Foreign Policy and the Helsinki Meeting

John Reid
Tuesday, July 17th

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Answers Stansky has been with us on the program a number of times you know he's a senior fellow with the foreign policy research institute and former intelligence officer and Bush Administration advisor. And and I'm glad to have you here this morning. I have expressed dismay that Donald Trump even put himself in a situation where he knew these questions would be asked dubbed him. And he probably wouldn't be able to be strong enough to. Offer. An answer that would appease those who are out to get him in the first place. And it kind of unfolded in the worst case scenario in my opinion yesterday would you agree with me or would you argue with me about that. I think you're spot on John. Hey if you lose. Deeply disheartening. Yeah and who just wants the president's got to realize it's not about him. These are. Issues. Of national interest. That transcend administrations. And he beat wild himself yesterday the only thing worse. Than just performance. It was the reaction of a number of his critics shape get the John Brennan little world and start talking treason you and other nonsense. But this was bad yesterday let's let's not sugar coat it. And to be clear why was it bad. Well that's bad because. It cannot it trump would have pointed at Barack Obama appropriately. Concerted. He carried out taking sides against the United States again trying to curry favor. With an adversary is not an enemy of our country. Play in effect saying what you know we'd we'd done bad things to. And then there's this notion that these. She's trying to come along because of the superior deal making skills. All of history and these are enduring national. Interest. Which each side has and which are at variance with one another all that's gonna disappear. Because he's come in and in the span of hours. He's changed the course of events. These said the EUS relations. With Russia had never been worse. Well I'm old enough. Two to remember. Being shunted into an in the air raid shelter when I was a kid. Because. Of the spirit of the Cuban national politics. And in our community people were genuinely concerned and getting ready for. So I need at that and then even more importantly. Coke can I think. Eads also the miscalculation. I think that it would push people did it with Obama you're crawl rule called bush looked into his eyes and saw the shoulder reformer. Obama said the Medvedev. Told Vladimir after Mario and next election I'll have more flexibility. More used to all of that I think. To play a week and internationally. To gain concessions. And to put himself in the position to be. Successful at our cost. I think it was just I think this is the thing that's going to require a lot of cleanup. And I just I don't understand why they had the session. I don't understand the pressure. Because they're you know the media would get up. And again not it's not just the big decline on themselves and they wind up asking. Damaging questions. Do your own credibility damages our national security. Things like and so mr. Putin. You have to really damaging information on trump and one want should disclose or are you kidding me. How did this happen and how do you as president put yourself in the situation. We know the press is gonna ask questions like. We're talking dancers and ski senior fellow with the foreign policy research institute sit take. The consternation. About all of this the the press conference yesterday off the table. Did Donald Trump get anything out of the meeting with Vladimir Putin is there any need silver lining here. I think the only thing that they ended intended to do going again. This is. To begin the process of discussion. In a more fulsome way. To try to build some confidence moving forward because. They're all our. Issues on which. The US and Russia. Similar. Interest in this position and so I think it's in the interests are similar but never identical. So you'd like to get. That low hanging fruit put it to productive use. Black I think given what happened yesterday. That's going to be much more difficult to accomplish. I think 31 going in isn't there were modest expectations. As to what it would do what little except for these stage for further discussion. Now you've got to do some clean up. Because for propaganda purposes protein. I mean certainly lack proper guest for the actually makes said it was this spectacular meeting. And the press conference afterwards. Putin looked very strong self assured. Trumps the one who kept on talking about his own difficulties. And the which content or bad. So who. Lucky if it was a misfire that much is Kennedy and Khrushchev in Vienna. Where and and coming out of that remember. Khrushchev decided Kennedy was weak in the tested him. What the Cuban missile crisis which we wish bury bad for both sides. Along those lines of would you expected Vladimir Putin would continue. Attempts to. Influence or infiltrate future elections after this performance yesterday. Oh sure and he'll do within the way. I believe fingerprints. Maybe because it's it's not that he's he won't should be pushed the course of the election. He will ruin americans' expectations. Of fairness and re use. Stress over vulnerability. So he plays mind games that's that's what it is for him. And look at it is if it's. Go back to your question about a silver lining. The good news is that madness Pompeo. Ball tends. Dan Coats. These are serious minded professionals. Who work clear eyed about prudent. Do not play the moral equivalency where they think both sides are fault right and did indeed the policy. Trump has been much firmer against Russia. Much more clear our aid and focused. And he was yesterday in person. So. Let's get passed yesterday. Look at the actions of the administration. Which are decidedly different than what the president had to say yes you're right but he needs to fix this narrative moving forward. Because if he continues to be doubled and tripled down which is already started this morning over time. And this won't prove damaging to him politically. Seems like really. On an unforced error yesterday in my assessment and I I really senior fellow with the foreign policy research institute always appreciate you joining us on the show thing for me yes sir.