One of the accomplishments of Trump’s abrupt move to conduct foreign policy by assassination is to make Vladimir Putin look like one of the adults in the room.
Putin has just invited Germany’s Angela Merkel to Moscow to explore how to prevent the crisis from deepening—and perhaps salvage something of the Iran nuclear deal, of which both Germany and Russia were major partners and guarantors.
Putin has his own radical Islamists to contend with. Though he has had his own tactical alliance with Iran, this latest mess is a blowup the Russian leader doesn’t need.
To a large extent, Putin helped Trump get elected, and Trump has substantially been Putin’s stooge—a useful idiot, as the Stalinists used to say. But from Putin’s perspective, Trump may just have outlived his usefulness.
In 2016, Trump famously (or infamously) and publicly urged Putin to show the world Hillary Clinton’s hacked emails. Well, turnabout is fair play.
I have no idea what Putin has on Trump, but he clearly has something. This would not be a bad time to surface it.