However, one reason overrides all of the ones listed above: There is overwhelming evidence that Trump is essentially a Russian asset. He underscored his fealty to Vladimir Putin and Russia any number of times during his first go-round as president. Given a second chance, there is little doubt that he would reverse our policy of supporting Ukraine in its heroic attempt to ward off Russian aggression, pull the U.S. out of NATO, once again bail out of international climate change accords, and do irreparable damage to the nation’s foreign and domestic affairs.
The Soviet Union, via the KGB, identified Trump as a potential asset more than 40 years ago when he began doing business with Russian front organizations in New York City and followed that up by selling condos to Russian oligarchs and officials seeking ways to launder money they plundered from the dying Soviet state. While they did not tab him as an active asset or sleeper agent, they accurately assessed his personality deficiencies that rendered him, in their words, a “useful idiot.” Never in their wildest dreams did they anticipate that, by identifying him as an asset, they would realize the greatest intelligence coup in history when he became president.
Both while he campaigned for and subsequently served as president, Trump never said a critical or harsh word about Vladimir Putin. He was the only world leader for whom Trump consistently expressed fulsome praise. Virtually everyone else–our closest allies included–was the object of the vilest verbiage and withering criticism he could summon.
Perhaps the most shocking instance of his servility to Putin and Russia occurred at their Helsinki summit in July, 2018. Asked at the press conference following their meeting if he would finally acknowledge that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, he professed belief in Putin’s denial of Russian interference (with the intent of skewing the election in Trump’s favor) over the unanimous conclusion of the U.S. intelligence community that Russia had interfered.
That was just one of many occasions when Trump manifested being a Russian asset during his four misbegotten years in the Oval Office. The only plausible conclusion we can reach from his behavior toward Russia is that he is beholden to the former KGB station chief.
While the Kremlin broke out the champagne on election night, 2016, they were disappointed not to achieve all of their goals during Trump’s tenure in office. This failure was due in large part to Trump’s ineptitude: a useful idiot is nevertheless an idiot. As we speak, Russia is preparing to reprise its 2016 electoral success, and make sure that this time around, it will do whatever is necessary to make sure Trump accomplishes the objectives it has for him.
It is foolhardy for our justice system to ignore the danger. If he is indicted, tried and convicted as soon as possible, Russia’s prime asset will be neutralized.
February 17, 2023