Josef Braml: "Trump to convince Congress that US need Russia"
It's been a year since Donald Trump was elected US president last November. It is not an exaggeration to say that the election of a billionaire Republican, who was not perceived as a serious candidate in US and world politics until the last day, has become a political earthquake on a global scale. Even a year after Trump was elected president, many in the world find it difficult to deal with the thought that he is the new master of the White House.
Donald Trump is undoubtedly unpredictable politician capable of setting up a storm on stock exchanges or provoking an interstate crisis by one rash tweet. What should we be ready for in the following years of Trump's presidency? The expert of the German Association of Foreign Policy (DGAP), Josef Braml, speaking with Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, commented on the results of Trump's presidency.
"The third world war has not yet started so far. But Trump has achieved a lot in domestic politics, which has not yet been noticed here. Many of those who represent Trump as a fool, and measure his actions by the scale of morality, overlook that he has quite definite strategic goals. He implements them, and they change America and the whole world," Braml notes. According to the expert, Donald Trump announced his candidacy for president in order to limit the influence of the state on economy and people's lives as much as possible. "That is why his supporters chose him as president of the United States. That is why he was supported by economic players. And because of this Trump can be even re-elected for a second term," the analyst warns.
"Now Trump is supported by the Wall Street, the oil and gas and military industries. These are three powerful interest groups which, being sympathetic to Trump's position on limiting the state's influence on the economy, are willing to donate a lot of money for his re-election. Trump understands that next time it will be much more difficult to win the election. And it's not just because he will not have enough supporters due to demographic changes in the country, but also because the candidacy of Hillary Clinton helped Trump," the expert noted. Concerning the issue of whether Trump will be re-elected or, on the contrary, impeached, Braml said: "We should expect that he will be re-elected for a second term. But if some information comes to light from secret services or within the framework of the investigation, Trump's presidency may end sooner. "
Josef Braml commented on the Russian-US relations, for improvement of which after Trump's election as president many held out hopes, which have not come true: "I believe that his attitude towards Russia has not changed. But this has posed difficulties for him. Even before his election as president, it seemed that the US wanted to get closer to Russia in order to limit China's influence. Trump was able to come to an agreement with Russia from the very beginning. But now he has an internal political problem and some following issues have arisen: "Did Trump or his staff get along with Russia so well that they had helped him win the election? Did Trump know?" This discussion can lead to a process of impeachment, and therefore he faced a great internal political threat. In order to bring the situation back to normal, Trump took a more conciliatory stance towards Russia's critics and special services. The Congress also tied his hands in the issue of anti-Russian sanctions, supporting them with a strong majority. So it's not so much that Trump has changed his attitude towards Russia. Rather, congressmen and senators have lost their patience. But in the long run, it is likely that Trump will be able to convince the Congress that the United States needs Russia to hold an even greater threat from China."
Speaking of some unreasonable with regard to the US interest Donald Trump's actions in the foreign policy arena, the DGAP expert focused on the following decision: "I was very surprised that Trump ripped off the Trans-Pacific partnership, which his predecessor Barack Obama negotiated. In principle, it was a deal that Trump could like - other states made concessions to the US on trade and monetary policy in order to enlist the military protection of the US. I expected that Trump, who flaunting his ability to make deals, will bring this agreement to the end. Having broken the deal, he gave China the opportunity to fill the vacuum left by the US. It was not the best solution from the trading and geostrategic point of view. I assume that Trump will regret it. Now he is trying to come to terms with these states on a bilateral basis, he believes that he will be able to achieve more by doing this. But Trump underestimates China, which took advantage of the situation with filigree precision and now expanding its zone of influence - at the expense of the United States," Josef Braml concluded.