As the presidential election in the United States draws closer, Putin’s Russia is paying close attention. Pro-Kremlin talking heads on Russian state television are discussing events in America with an air of both profound interest and deep understanding, treating electoral turmoil abroad as a real-life game of The Sims. In Moscow, President Trump’s potential re-election is still considered the sole beneficial outcome, and the expectations are high.
Having experienced a windfall of geopolitical freebies from the Trump administration, analysts and military experts on Russian state television anticipate that if he is re-elected, Trump will finally pay out like a slot machine. They foresee the removal of sanctions; the restoration of shuttered Russian consulates in the U.S.; and even the recognition of Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
“[Trump] won’t be tied down by Russiagate in his second term, he will no longer be shackled,” said political scientist Vladimir Kornilov, appearing on Russian state TV show 60 Minutes. “So we’re electing Trump again,” surmised the host of the program, Evgeny Popov.
Originally published: 2020-08-24 08:56:06