Putin, Trump, Sanctions – Love Hath no Disguise

This play is a love story about two star crossed world leaders. Every other force in the cosmos, even sanctions against their union, though love always finds a way. Against all odds, the rulers maintain their relationship. This is the story of all of the valleys and mountains separating Trump and Putin.

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Part I

The stage is a bull fighting arena. Putin plays the bull and Trump is the dashing bull-fighter. Putin’s performance should earn him an Oscar. Putin is in the corner of the arena stamping it’s hooves into the dirt, steam pouring out of it’s nostrils, preparing to catapult into the bull fighter. Except, the bull controls it’s seemingly uncontrollable temper. Instead the bull softly saunters to the bull fighter, and allows him to affectionately scrub it’s ears.

Remember when Trump bombed Syria? These were the only missiles Trump launched during his presidency. Remember how much his supporters respected his bold moves? It was such a win-win-win situation for Trump.

The bombing was a result of Syrian government using sarin nerve gas on their own people. Russia and Syria are great allies. Just a few days ago, Russia says the United States and its Western allies rushed to judgment in blaming the Syrian government.

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Russia was furious! In fact, the Kremlin released a message just after the Syrian bombing that relations between the U.S. and Russia were “in their worst period since the end of the Cold War.”

That is really bad.

But a few weeks later, Russian diplomats were wined and dined in the White House. Trump and Putin met and had secret conversations.  Just like that, such a precarious and insecure relationship between two world powers is fixed. Or maybe they had always been BFFs, ever since Russian criminals began turning their dirty money into Trump Tower apartments.

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A closer scrutiny into the Syrian bombing would reveal some interesting details. For starters, we bombed an abandoned airfield. There were no damages. They actually were using the same air strip we bombed a few days later. We also notified Russia about our plans to bomb Syria before the missiles were launched.

Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis said in an official statement:

“Russian forces were notified in advance of the strike using the established deconfliction line. U.S. military planners took precautions to minimize risk to Russian or Syrian personnel located at the airfield.” CNBC article

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Doesn’t notifying your target of the bomb sort of defeat the purpose of the bomb?

A few years ago Putin’s world was turned upside down. Yes, even the richest man in the world has shit to worry about.

It all stemmed from the drop in oil prices. Oil is Russian’s biggest commodity. When oil prices crashed, Russia’s economy fell also. Putin didn’t help himself by attacking different European countries. The whole world slapped Russia with a lot of sanctions. Suddenly Putin was in trouble. His only solution was to install pro-Putin leaders into governments around the world. Sounds like a crazy plan right? But he did just that.

The curtain raises – Trump walks onto the stage.

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Nothing is proven yet. Trump-Russia collusion is still just blowing in the wind. Despite every single federal investigation concluding that Russia was involved in our elections, most Trumpkins still remain resolute that Trump earned the presidency on his own coke-snorting, sexually molesting, and college tuition scamming merits. Any Trumpkin will look you right in the eye and say, ‘Of course, Putin didn’t get Trump elected if Russia and the US are on such rocky grounds.’ That might explain the reasons for such a lavish performance.

Part Two

The stage opens with Trump being handed a bill that increases sanctions against Russia.

Trump starts to sweat and loosens his tie. He is in quite a pickle. Putin got him elected to get rid of these stupid sanctions, not to increase them! Trump really has no choice. He could’ve vetoed the bill, but that would not have changed a thing.

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“I think it’d be very unwise — it would be overridden immediately,” Oklahoma Republican Rep. Tom Cole said. “The President has every right to veto it, but it isn’t going to change the votes.” CNN article

But those sanctions are really just more smoke and mirrors. Remember this is a republican controlled government. Republicans didn’t force a president from their own party to sign a bill that could ultimately get him impeached. Instead, Republicans made a president from their own party defy all collision theorists. What more could Trump do, than increase Russian sanctions, to prove he isn’t secretly colluding with the Russians?  In reality though, after all the smoke clears, Trump will be the final say on how hard and how fast these sanctions will be implemented. It’s like when congress authorized Obama to send weapons to Ukraine, but he never did. President has the final word.

What better way to silence those collision conspiracies than Trump actually authorizing more sanctions on Russia?

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Moreover, for sanctions to work, they have to be enforced. Investigations must take place. Penalties must be assessed. But, there is nothing in the legislation that requires an active enforcement posture or even forces such a posture on an executive determined to slow-roll implementation. It is possible that the dogged efforts of certain political appointees and civil servants could lead to some implementation, even with a dismissive White House. But, little in Trump’s approach to Russia thus far suggests he will order its aggressive implementation. Fortune article

Of course, our president has the power to mitigate the effects of the sanctions on Russia. It is a two-way street. Russia will respond to our sanctions with some of their own. Businesses on both sides will be hurt. There will be US businesses imploring Trump to weaken the sanctions. Only time will tell, how these sanctions will be enforced. Just keep an eye on them.