Vladimir Putin is sitting in the Kremlin with a self-satisfied smile on his face right now.
His investment in ensuring the election of Donald Trump through cyber-warfare, collusion, and subterfuge has paid off beyond his wildest dreams with his puerile puppet enacting every policy goal he was tasked with implementing — including the complete destruction of internal American unity and, even more importantly, the undermining of the NATO alliance that has kept Europe safe from the Soviet Union and its successor state’s expansionist ambitions over the decades since the Second World War.
While European leaders may have patiently waited to see just how much Trump’s heated anti-globalist rhetoric played out in terms of actual policy decisions when he first took office — and he still had a few actual career diplomats reassuring our allies that their alliance with America remained strong — their reaction to Trump surrogate Vice President Mike Pence’s speech at the annual Munich Security Conference marked a turning point in our allies’ relationship with America, a relationship that may never return to the level of trust that existed before Trump took office and aided the Russian agenda on their own borders.
The New York Times highlighted the depth to which U.S. relations with the nations that were once our closest allies have deteriorated with this one quote from a senior German diplomatic official who requested anonymity before speaking his mind.
“No one any longer believes that Trump cares about the views or interests of the allies. It’s broken,” he said with a shrug of his shoulders.
Such a situation could only have happened in Putin’s most unrealistic fantasies prior to the election of the useful idiot that he helped ushed into office.
Now, intelligence and diplomatic officers are warning of the danger of worsening European-American relations being exploited by our most aggressive competitors on the global stage: China and Russia.
The glee that this foreign policy development has caused among Kremlin leaders is palpable. According to The New York Times:
“Even the normally gloomy Russian foreign minister, Sergey V. Lavrov, happily noted the strains, remarking that the Euro-Atlantic relationship had become increasingly ‘tense.'”
“’We see new cracks forming, and old cracks deepening,’ Mr. Lavrov said.”
European diplomats have abandoned hope that President Trump will abandon what they had once hoped was mere campaign bluster and now see as the president’s deep-seated view of our allies as leech-like economic rivals trying to exploit America’s power and resources for their own benefit. Trump’s disdain for global cooperation and shared solutions to the planet’s problems hits at the very essence of European values
It’s not just European political leaders who have responded to Trump’s contempt for them with a negative reaction. The European public has an equally negative view of the American president, according to Karl Kaiser, an experienced analyst of German-American relations.
“Two years of Mr. Trump, and a majority of French and Germans now trust Russia and China more than the United States,” Kaiser said.
Let that sink in. Two years was all it took.
“Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff, a former adviser to the German president and director of the Berlin office of the German Marshall Fund, said, ‘If an alliance becomes unilateral and transactional, then it’s no longer an alliance.’” The Times writes.
“It’s very odd to talk of American leadership of the alliance when it’s Trump who has caused the crisis,” said Marietje Schaake, a Dutch member of the European Parliament. “The Trump administration is seen by many Europeans as chiefly responsible for the tensions and the weakening of the West.”
With the generation that suffered through the last major European land war now mostly gone, the dangers of losing the multilateral cooperation that kept the continent a bastion of relative peace over the last 70 plus years are not as readily apparent to a new generation of leaders.
“In the post-Trump era, there is no return to the pre-Trump era,” said Norbert Röttgen, the chairman of the German Parliament’s foreign relations committee. “The status quo was Europe’s security is guaranteed by the United States. That won’t happen again.”
While no European leader has yet to directly accuse President Trump of being squarely in Putin’s pocket, the danger of Russian and Chinese exploitation of the sudden power vacuum brought about by America’s weakened commitment to NATO is very much in the forefront of the minds of those who were once our closest allies.
“Trump does not understand the price he pays in strategic terms when he bashes his allies so publicly and openly,” said Jan Techau, director of the Europe Program at the German Marshall Fund in Berlin.
“If there is any ambiguity, he said, Russia and China know that the security guarantee is no longer real. ‘When that protection goes,’ he said, ‘then this strategic space is up for grabs.'”
That, my friends. is a recipe for major conflict. Saddled with a president who has the strategic instincts of a toddler, America may stumble into an era of devastating war and destruction that could lead to a nuclear holocaust — a reality the fear of which has slowly faded from public consciousness during the years of peace and stability.
Trump is just the big dumb bull in the china shop who could cause such massive destruction through the brute force of his staggering ignorance and misguided policies.
Let’s hope the alliance with Europe can be salvaged once we are finally rid of him.
Follow Vinnie Longobardo on Twitter.