I Praise Trump

I praise Donald Trump. Some people, not only Poles, accuse me of criticizing him too much. U.S. presidents have always been extremely popular in our country, often regardless of what they were doing. After President Trump’s short visit to Poland last July and his passionate speech on Krasiński Square in Warsaw, his popularity has been established for good.

In the “fake news” era, the Polish media have gossiped about the Polish president and prime minister supposedly being on the White House blacklist, and about the fact that the U.S. will not host them unless the issues with bills adopted by the Parliament are resolved in favor of the opposition. Of course, meetings with Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un or Saudi Arabia’s king happen only after these countries, famous for their “democracy,” align their policy and customs according to instructions from the United Nations or the Council of Europe.

President Andrzej Duda was even criticized for not making a better effort because President Trump will host the heads of the Baltic states when they celebrate the 100th anniversary of their independence, and Duda will not be included.

And maybe it is better that way because the presidents of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania visited Trump last Tuesday, and he used the opportunity to call a press conference and say, among other things, “Since the beginning of your independence, the U.S. has never, and you know it better than anyone else, ceased to support the sovereignty of the three Baltic republics, even though for years there have been many conflicts, many problems, many difficulties and we have never abandoned you and we never will.”

You can tell from this quote that Trump hadn’t done his homework again; he hadn’t read the briefing, and he did not know that the problem of the Baltic states comes down to having been under Soviet occupation for half a century. He then gave the floor to the president of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaite (he did not call her by her name as it is too difficult) so she could publicly reiterate the compliments she has paid him privately, and then Trump ignored his guests altogether.

He instead complained about China, threatened Mexico about sending the military to secure the border to stop illegal crossing (he had to refute this statement several hours later when he was advised that the threat was unconstitutional), accused Amazon of ruining the U.S. by not paying taxes and shipping its goods for free. (It was immediately pointed out that both of the statements were not true, and the problem was that Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos is also the owner of The Washington Post, which has been critical of Trump.)

Asked about President Vladimir Putin, whom he recently congratulated on winning another term as president and about whom he speaks warmly of as someone he would like to meet, Trump said that no one has never been as tough on Russia as he is, but that maybe the U.S. and Russia can get along. Of course, he did not mention the poisoning of Russia and Putin’s enemies, or the Russian occupation of the Crimea, or even the Baltic maneuvers of the Russian navy planned in the near future, circumstances that would have been very disturbing for his guests and are disturbing to Poland and the Scandinavian countries.

The thing I praise President Trump for is that, because of him, although it will actually work against him, the world is going to know what Russia really is. No one can now stop the investigation conducted by Robert Mueller regarding Russian influence on American elections. On April 3, the first person charged in the investigation was sentenced. Indeed, after being under arrest for only a month on charges of giving a false statement, the individual, Alex van der Zwaan, a 34-year-old Dutch lawyer is really important. (I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned out that he was born Aleksiej Iwanowicz Iwanow). Almost nobody has ever heard of him, and even though he seems like a character from a poor spy novel, he could turn out to be Ariadne’s thread in the whole chaos. His father-in-law is German Khan, a mysterious Russian oligarch and Putin’s friend. It is suspected that he and his consortium, Alfa Group, are the most crucial elements of Russian foreign policy and Russian energy policy. It was Alfa Group that possessed the server through which the calls between Russia and Trump Towers in New York were coming. In addition, van der Zwaan was associated with Paul Manafort, the famous ex-adviser to Trump and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

The story has just begun.

The author is a Polish philosopher, publicist, publisher, social and political activist, and president and co-director of the Institute for Democracy in Eastern Europe.

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