If it’s Sanders versus Trump, Vladimir Putin will be a Bernie KGB bro – Washington Examiner
If Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, Russian President Vladimir Putin will go all in for him and against President Trump. Trump can expect cyberattacks, information warfare, and covert/semi-covert Russian efforts to support Sanders’ organization.
A Sanders presidency could be drawn from a KGB fairytale. The KGB was the organ to which the west could source back the fake news arrayed against it, but there’s nothing fake about Sanders. Where other 2020 candidates prevaricate, Sanders answers happily and honestly. He tells you what he thinks. And boy, does Putin like what Sanders thinks. Let’s consider the three main elements why.
On defense, Sanders wants to gut military spending and thus NATO’s deterrence posture and means of action against Russia. Sanders has also expressed skepticism about NATO, and frequently suggests that he could negotiate lower tensions with Putin. The Russian leader would take Sanders for a KGB waltz were he ever given the chance. With time, the former KGB lieutenant colonel might even invade the Baltic states.
On foreign policy more broadly, Sanders is skeptical of American leadership, derisive of Israel, disgusted by the Sunni-Arab kingdoms (which, for all their flaws, are crucial to U.S. interests and regional stability), and sympathetic to revolutionary Iran. All of these positions serve Putin, who wants to play regional actors off against each other at the expense of U.S. security interests. Sanders would help him do so.
On energy, Sanders wants a federal ban on fracking. Yes, you read that right, Sanders opposes that which affords America energy independence and a key means of undercutting Putin’s energy blackmail strategy. Rather than unleashing the U.S. energy export market to undercut Russian energy monopolies in Europe (which Putin uses to extract concessions), Sanders supports Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s bankrupt Green New Deal. A Sanders presidency would allow Russia to consolidate its influence over Europe, further depleting democratic rights and economic growth.
Don’t get me wrong, unlike the British Labour Party’s Jeremy Corbyn, I am confident that Sanders isn’t actually a Russian agent. But Sanders’ views fit wonderfully with Putin’s strategic interests.