The American people have been very curious as to what was said behind closed doors during Monday’s meeting between President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in light of President Trump’s four-day Russian apology tour through a flurry of tweets and press conferences.
Efforts by Democrats to ask the translator of the meeting what happened have been stymied by House Republicans, so we’ve been forced to rely on the official narrative coming from the White House – and, surprisingly, from an increasingly vocal Kremlin.
Bloomberg is reporting that Vladimir Putin told his diplomats this week that he issued a proposal to Trump about holding a referendum in eastern Ukraine to decide whether or not the separatist republics of Donetsk and Luhansk – collectively known as the Donbass region – should remain part of Ukraine.
Vladimir Putin told Russian diplomats that he made a proposal to Donald Trump at their summit this week to hold a referendum to help resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine, but agreed not to disclose the plan publicly so the U.S. president could consider it, according to two people who attended Putin’s closed-door speech on Thursday.
Russian-backed rebels in the breakaway regions have been waging war against the central Ukranian government since 2014 with the help of Russian Army troops. The Russian Federation officially denies any involvement in the Donbass War, which has killed over 10,000 Ukrainians and displaced nearly a million and a half more in four years of fighting, but Russian soldiers and equipment have been captured on multiple occasions.
Bloomberg reports that the two had agreed to keep the plan under wraps so Trump could “consider” the proposal, which will probably involve Trump not paying attention as his neocon ghoul advisors clutch their pearls so hard they asphyxiate before ignoring them and doing whatever Russia wants him to anyway.
A referendum in Donbass will almost certainly be rigged in favor of breaking away and will represent a significant expansion of the Russian sphere of influence in Eastern Europe, but the inevitable weeping and moaning and gnashing of teeth from national security lanyards in Washington will stem primarily from the thought of the lost weapons contracts with Ukraine’s insanely corrupt government rather than any real concern for the people of Ukraine.
Though a peaceable resolution to the conflict is the best possible outcome, watching Putin use his hold on Trump to legitimize his territorial and strategic ambitions is deeply disturbing and represents an existential threat to NATO and the western democracies of Eastern Europe that cannot be taken lightly.
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