Foreign Press Review (22.05-28.05)

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Amid intensification of talks about «collusion» between Trump’s campaign and the Kremlin Russia’s shadow accompanied Trump also during his entire foreign trip. Ahead of American president’s meeting with NATO and EU leaders journalists discussed concern Europe has over the US Russia policy as, according to them, there is no clear Trump’s stance on Russia. However, the media pointed at the fact that EU and NATO officials seem less anxious over Thump than after his inauguration as they got assurances that there would no radical changes in the US policy. For example, Trump publicly claimed that he did not see NATO as “obsolete” as he had previously said during the campaign.

However, despite moderate optimism in the run-up to the NATO summit, the reaction to its results was controversial. Some experts and journalists were fast to claim a defeat of Putin’s plan to break the transatlantic alliance since the American president invoked Russia among threats NATO faces while Moscow, according to the journalists, has the most negative image in Europe since the end of the Cold War. Meanwhile, others noted other details and finally characterized the meeting as yet another Putin’s win. They drew the readers’ attention to the fact that in contrast to the previous US presidents Trump practically refused to reaffirm Article 5 (collective defense) of the NATO charter while spending a lot of time criticizing the member-states for not fulfilling their financial obligations (2% of GDP contribution to the military budget). The journalists tried to read even small details such as body language in order to make a conclusion. For example, during the collective photo Trump pushed aside Montenegro’s to stand in front of him (it was the first NATO summit for the country since joining the alliance) and it was considered in the press as a sign of the president’s attitude to the members. It is worth noting that recently almost every negotiations in the West are considered in a dichotomy paradigm: it must inevitably be a Putin’s win or loss without any undertones possible. It is even difficult to imagine the scale of the media’s attention and hysteria ahead of and during a G20 summit in Hamburg in July where the first face-to-face meeting between Putin and Trump is to be held.

Nevertheless, the next chapter of the story will be written on May 29 as the Kremlin and the Elysée announced Vladimir Putin’s visit to France where he will be hosted in Versailles by newly elected French president Emmanuel Macron. The visit is also timed to coincide with an exhibition marking Tsar Peter the Great’s trip to France 300 years ago. The talks are mostly considered by analysts as a chance for the two leaders to get acquainted. But experts are sure that the decision to organize the meeting so fast means both parties are extremely interested in it and expect non-ideological, pragmatic negotiations.

Russia-NATO relations

Russia’s goal of damaging NATO has failed

By Aurel Braun

The Globe and Mail

25.05.17

European angst and American anger were on full display at this week’s NATO meeting of heads of state in Brussels. Though hardly a love-fest, differences belied important progress. For Russia, this was definitely not a winning outcome.

Trump Hands Putin a Win at First NATO Meeting

By Robbie Gramer

Foreign Policy

25.05.17

His refusal to explicitly endorse the principle may rattle U.S. allies who were already nervous that Washington won’t come to their defense in the event of an attack.

Russia-US relations

Trump asked intelligence chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence

By Adam Entous and Ellen Nakashima

The Washington Post

22.05.17

President Trump asked two of the nation’s top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, according to current and former officials.

With The White House In Chaos, Putin Keeps Winning

By Doug Schoen

Forbes

23.05.17

Last week was very likely the most controversial in the first four months of the Trump presidency.

There Remains No Evidence Of Trump-Russia Collusion

By Paul Roderick Gregory

Forbes

23.05.17

Diverse figures and outlets agree that the nexus of “possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign” does not include any evidence of collusion.

‘Getting Trump’ with the New McCarthyism

By Robert Parry

Consortiumnews.com

24.05.17

Many Democrats and progressives are embracing a New McCarthyism in their drive to negate last November’s election and remove President Trump from office, but is that right?

Jared Kushner now a focus in Russia investigation

By Matt Zapotosky, Sari Horwitz, Devlin Barrett and Adam Entous

The Washington Post

25.05.17

Investigators are focusing on a series of meetings held by Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and an influential White House adviser, as part of their probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and related matters, according to people familiar with the investigation.

Our No-Fault Russia Policy

By Theodore Bunzel

The American Interest

23.05.17

No, the U.S. didn’t “lose” Russia — it was in the historical cards. And acknowledging that strengthens us.

Russia-France relations

Why Is Macron Welcoming Putin to Paris?

By Wesley Fox

Newsweek

24.05.17

On May 22, the Elysée announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin would visit newly-elected French President Emmanuel Macron in Versailles next week.

French President Macron seeks fast-track dialogue with Russia in surprise meeting with Putin

By Ilya Koval, Irina Filatova

Deutsche Welle

24.05.17

The new French president will host Vladimir Putin next Monday, for a first meeting since he pledged to deal firmly with Russia. Despite rifts over Syria, Ukraine and cyber attacks, experts predict interesting talks.

Russia-EU relations

How Trump, Putin and Erdogan unsettle the EU

The Economist

25.05.17

Liberal values and the rule of law meet capricious populism.

Cybersecurity

Russia’s efforts to ‘destabilise western democracy’ increase cyber insecurity

By Michael Imeson

The Financial Times

25.05.17

Country replaces China as most feared state-sponsored attacker.

Ukrainian conflict

Donald Trump’s EU visit offers chance to resolve Ukraine conflict

By Charles Kupchan

The Financial Times

23.05.17

Careful US diplomacy can repair relations with Moscow and hasten peace in the east.

Russia-Philippines relations

One of America’s Oldest Allies in Asia Wants to Buy Russian Weapons

By Ryan Pickrell

The National Interest

22.05.17

Pursuing an independent foreign policy, Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte left for Russia Monday to seek advanced weapons, specifically precision armaments.

Russia’s internal politics

Award-Winning Russian Director Detained, Theater Raided

By Karina Orlova

The American Interest

23.05.17

In Russia, a former Cannes winner, film and theater director Kirill Serebrennikov, is being hauled off for interrogation at the Investigative Committee, after security personnel raided both his apartment and the Moscow theater he runs, the Gogol-Center.

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