The unofficial but actual leader of the Republican Party in the U.S. is scheduled to meet one-on-one behind closed doors with his puppet stooge in Helsinki on Monday: the leader of the GOP being Vladimir Putin and his minion being his well-trained dog Donald Trump.
Let there be no doubt about it, this is what the real world looks like today, not the illusion of anything different.
Be reminded of what the bigger picture on a global scale looks like. It is not that different from the era of the Cold War between the U.S. and (now) Russia, because Putin has reconstituted his realm in that way.
On the one side of this picture is the Western Alliance, that which grew out of the horrors of two great world wars (considered by many historians really one war with a “long weekend” in its middle).
It is veritably unthinkable the carnage of both institutions of civilization and human beings that took place, especially when viewed from the standpoint of the imperfect optimism that led into to the cataclysm.
The Western Alliance was established led by American political and economic generosity to prevent this madness from going further. It was buoyed by the Marshall Plan in Europe and the reconstruction of Japan in Asia, and stood for a common security, economic cooperation and the ideal of democratic institutions rooted in the United Nations’ Declaration of the Rights of Man.
On the other side, remnants of the totalitarian tyrannies that rose up between the wars, with roots dating back through eons of brutal empires, remained entrenched, led by the Soviet Union and a shaky Sino-Soviet Axis.
This side, too, was defined by military security and economic advantage but never on a serious notion of democratic institutions, and with an aggressive resolve to vanquish the other side.
These two competing worlds and world views have altered little since the falling of the Berlin Wall in 1989, except for the effectiveness of Russian intrusion in the West, in particular the U.S., beginning with the early 1970s Nixon-Brezhnev “detente” and continuing through the deceptions of the Soviet-Russian era of so-called “perestroika” in the 1980s. What naive Westerners thought was a liberalization of Soviet-Russian policies was, in fact, being played by Moscow in a clever judo-like fashion to advance its strategic objectives.
An important aspect of this shift occurred in the West in the form of a deliberate switch by Moscow from promoting a leftist approach to political intervention to advanting a radical right-wing approach. This began to happen in the early 1970s, done under “detente” by deceiving right-wing currents in the U.S., like Nixon and J. Edgar Hoover, that it would help to put down the anti-Vietnam War and pro-civil rights ferment of that era.
The infusion into the U.S. of thousands of Russian emigres during “detente” was a move to supplant the older organized crime elements here with a new crime wave that became known as the “Russian mafia” that helped spearhead the rise of the alt-right and build its brand through old tricks of blackmail and deceit.
One of its earliest captures was Donald Trump.
In the era of “sex, drugs and rock and roll” of the 1970s, he was a very easy target and with the help of one or more “sparrows” (see the book/film “Red Sparrow”) has been owned lock, stock and barrel for over 40 years.
So now we see Trump as president of the U.S. (with the invaluable contribution of Russian electoral dirty tricks) stumbling into Europe to weaken the Western Alliance, politically, militarily and economically.
How did this happen? Many have simply been asleep at the wheel. Others have been recruited as complicit accomplices by way of blackmail and corruption, including many leaders of the so-called Republican Party.
But cooperating Republicans better watch out. While they giggle over their temporary gains in the U.S. – tax reform for the rich and a shift in the makeup of the Supreme Court that will disenfranchise minorities, strip social safety nets and obliterate regulations – the deeper shift in the global balance of power will soon be to their very unpleasant detriment.
Nicholas Benton may be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.