David Axelrod on Trump-Obama & Our Quick Take on Trump-Putin


In the section titled “Anti-Obama” in our last week’s article, we had written: 

  • “We had introduced the Anti-Obama concept back in July 2014:
    • “We think the 2016 campaign will be run against President Obama’s tenure just as the 2008 campaign was run against President’ Bush tenure. That is why the candidate who is most anti-Obama, who seems most capable of delivering what Obama could not, is the candidate most likely to succeed
  • … The reality is that the most important factor in a post two-term election is the brand of the sitting President.” [emphasis this week]

It felt good to hear David Axelrod concur with our stance today on CBS Face the Nation. David Axelrod is the winning strategist of the past two Presidential elections. No one knows more about Obama as a candidate than  Mr. Axelrod. So what did Mr. Axelrod say today on CBS Face the Nation?

  • He is the Anti-Obama; I always believe that the incumbent sets the terms of the debate & people never choose the replica of what they have, particularly the other party; they choose the remedy & there is no one more anti or there is no more of an anti-thesis of Barack Obama than Donald Trump.” [emphasis ours]


(Mr. Axelrod from 01:11 to 01:26)

Much of this week’s media outcry was about Putin praising Trump & Trump welcoming that praise. In fact, CBS Face the Nation featured an entire segment devoted to heaping scorn on Donald Trump by using pro-Obama journalists from Washington Post & Atlantic. These journalists have been terrible failures in providing any sensible or rational coverage about the Middle East and more specifically about ISIS-AlQaeda for the past 15 years. The only common ground the two extremes of imperialistic interventions, the NeoCons & NeoLibs, share is their joint hate of Putin. 

In our opinion, Donald Trump is approaching the Middle East as a pragmatic businessman focused on outcomes instead of agendas. He is sensibly focused on winning one battle first, the most important battle. That is exactly what winning leaders have done through out history. FDR accepted Josef Stalin as an ally because defeating Hitler’s Germany was much easier via a partnership with Stalin’s USSR. Simultaneously fighting wars with both Hitler’s Germany & Stalin’s USSR would have been utterly asinine. President Nixon made a 180-degree turn on his own past convictions and charmed Mao’s China away from USSR. 

In contrast, the Obama Administration has pushed Putin’s Russia into the arms of China of Xi Jinping. This is so stupid & so dangerous that it simply boggles the mind. But then, no one really cares about outcome-based analysis any more. It is about fanatical desires to engage in military or financial interventions either from a leftist “values” crusade or from a rightist “pride” quest. 

As a pragmatic deal-maker Donald Trump is confident of reaching a deal with Vladimir Putin, the same kind of a deal FDR made with Stalin or Nixon made with Mao & that Kissinger implemented with Deng Xiaoping. Donald Trump is intelligent enough to understand that fighting ISIS alone or with some titular coalition will be unsuccessful if done with limited resources and terribly expensive if done with unlimited resources of lives, money or time. He is intelligent enough to understand that Islamic terrorism is a common enemy of both USA & Russia and so a joint front would be beneficial to both if they could strike a deal. And deal-making is what has made Trump successful.

How many of you heard or read about the next front ISIS is working to open? How many of you read this week’s terrifying quote in the Wall Street Journal – “And with the kind of army we have, they could seize the Fergana Valley in a week.”? Fergana Valley is the hub of the Central Asian region of Uzbekistan ,Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. Since 2011, as WSJ reports, “Thousands of Central Asians have flocked to Syria and Iraq to join Islamic State and other jihadist groups“.  They now “yearn to return home” and hence the quote about the Kyrgyzstan army lasting less than a week against them. 

As we have said before, ISIS leaders are not dumb. They are not waiting around in one central place to be bombed into oblivion. They are building a second base in Libya and actively opening other theaters of war all the way to & into Central Asia. We used to describe this conflict as one connected theater of war from Jordan to Afghanistan. That was too optimistic. As we see now, this is one connected theater of war all the way from Libya to the Fergana Valley of Central Asia. 

It would impossible for America to fight in all these theaters alone. So-called allies like Turkey & NonPakistan are really adversaries in this theater. NPak has already demonstrated that with its nurturing & support of the Taleban and Turkey keeps demonstrating its preference for ISIS over enemies of ISIS. The only countries that can help in Syria remain Russia & Iran. And the only countries that have more at stake in fighting ISIS in Central Asia are Russia and Iran.

Donald Trump can get America a partnership deal with Putin and a deal with Putin is a must for a deal with Iran. Donald Trump understands that a “deal” is not an act of friendship, not a confirmation of common values but only a rational agreement to work in a limited way towards a common interest.

If the Washington Post, Atlantic, ABC News or CBS Face the Nation understood this, they would have welcomed the “detente” between Trump & Putin. Both FDR and Nixon would have. But then, those were real leaders not talkers on TV.

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1 Comment

  1. How true: “The only common ground the two extremes of imperialistic interventions, the NeoCons & NeoLibs, share is their joint hate of Putin”

    You’ve simplified the chilling possibilities quite well …

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