The Reason Trump Is In Love With Putin: Here’s What I Think

I mentioned yesterday that in trying to unravel Trump’s love affair with Putin we can eliminate compromat. No matter what Russia possessed to attempt to compromise Trump it would have no bearing on his presidency. He has the Republican Party solidly in his corner and while they control Congress he is as safe as a bed bug in a NY City moderately priced hotel.

I’ve written about Trump’s reluctance to criticize Putin. While he has criticized many other leaders that has stood out. But there is another leader who he has also not criticized that seems to fly under the radar. That is Bibi Netanyahu the prime minister of Israel. You may think that is just the pot not calling the kettle black because they are both under criminal investigation but it is more than that. If in Trump’s mind Putin walks on water then Netanyahu glides over it.

You must understand what a relief it was to Netanyahu that Trump was elected. Netanyahu expressed his feelings about America in 2001 when he told a group of settlers: “I know what America is. America is a thing that can be easily moved, moved in the right direction. They will not bother us. Let’s suppose that they will say something… so they say it? Eighty per cent of the Americans support us… We have such support there!”

Think back to the Netanyahu/Obama falling out and what a shock it was to Netanyahu that he could not get what he wanted. What was the major cause of it? Do you remember. Yes, that’s right it was the Iranian deal whereby we and other nations lifted sanction on Iran in exchange for them giving up nuclear ambitions for fifteen years.

Netanyahu has been urging us to attack Iran since the beginning of time. He even threatened that Israel would do it on its own if we did not act. When Obama preferred a peaceful solution over the Netanyahu war plan we saw the unseemly spectacle of Netanyahu campaigning for Mitt Romney and later the Republican Congress giving him the honor of addressing it in his anti-Obama endeavors.

Not only does Trump not criticize Putin or Netanyahu, neither does Netanyahu criticize Putin. What makes Putin so untouchable? Netanyahu and Putin do not seem to share a common interest. Certainly in the war in Syria they appear to be on opposite sides. Yet they have met seven times, five times in Russia, over the last two years. According to this article they have a close relationship which has benefited Israel to the detriment of the United States.

At a meeting in August 2017 Netanyahu said he told Putin: “Iran is not hiding its intention to create a land bridge from Iran to the Mediterranean, and transfer Iranian forces – air, sea and ground – to Syria to supplement the Shi’ite militia already there.” Then at a follow-up meeting after which Russia sent a team of senior Russian security officials to Israel in late January 2018 Netanyahu told Putin again of his position on Iran in Syria but added he told Putin of Israel’s “objections and also those I heard from US President [Donald] Trump [of the Iranian nuclear deal]. I can’t speak for the Russian position, but they understood that if certain changes weren’t made, it is very possible that the US would make good on its threat” to withdraw from the deal.”

It would be nice to know what Putin said in return, if anything, but we do know there has been increasing cooperation between Netanyahu and Putin. Along with this is the desire on Trump’s behalf to please Netanyahu by moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem and cutting off all aid to the Palestinians.

The greatly under reported statement by Trump to Netanyahu that he plans to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal along with the positioning of Bolton and Pompeo, two strong advocates for withdrawal, in the power structure of the Administration tell us there is no doubt that will happen in May. How then does that play into the courtship of Putin?

As I see it both Trump and Netanyahu recognize Russia is in close cooperation with Iran. Their reluctance to criticize Putin is their attempt to put a wedge into the Russian/Iranian relationship. To this time, since the Iran/Iraq/Syrian axis with their allies in Turkey is beneficial to Russia, they have been unable to do this. They will continue to try to break Russia away from Iran.

If unsuccessful, they hope to persuade Putin not to interfere in the attack on Iran which will be carried out mainly by American air power and cruise missiles. The question will come down to what Putin will extract from them for standing off.  Israel angered American officials when it refused to criticize Russia’s invasion of Ukraine but it pleased Putin.  Will the US and Israel give Russia a free pass in Ukraine? The Baltics?

Difficult to tell but keeping Putin happy seems to be the goal of Trump so that he can please Netanyahu by bringing war to Iran.





  1. John King McDonald

    Bibi was snubbed by Barak Obama and his Administration . Snubbed ? Nay, not simply snubbed but humiliated . Why so remarkable then that Israel should exercise the realpolitik of recognizing that the Middle East , as much as Nature , abhors a vacuum . We stepped out of more than half a century of exerting regional influence with Israel as proxy fortress state . Russia stepped in . Nothing remarkable about that . It is a dangerously volatile world . Israel , Trump’s heart is true ! To wish to be with Jesus Christ in Jerusalem is an eschatology that has exerted its pull on the Western Psyche for two thousand years . There are historical currents , teleological for the Jews in Israel , that are much deeper than the latest politics in the region . Hold into your hats , or yarmulkes , as the case may be .


  2. Netanyahu has threatened to attack Iran, but let’s not forget the hate-filled rhetoric rising from Tehran is hardly helpful. The Iranians have recently threatened to wipe out Tel Aviv and kill Bibi (among other things). I used to dismiss these propaganda outbursts as purely hallucinatory, but I’ve come to believe the Israelis take these threats seriously. Words do matter. If I didn’t have a nuclear arsenal, I’d be very careful around Israel. I might even tickle Bibi, just to jolly him up. But this kind of logic doesn’t seem to hold in the Mideast. Thus, a nation with no nuclear weapons (Iran) is threatening to destroy and/or drive into the sea the folks who have plenty of nukes and the means to deliver them with modern missiles, bombers and submarines. Go figure.

    Anyway, in this nuclear world, Iran is very much dependent on Putin, who is rolling in A-bombs. Without Putin’s support, things could go very badly for Tehran. If Trump tears up the Iran deal, as expected, Tehran will be more dependent than ever on Russia.

    Please don’t misunderstand me. I’m totally opposed to a war with Iran, North Korea or Switzerland, for that matter. No nuclear disasters, that’s my motto. I hope Trump keeps the Iran pact in place, and I support the president’s decision to hang out with his new best friend, Kim Jung-un. I don’t anything will change, but lowering the temperature a bit is better than nothing. Maybe Kim will give the president a ride in his ridiculous armored train. I can see Trump emerging from the tricked-out train with a smile on his face and a demand to the Pentagon and Amtrak for bulletproof choo-choo of his own.

  3. Matt, you deserve a gold medal for marksmanship in this post.

  4. Has Trump criticized Xi of China or the leaders of Japan and ROK? Maybe he needs those leaders to achieve a deal on North Korea. So it may be a smart move to have Russia, China et al supporting the denuclearization of Korea. Russia could probably thwart all sanctions against the Kim regime if desired. They may be essential to a settlement there. 2. You could be right on the Middle East. If Russia supports Iran in a war started by the U S and Israel victory may not be achievable. Seems unlikely the RUS give up their friendship with the Persians. They would also be abandoning Assad in Syria and alienating all the 100 million plus Shia in that region. A most unlikely scenario. They view themselves as more than just a regional power. So vacating that area seems improbable. 3. Iran is not going to be bombed without huge retaliation. America has thousands of troops in Syria, Iraq, Qatar, Bahrain and Afghanistan that would be exposed to revenge attacks. Iran would sink some oil tankers to close the Persian gulf. The economy would be a mess and the public would demand an end to the conflict. The last thing America wants is another war in the Middle East. It would be a no win conflict. Plus it would be a disaster for Trump’s politically. Look what happened to Bush 1 and Bush 2 after their wars.

  5. Bibi was not shocked in the least by what Obama did. He was expecting it and it probably fell well short of what Israel was prepared for.

    “Netanyahu has been urging us to attack Iran since the beginning of time. He even threatened that Israel would do it on its own if we did not act.”

    I don’t think this is accurate.

  6. You nailed it Matt! Well done. Fiur additional insights.. first.. no one goes to war because Trump says so.. another 911 like event is needed. Secondly.. what’s it worth to know in advance when the war starts and crude prices soar.. trillion dollar insider info. Thirdly refresh yourself on the Franklin AIPAC espionage case. Mueller buried it. If he hadn’t the Iraq war would not have occurred. Fourthly .. Mueller also buried the 911 Commission report Saudi annex. If he had released it in a timely manner the Iraq war would also never have occurred. Mueller is not what he appears to be. Cheers