Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Why Trump Failed - Vox Popoli

 Donald Trump’s failure to cross the Rubicon is explained by his reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Former President Donald Trump admitted he believed Russian President Vladimir Putin was only trying to ‘negotiate’ when he sent troops to the Ukraine border and was ‘surprised’ when the Kremlin leader actually invaded the country.

‘I’m surprised — I’m surprised. I thought he was negotiating when he sent his troops to the border. I thought he was negotiating,’ Trump told the Washington Examiner during a Tuesday evening phone interview from his Mar-a-Lago estate. ‘I thought it was a tough way to negotiate but a smart way to negotiate.’

Trump, who seemingly developed a close working relationship with Moscow during his presidency, said Putin has ‘very much changed’ since the pair last worked together.

‘I figured he was going to make a good deal like everybody else does with the United States and the other people they tend to deal with — you know, like every trade deal. We’ve never made a good trade deal until I came along,’ Trump said. ‘And then he went in — and I think he’s changed. I think he’s changed. It’s a very sad thing for the world. He’s very much changed.’

I’ve mentioned this observation before, but Trump’s character has never been demonstrated more clearly than by this comment about Vladimir Putin. Trump’s strength is that he is a legitimately great negotiator. However, as with all successful men, his weaknesses are related to his strengths. Trump is a talker, not a doer. He is a negotiator, not a warrior. He conflates speech with action. He’s not a fighter, and never having been punched in the face or thrown down another man in the judo ring, he doesn’t understand men who are.

Of course he thought Putin was negotiating by mobilizing the Russian Army, threatening an invasion, and issuing an ultimatum, because he thinks everything is a negotiation. Hence his failure to take action after the fraudulent election of 2020; there probably wasn’t any chance of him actually doing so even if the US military could have been relied upon to obey its Commander-in-Chief – something we can’t know either way despite what various people claim – because for him even an approach to the Rubicon would have been a negotiating point rather than the beginning of a military action.

Remember, the Senate was massively surprised when Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon and marched on Rome, because despite his military successes on the Mediterranean and in Gaul, they knew him to be a skilled politician and negotiator. And negotiators always prefer jaw-jaw to war-war.

So Trump is a negotiator and Putin is a fighter. What, one wonders, is Xi Xinping?