The Washington-Moscow conflict of interests has a long history and there will be numerous contentions that yet could damage Mr. Trump’s hopes in the Baltic Showdown
Following quite a while of expectation, Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin to meet on Monday. To put under the serious scrutiny of the US president’s aspiration to bond with the Kremlin boss.
In the event that Trump’s impulse is correct and he discovers shared view with Putin, at that point, then the pair´s Helsinki Summit may take the heat out of some of the world´s most dangerous conflicts.
With the enemies at loggerheads over Syria, Ukraine, pipeline strategy, secret activities and meddling in polls, even Trump advised: “I´m not going with high expectations.”
The reckless billionaire has been president for the year and a half, while the 65-year-old previous KGB officer has been leading running Russia for last 18 years.
The 72-year-old president by the by has a high supposition of his capacity to charm extreme rivals, for example, North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, whom he met at a summit a month ago.
“I think it´s a good thing to meet. I do believe in meetings,” Trump emphasized in an interview with CBS that broadcast before he arrived in Helsinki.
In a similar meeting, Trump conceded that Russia remains an enemy, however, he put Moscow on a standard with China and the European Union as economic and diplomatic opponents.
The Kremlin has also played down hopes that the odd couple will emerge from their first formal one-on-one summit having resolved the issues poisoning relations.
Putin, who played host at the World Cup final in Moscow on Sunday and was due to arrive in Helsinki later Monday, has remained terse in the run-up to the summit.
Many fear that Trump — in his eagerness to prove that he was right to seek the summit with Putin despite Russia´s often hostile stance — may give up too much ground.
In the run-up to talks, Trump has refused to personally commit to the US refusal to recognize Russia´s annexation of Crimea, leaving open the possibility of a climb-down.
If Washington were to de facto accept Russia´s 2014 land-grab, this would break with decades of US policy send tremors through NATO´s exposed eastern flank.
Trump´s critics in Washington will be watching this — and also how he handles the growing evidence that Russian agents intervened in America´s 2016 presidential race.
Last week US special prosecutor Robert Mueller indicted 12 more Russian intelligence officers for allegedly hacking Trump rival Hillary Clinton´s computer server.
There will be outrage at home if Trump does not confront Putin over the scandal, but the mercurial US leader would not say whether he would demand the suspects´ extradition.
Trump certainly does not expect to win over the Washington media and foreign policy establishment.
In a bitter tweet sent as he flew between his golf resort in Scotland to the Finnish capital, he said even if he was handed the keys to Moscow “it would not be good enough.”
Helsinki may not be impressed either.
On the eve of the summit, more than 2,000 people denounced Trump and Putin and hailed human rights, press freedom, and dissent as they marched in the city´s Senate Square.