I'll have much more to say about the preceding post soon. Turns out that there's a hell of a lot more to that tale of craziness and con artistry.
Right now, please note this story in the WP
Officials in the Trump administration on Sunday demanded that Russia stop supporting the Syrian government or face a further deterioration in its relations with the United States.
Signaling the focus of talks that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is set to have in Moscow this week, officials said that Russia, in propping up Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, bears at least partial responsibility for Wednesday’s chemical attack on villagers in Idlib province.
How can everyone ignore the obvious?
The same publication -- the Washington Post -- published an all-important article
about Erik Prince's secret meeting in the Seychelles with a Russian representative. Yes, I've reprinted these words before -- two or three times. Here they are again.
The meeting took place around Jan. 11 — nine days before Trump’s inauguration — in the Seychelles islands in the Indian Ocean, officials said. Though the full agenda remains unclear, the UAE agreed to broker the meeting in part to explore whether Russia could be persuaded to curtail its relationship with Iran, including in Syria, a Trump administration objective that would be likely to require major concessions to Moscow on U.S. sanctions.
I'll keep reprinting those words until the full implications finally sink in.
It's clear to me that everything we are seeing right now is theater. Team Trump and Team Putin came to an agreement back in January. Putin doesn't really care about Assad. Putin cares about those sanctions, about NATO, about Ukraine, about oil. Ultimately, he hopes to reconstitute the USSR, at least in part. He wants the next century to be called "the Russian century," just as the 20th century was called "the American century."
That's his great goal. Like any decent chess player, he comprehends that one must occasionally sacrifice a lesser piece in order to gain a checkmate. He can afford to give Trump a clear victory right now, even if doing so causes Putin to experience a minor -- temporary -- humiliation.
Here's how I predict the melodrama will unfold: Russia will "capitulate" to Trump's demands and agree to depose Assad, who will be given a comfortable exile in one of Putin's many properties. Putin and Trump will agree on a replacement, who will probably be the usual strongman/puppet. This strongman/puppet will give lip service to democracy, which means that our press and our political establishment will love
him or her. The strongman/puppet will invite in American troops to wipe out what remains of ISIS.
Our press will portray Trump as the man who brought Putin to heel: Hail Trump, mighty Trump, the conqueror of ISIS, the savior of Syria, the man who bested Vladimir Putin.
That will be the message. Everyone will forget about the role Russia played in the election.
Our press will not
talk about the real cost of Trump's deal with the devil. Our press will portray the lifting of sanctions as Putin's justifiable reward for seeing the light on Syria.
And absolutely everyone -- on both the right and left, on both Fox News and MSNBC -- will continue to pretend that the WP never published that story about Erik Prince in the Seychelles.
All in all, I have to admit: Well played
. Treasonous, yes. But well played.