Donald Trump’s Mysterious Relationship With Vladimir Putin Reportedly Continues To Stump Experts

U.S. President Donald Trump (L) and Russian President Vladimir Putin shake hands during a joint press conference after their summit on July 16, 2018 in Helsinki, Finland.
Chris McGrath / Getty Images

Although Donald Trump’s affinity for Vladimir Putin has been criticized for the duration of his presidency, The Guardian reports that experts still haven’t quite figured it out. According to Daniel Fried, assistant secretary of state for Europe from 2005 to 2009, Trump’s approach to foreign policy ⁠— in which he appears to favor autocrats over the European Union ⁠— follows a tradition that hasn’t been seen in the presidency since before World War II.

“The last time this kind of thinking was powerful in the United States, it was in the content of the isolationist movement … the belief that our getting involved in European security was not in America’s interests,” he said. “It’s a cynical view that power is the only measure for success, and I happen to think it’s a dangerous view because it undervalues the free world.”

Julianne Smith, a former deputy national security adviser to former vice-president Joe Biden, claims that Trump’s deference to Putin is one of Washington’s “greatest mysteries.”

“No one knows for sure whether it’s just Trump’s admiration for Putin’s authoritarian rule or it’s the fact that Trump owes Putin something.”

Experts claim that Trump’s foreign policy is pushing countries to get closer to countries like China in case their relationship with the U.S. continues to dwindle.

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Per The Inquisitr, MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell recently made the bombshell claim that the president obtained loans from the Deutsche Bank that were co-signed by Russian billionaires close to Putin. The report was swiftly retracted by O’Donnell and he admitted that the story, which had just one source, didn’t meet the network’s standards. As for Trump, he highlighted it as another report that falsely suggested that he had close ties to Russia.

Although Robert Mueller’s investigation didn’t find sufficient evidence to establish a criminal conspiracy between Trump’s administration and Russia, there were numerous instances of coordination that suggested a broader conspiracy that was nevertheless not enough to bring a criminal charge. Per The Inquisitr, Volume I of the report reveals the connection between the Trump campaign and Russian intelligence agent Konstantin Kilimnik, who was given private campaign polling data. In addition, Trump pursued a business deal in Moscow that could have banked him hundreds of millions of dollars.

Although Trump continues to deny his relationship with Putin is anything more than a friendly political relationship, his refusal to speak bad of him or Russia’s aggression continues to baffle experts. According to Smith, the Trump-Putin dynamic is “eroding US leadership” as well as the “transatlantic alliance.”