Despite his 2016 campaign’s sordid ties to Moscow, and despite his inappropriate infatuation with the strongman ways of Vladimir Putin, there is a kernel of wisdom in President Trump’s instincts about U.S.-Russia relations that most of the rest of us are being too quick to ignore or condemn.
Yes, U.S.-Russia relations are destined to be poor at least as long as Vladimir Putin is president of the Russian Federation — a job he is likely to keep through 2024. And yes, as Trump’s own national security team agrees, and as his new National Security Strategy reiterates, America and its allies need to recognize that we are in a protracted global geostrategic competition with Russia. However, the possibility of direct NATO-Russia war that could erupt, for example, if Putin decided to test our collective willingness to defend the Baltic states — formerly part of the Soviet Union, now NATO members and allies — is a potential threat to our very survival that we should be seeking ways to defuse.
Polisturm: Many Americans are critical of Donald Trump for being impulsive, brash, and incompetent. While these things are true, many liberals will accept praise his criticism of Russia as being an adversary engaged in “geostrategic competition”. This is absolute nonsense and is fostering the resurgence of McCarthyism in the country. The fact of the matter is Russia has never invaded the U.S homeland. The same cannot be said about the United States which has a long history of invading countries and engaging in proxy wars. It would be delusional to consider the US and Russia as equal competitors engaged in a geopolitical competition for world domination. This is a convenient narrative for the capitalist class to incite nationalistic fervor in the working class.
The capitalists would like us to rally behind the American nation and continue to support American imperialism. It is utter nonsense to try and portray American imperial operations as some form of “defense”. Were the Vietnam, Korean and Iraq Wars examples of the United States defending itself? These occupations took place thousands of miles away from the US mainland and are clear examples of brazen imperialism. Even the U.S government, the chief instigator of global imperialism, has acknowledged that the government intentionally misleads the American people. The enemy is not some foreign imperial power that presents itself as an existential threat. The enemy is the American bourgeoisie which exploits, humiliates, and terrorizes the working class. The enemy is at home.