Journalist bravely confronts Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin

Cheryl Sanders
July 17, 2018

Mr Trump's team says "a productive dialogue" with Russian Federation is "good for the world".

President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin arrive for a meeting in Helsinki, July 16, 2018. The discord and division sown by Trump's remarks (which diehards in the right-wing media are already blaming on the liberal media) are just the sort of thing Putin likes to see.

It was a remarkable break with U.S. intelligence officials and the Justice Department and, just as alarming for some, Mr Trump also put the two countries on the same footing when casting blame for their strained relations.

Trump also appeared to embrace Putin's offer to have Russian investigators work together with U.S. prosecutors on the case of the 12 just indicted.

U.S. Sen. Jim Risch's comments joined a flood of reactions to Monday's two-hour, one-on-one meeting between Putin and President Donald Trump in Helsinki, Finland.

And so, yes, I think we have elevated this Russian Federation thing to a degree that we are simply deranged by it. Lemire asked Trump whether he agreed with the nation's intelligence community, which has concluded Russian Federation interfered in the 2016 elections, or Putin, who has repeatedly denied it. Lemire also asked whether Trump would denounce election meddling and warn Putin not to do it again, and asked Putin whether Russian Federation had gathered incriminating material on the American president.

Yet most Russians aren't saying Putin vanquished Trump.

"It's amusing to recall the nonsense from Obama et al about Russia being a weak "regional power", Alexey Pushkov, a member of the upper house of the Russian parliament, referring to former U.S. President Barack Obama.

"As I said today and many times before, "I have GREAT confidence in MY intelligence people".

But while neither president seemed to appreciate Lemire, commentators on social media erupted with praise and admiration for the reporter, calling him "incredibly brave", a "hero" and "fearless". Kimmel asked. "We haven't seen an American so owned by a Russian since 'Rocky IV'".

"Missed opportunity by President Trump to firmly hold Russian Federation accountable for 2016 meddling and deliver a strong warning regarding future elections", Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said on Twitter.

Instead, he denounced the "stupidity" of his own country's policies, especially the decision to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Its front page featured an illustration of Trump holding hands with a bare-chested Putin and shooting Uncle Sam in the head with a gun in the other hand.

The facts: Trump is a almost solitary figure in his administration in holding on to doubts about whether Russians tried to sway the election.

Trump's openness to the symbolic offer appeared to cede the high ground to Putin.

Asked about the timing of the indictments, Putin said he was "not interested in this issue" and described the Mueller probe as belonging to "the internal political games of the United States".

Putin suggested U.S. investigators might travel to Russia to participate in questioning Russians accused by Washington of USA election meddling as long as Russian investigators were allowed to do the same with United States spies operating in Russia, an idea Trump's critics dismissed as ludicrous.

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