , sometimes, very definitely a person you might want to sit down and have a conversation with that could advance a real agenda that would see progress. I read Elton John on his rapport with younger Bush on hiv aids efforts in Africa, and see a decent man pushed to the right by cronies of yesterday in his cabinet, pulled a little leftward by common decency and a pop star, albeit one of great activism.

    Trump has got to be defeated while in office by the appearance of a definite opposition leader.

  3. LORENZO CHERIN Says:

    p.s

    F or f button on computer playing games, sorry for the o ‘s that are really of’s !!!

  4. Jack DuVall Says:

    Unlike our televised media which remain preoccupied by sex, domestic political pratfalls, and the effects if not the cause of climate change, Senator Hart has the courage to state the obvious. The media’s superficial effort to probe the coincidence of Russian interests and the pattern of Trump’s actions and inaction is further evidence of the decline in investigative journalism in the U.S., due in part to the reduction in staff at our major metropolitan newspapers.

    We still have a few outlets such as Mother Jones and perceptive writers like Frank Foer and Andrew Sullivan, but the American political media are not the robust, courageous institution they were forty years ago. If they were, what Robert Mueller is now uncovering might have come more quickly to the public’s attention before the election in 2016, and Republican lawmakers would be reluctant — as most were during the Watergate scandal — to question a duly appointed special counsel’s efforts, thereby putting partisan interests above the nation’s security.

  5. gary hart Says:

    Message for Eric Jacobson: It has been called to my attention that you have submitted two comments that have not been published. None of us can find these comments. Please resubmit and they will be published. No exclusionary editing going on here. GH

  6. Eric Jacobson Says:

    Senator:

    Thank you for the kind line and invitation.

    A technical “gremlin” is still preventing me from posting the comment. No idea why. (It was just one comment I attempted to post from different computers.) As a work-around I refer anyone interested to the following link to my Facebook page for op-ed and legal commentary, which has the same text I tried to post here on MOP: https://www.facebook.com/ECJLA/posts/1497574450280166 .

    Better luck to myself next time!

    Eric

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