By turning on his own intelligence services and siding with Vladimir Putin, the U.S. president put personal prestige ahead of the American people, says U of A historian.
This week’s Donald Trump-Vladimir Putin summit in Helsinki brought together the world’s most powerful leaders in military terms. On his Twitter account, the American president attributed previous cool relations to “many years of US foolishness and stupidity.” Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs responded with a concise “We agree.”
To many Western observers, Trump’s premise was misguided, if not downright foolish. He appears to have rejected the conclusions of three U.S. intelligence services that Russia interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential election to discredit Hillary Clinton in a series of emails, and to help ensure that Trump was elected.
Trump also opted not to discuss the indictment last week of 12 Russian military intelligence agents by U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller. So why did he meet the Russian president?