What The Other G-7 Members Said . . . Never
I don’t know about how your weekend went, but if you had time to follow Trump’s bizarre attendance at the G 7 meeting in Charlevoix, Canada, you probably feel like me. WTF was that all about? Trump came off as a deranged quack and totally unhinged. There is so much to look into that it really boggles the mind.
First, he declares that Russia should have been invited to the summit. Noting that the group used to be the G 8 before the they kicked Russia out over their illegal invasion Ukraine an annexing the Crimea, this one caught everyone, supporters and detractors alike, off guard. Apropos of nothing, the Orange One pulled this faux pas out of thin air. Looking presidential (in his mind), he seemed to take on the role of “fixer”, or worse, morally superior in his demand that Russia be reunited with the other seven nations. Why would Trump think it was reasonable to give the criminal Putin a get out of jail free card? The man has no common sense or decency.
First of all, any move to readmit Russia would be predicated on Russia’s capitulation and withdrawal from the Crimea. Trump’s response? Blame Obama,
Trump, when pressed on whether he would require Russia to give up Crimea as a condition, indicated he wouldn’t, noting, “They spent a lot of money on rebuilding it.”
“Crimea was let go during the Obama administration.… He allowed Russia to take Crimea. I may have had a much different attitude,” Trump said. “With that being said, it’s been done a long time.” LATimes
Trump appears to know nothing about international negotiations or the consequences that a dictator faces when they strike out against their neighbors. Invading and taking your neighbor’s toys (or land) is a lesson most of us learn in pre-school or kindergarten. Putin, and Trump by extension, must have skipped class that day to stay out on the playground to pull the wings off of flies to watch them suffer and die.
In an editorial in the Washington Post, Max Boot reveals why Russia isn’t an acceptable candidate for readmission to the group:
Trump may well have been looking for a friendly face at such frosty gatherings when he suggested that the G-7 should add Russia. This was a bizarre suggestion, given that Russia is not only an international outlaw but also an economic pygmy whose GDP does not even rank in the top 10. If the G-7 were to expand, it should include India and Brazil, both democracies that have larger economies than Russia’s. Russia was rightly kicked out of the G-8 because of its invasion of Ukraine — an act of aggression for which Trump perversely blames President Barack Obama — and it has done nothing since 2014 to deserve re-admittance. Instead, its meddling in U.S. elections its (sic) and war crimes in Syria demand more punishment. WAPO
While the rekindling of the Putin/Trump bromance was an unexpected dust up, and a weird one at that, the real drama came from the Orange One himself and his refusal to not act like a condescending asshole to some of America’s most trusted trade partners. The mechanics of who has the better trade deal I will leave to the economists and experts on trade relations (although America has a small surplus despite Trump’s lies). On topics like this one, I am fairly certain how my readers will react. Trump opens mouth, acts badly, offends everyone in the room and leaves the scene taking cowardly shots at his opponents after he is long gone.
Partially overshadowed by Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong Un, but only partially, given that Trump gave up a lot and got nothing in return, the sense that the G-7 leaders are ready to let bygones be bygones isn’t really what’s going on. They are pissed and seem to be going to stay that way for some time. While Trump, typically, is stating that all is well while continuing to heave petulant sissy bombs at Mr. Trudeau, the foreign press has its hackles up.
. . . in Germany, where Der Spiegel reports that “President Donald Trump is intent on treating America’s allies worse than its enemies.” They also have a recommended action, namely that Europe should actively work to “isolate Trump on the international stage.”
The Toronto Globe and Mail emphasized that the remarks from Trump, and even more over the top statements from Trump’s advisors Larry Kudlow and Peter Navarro had served to unite Canada. In response, political opponents of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged their support and Canadian officials hardened their line on Trump’s proposed changes to NAFTA.
But leave it to the normally dour English to put a ring on it,
A horrified European political establishment sees Trump, like Vladimir Putin, backing the populists of Europe, especially in eastern Europe, Austria and Italy. These are forces that threaten the liberal order in a way that Emmanuel Macron, Theresa May and Angela Merkel are only beginning to understand. Daily Kos
The thing I find most curious and disturbing is Trump’s appetite for all things Russian and his admiration of Putin. This is what America gets for allowing a wingnut and a charlatan to become President of the United States. Did anyone with half a brain think this situation would turn out well? Obviously, enough did to elect him. This brings up a serious question. Can Trump be reeled in to lessen the damage he can cause to America’s already tarnished reputation? Americans certainly can’t look to the Republican Party to stand up to him. Or hell, the Democrats for that matter. The motto Make America Great Again took on a whole new meaning this weekend and not in a good way.
Americans owe the world an apology, and that should give everyone pause.