Donald Trump chats with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin at the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, Danang, Vietnam, November 11, 2017 (Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/AFP)
Russian journalist Andrei Ostalski and I joined BBC Scotland’s Isabel Fraser on Saturday to discuss the empowerment of President Vladimir Putin, with the passage of a new Constitution and with Donald Trump’s embrace of the strongman leader.
Ostalski begins with a description of how the Constitution enables Putin to consolidate his rule until 2036, despite economic problems and the possibility of protests.
I follow with a discussion of the new Constitution bolstering Putin’s aggressive foreign policy, with Trump’s priority for the Russian President over US interests and agencies — including recent inaction over Moscow’s bounties for the killing of American and coalition troops in Afghanistan.
Why does Trump accept Putin’s actions? He admires Vladimir Putin as a strong, authoritarian leader. He wants to be that type of leader in the US.