martes, 11 de abril de 2017

Trump’s White House takes combative posture toward Putin

The war of words is the latest sign that Trump's hope for improved U.S.-Russia relations is dimming.

By Nahal Toosi and Matthew Nussbaum

The White House on Tuesday demanded that Russia stop disputing the reality of Assad’s use of the poison gas.

So much for all that love from Russia.

Days after President Donald Trump ordered a missile strike on the Russian-backed Syrian regime, lingering hopes that the U.S. relationship with Russia would improve fizzled as both sides engaged in verbal warfare.

The White House accused Russia of trying to cover up Syrian President Bashar Assad’s use of chemical weapons, bungling a Hitler analogy along the way. Russian President Vladimir Putin taunted America by bringing up the futile U.S. hunt for Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. The heated rhetoric on Tuesday came just as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson landed in Moscow for meetings with Russian officials, timing that seemed intentional on both sides.

Trump, who has said on numerous occasions that he thinks highly of the Russian president, noticeably stayed out of the linguistic skirmish. But the fact that he hasn’t tried to shut it down suggests he’s increasingly swayed by the Russia hawks in his orbit, as opposed to others who’ve encouraged him to accommodate Moscow.

“Trump had a kind of affinity for Putin based on partially seeing in him the kind of leader that he aspired to be and because of some of the things people in his circle were telling him,” said Jeffrey Mankoff, a Russia specialist with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “Now that he’s actually confronted by some of the problems and hearing from people outside the campaign circle as well, he’s not as eager to embrace Putin as he seemed before.”

One of those real-world problems is Syria, where the U.S. believes Assad recently used chemical weapons to kill dozens. Last week, Trump ordered a missile strike on a Syrian airfield to retaliate over the chemical attack, angering Assad’s Russian patrons.

No hay comentarios.:

Publicar un comentario