"If You Want An Arms Race, We Can Do That" - Trump Challenged Putin During Phone Call

The mainstream media is convinced that all of the measures President Trump has taken to sanction Russia and push back on its expanding influence - in the Middle East and in its own back yard - have been mostly for show.

But once again, an NBC News report shows that there's more to one-sided stories like a report in the Washington Post claiming that Trump congratulated Russian President Vladimir Putin on his recent electoral victory against the explicit advice of Trump's foreign policy advisors.

As it turns out, during the same conversation, President Trump didn't hesitate to challenge Putin to an arms race, and boasted that the US would almost inevitably win.

Two officials said Trump told Putin during a phone call last week: "If you want to have an arms race we can do that, but I'll win."

Afterward the president gave no hint of tensions when he told reporters the two leaders had "a very good call" and that he plans to meet with Putin soon to discuss curtailing an arms race.

Within days the split between Trump's Russia policy and public rhetoric was again on display.

Of course, as anybody with even the most glancing familiarity with global nuclear weapons stockpiles would tell you, Trump isn't wrong.

Chart

Still, NBC News tries to play down the significance of Trump's defiance of Putin - which included a clash between Russian fighters and US-backed coalition forces in Syria that left hundreds of Russians dead.

On at least one punitive policy - the authorization of an arms shipment to Ukraine to combat separatists in the country's restive east - NBC said Tillerson "wore him down" - referring to Trump.

Rex Tillerson, Trump's outgoing secretary of state, led the effort to convince Trump to approve the new arms for Ukraine, officials said. The plan, which Russia opposed, included the sale of U.S.-made Javelin anti-tank missiles that Kiev has for years requested from Washington. President Barack Obama had repeatedly refused to approve Ukraine's request out of concern it would escalate U.S. tensions with Russia.

Tillerson scheduled a meeting with the president to discuss the plan shortly after the national security team approved it last summer, and he raised the issue with Trump in their regular meetings over the next few months, officials said.

As the policy sat on his desk awaiting his signature, the president expressed concern that it would escalate tensions with Russia and lead to a broader conflict, officials said. They said he also saw Ukraine as a problem for Europe and questioned why he should have to do something about it. And he insisted Ukraine purchase the arms from the U.S., not receive them for free, officials said, before signing off on the policy in December.

"Tillerson just wore him down," a White House official said.

It also reported that Trump encouraged the administration not to tout any actions that might offend Putin - but the US still went ahead with sanctions and the expulsion of diplomats in solidarity with the UK. Trump has also upped the US's support for the embattled government of Ukraine - doing more than the Obama administration ever did.

In reality, Trump is taking a much harder line against Russia since Putin unveiled a new nuclear weapon that he claims can surpass NATO missile defenses.

President Donald Trump's national security advisers spent months trying to convince him to sign off on a plan to supply new U.S. weapons to Ukraine to aid in the country's fight against Russian-backed separatists, according to multiple senior administration officials.

Yet when the president finally authorized the major policy shift, he told his aides not to publicly tout his decision, officials said. Doing so, Trump argued, might agitate Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to the officials.

"He doesn't want us to bring it up," one White House official said. "It is not something he wants to talk about."

Officials said the increasingly puzzling divide between Trump's policy decisions and public posture on Russia stems from his continued hope for warmer relations with Putin and stubborn refusal to be seen as appeasing the media or critics who question his silence or kind words for the Russian leader. Critics have suggested Trump's soft approach to Putin has nefarious roots that are somehow entwined with Russia's interference in the 2016 election and the federal investigation into whether the president's campaign colluded in that effort, something the president has repeatedly denied.

Behind the scenes, Trump has only recently taken a sharper tone on Putin, administration officials said, but even then the shift seems more a reaction to the Russian leader challenging the president's strength than a new belief that he's an adversary. Putin's claim earlier this month that Russia has new nuclear-capable weapons that could hit the U.S., a threat he underscored with video simulating an attack, "really got under the president's skin," one official said.

Trump isn't the only one to warn about an arms race. Several Russian diplomats have warned that the West's response to the Skripal poisoning has been too heavy handed.

So, is NBC correct to doubt President Trump's commitment to containing and countering Russia as it asserts its geopolitical might? Or is there another explanation for why Trump is doing what he's doing?

What do you think?

Comments

Scar Bro Brazen Heist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 18:52 Permalink

Is any of this to be believed? Thing is, it sounds plausible that he would say shit like this. 

I mean, this orange idiot will say anything to anyone... I mean he has balls, I'll give him that. OR MAYBE NOT. Maybe he's just stupid. If he had balls, he'd come out and say "We wont get into a war with Putin and SHOW ME SOME PROOF before you start expelling Russian diplomats".... but he doesn't say that does he. Instead he rolls over and gets his tongue up jew ass. I mean, he's really tough when it comes to standing up for Israel doesn't he? And basically, that is all the proof you need that he's a fucking spineless cunt.... and he had us all fooled.

To date, the only person in the WHOLE of the Western world who has asked for proof that Russia was responsible for the Salisbury attack, is Jeremy Corbyn. And guess what? Now he's batting off accusations of anti-semitism and every jewish organisation (and there are a FUCK LOAD of them) is jumping down his throat. I mean, it's full on crisis mode... apparently he's a Jew hating Russian spy who's out to destroy Britain. Now if that wasn't a glowing endorsement, I'm not sure what is.

Things sure are becoming clear.

In reply to by Brazen Heist

nmewn JimmyJones Thu, 03/29/2018 - 19:40 Permalink

Hell yeah, the harder they try to take him down the moar entrenched I get. 

Plus I love to hear the bleating...

"The country has never been so polarized! Why oh why won't conservatives just cave in so we can have unity!"

Well...maybe not that last sentence (lol) but that's what they really mean by the first sentence ;-)

In reply to by JimmyJones

nmewn I am Groot Thu, 03/29/2018 - 20:04 Permalink

lol...thats another thing, is anyone really sittin around thinkin the 5'5" St.Pooty is wrestling Siberian tigers? 

I mean, even look at the pic accompanying this article...in THE REAL world...the only way St.Pooty is at eye level with Trump is if he's standing on a stool...lol...so much BS Russian propaganda and I've seen all this crap before.

Supermen...LMAO!!!

In reply to by I am Groot

falconflight Scar Bro Thu, 03/29/2018 - 20:24 Permalink

Good propaganda: "Now he's batting off accusations of anti-semitism and every jewish organisation..." The way you weaved this lie in an otherwise defendable position.  Perfect.

---

Corbyn and his Labor Party, but Corbyn in particular, has openly supported Hamas/Hezbolla, and so many members of his party and shadow cabinet have for years been openly Jewhaters.  

In reply to by Scar Bro

I am Groot Brazen Heist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 18:53 Permalink

Trump is most definitely not the Magic Kneegrow accompanied by his Trannie Wookie. Magic Kneegrow drew and drew and drew little red lines all over the globe. Everyone pissed on him as he justly deserved. I don't want  to see anyone in a war. But I think Trump won't hesitate to fuck somebody's shit up if he's pushed to. Then again, the MIC is operating the Orange puppet now, so yeah, we're all fucked unless somebody has some 1,000,000 sunblock laying around.

In reply to by Brazen Heist

helloimjohnnycat nmewn Thu, 03/29/2018 - 19:46 Permalink

Doesn't matter.

Totally neutral about the guy but Putin would not be an easy fight.

First off guys his size can get right into you.

He's thick enough & muscled enough to require a strong defensive push-back or else.

With his training, 99 % of the fuckers here would be on the deck before they could counter.

That's the way it works.

Putin is skilled and would flip an old fatt-fuck like Trump in 1.5 seconds.

Trump couldn't touch me. One quick move & my first strike would close one eye. Two more from his blind side and he's a goner. Bare knucks.

A real fight against Putin ? No thanks senor, I know better. Putin has trained to a high level. Karate kids / dudes with strip mall black belts would need extra years of growth to match that man.

 

 

In reply to by nmewn

veritas semper… helloimjohnnycat Thu, 03/29/2018 - 20:33 Permalink

 Mr. Putin is a 9 dan Judo master. The Donald is a fat,out of shape ,big mouth bravado reality TV 'star' ,posing as a President. Fat ,out of shape and full of hubris like most Americans .

Those who are really brave do not need to bump their chest and loudly proclaim that they are number 1.Again like the Americans.This chest bumping only proves their weakness.

Those who are capable and courageous ,just shut up and complete tasks.Like Russia did in Syria,Crimea. And lately ,in the arms race.

And Mr. Putin compensates his short stature by his greatness ,steel will,extraordinary intelligence(just look at his last  Q&A section,lasting 4 hours ,where he answers all types of questions,mostly from unfriendly western journalists and wipes the floor with them); but more than intelligence ,he has something more important =wisdom ,the higher level of intelligence. Very,very few people have this; and no western leader has it,for sure.

Imagine the Donald answering questions from Eastern journalists and public(unscripted) ,for 41/2 hours. LOL!

QED.

In reply to by helloimjohnnycat

Miffed Microbi… veritas semper… Thu, 03/29/2018 - 21:26 Permalink

The amount of junk food Trump eats will put him in a grave soon. Those fine suits can't hide his expanding girth. However in my experience most men don't figure this out until they get their first coronary. After working graveyards for years I found the only thing that will bring a man into the ER at those hours is a heart attack or a problem with their dick. 

 

Miffed 

In reply to by veritas semper…

Miffed Microbi… Implied Violins Fri, 03/30/2018 - 01:13 Permalink

No, I can't saw I have had the pleasure. Watched a Ken Doll extracted from a colon once. Kinda freaked the ER doc a bit when he got a hold of those tiny feet. Then there was monstrous cucumber man. That was more challenging. The poor student nurse next to me looked a little green when the patient said to her " Haven't had anything stuck up your ass Honey?" She turned to me " I didn't know nursing was going to be like this." I told her it gets easier over time. Then we were called away for a major trauma. When we finally checked back with the patient, he had skipped out. Took his cucumber too. 

 

Mr is glad I went into microbiology. He was tired of having to pick up his friends off the floor after I regaled them with too many ER adventures. 

 

Miffed 

In reply to by Implied Violins

Perimetr Nature_Boy_Wooooo Thu, 03/29/2018 - 18:49 Permalink

"Of course, as anybody with even the most glancing familiarity with global nuclear weapons stockpiles would tell you, Trump isn't wrong . . . 

. . . What do you think?"

I think Tyler (or whoever wrote this crap) has his head up his ass. 

Just providing a chart listing the number of nuclear weapons possessed by each nuclear weapon state only proves that the US and Russia have 90% of all the nuclear weapons.  (And the chart is inaccurate because it doesn't include thousands of US and Russian nuclear weapons "scheduled for dismantlement".)

The number of warheads has very little to do with the technological "advancements" being pursued with nuclear weapons technology. Anyone who actually understood what Putin said on March 1 should understand that the US is now incapable of preventing a Russian nuclear attack on the US -- in other words, US Ballistic Missile Defense doesn't defend against non-ballistic, hypersonic Russian nuclear weapons.   see http://www.unz.com/article/the-implications-of-russias-new-weapons/ 

In reply to by Nature_Boy_Wooooo