Donald Trump likes Vladimir Putin, and the sentiment is returned. Trump says Putin is “a real leader,” and Putin says Trump is “brilliant.” There are two central reasons for this mutual admiration of Trump to Putin and vice-versa. First, they are both nationalistic alpha males. That makes them oddities as compared against other political figures in Europe and the European Diaspora. Second, they have similar would views in terms of International Relations (i.e., how states relate to other states). They both see International Relations as a game of power, not ideology. That also makes them oddities because most political figures in Europe and the European Diaspora are neoconservatives or liberal internationalists. For neoconservatives and liberal internationalists, democracies do not make war against democracies, so International Relations is a game of ideology. For that reason, there is an ongoing effort to bring liberal democracy to every barbaric region of the world.
Putin has intervened in Syria on the behalf of Bashar al Assad. That action is contrariwise to the intentions of neoconservatives and liberal internationalists who want Assad removed from his role as the proverbial Caesar of Syria. Removing Assad, however, would have the same effect as removing Saddam Hussein. A vacuum of power would be created, whence chaos emerges; and from chaos, more dangerous people will fill that vacuum of power. Such dangerous people, in the Syrian case, seem to be the subhuman barbarians who make up the Islamic State (ISIS). To prevent that, Putin wants to preserve stability by supporting Assad. No matter the suggestions of the liberal international media, Putin’s support for Assad is based in Putin’s desire for stability, not his like or dislike for Assad’s regime. In fact, Putin says that he is will to work with anyone and any state insofar that their interests align. That is pure Neorealism.
Also, Putin desires to enlarge Russia’s geopolitical power. The case in point is the Russian annexing of Crimea. Some of the motivation for this aggression is simply Russian chauvinism, which says that Ukraine is not a legitimate state. Instead, Ukraine once was part of Russia, so ipso facto Russia has a moral right to Ukraine. This is the view of Eurasianism, which wants an expansion of the Russian Federation over what they consider “Greater Russia.” And yet, the action of annexing Crimea was also done to balance American power in the region. Eastern Europe is Russia’s historical sphere of influence, but NATO has expanded into Romania, Hungary, and the Baltic states. NATO is an American military alliance, so that expansion is an intrusion into Russia’s historical sphere of influence. Showing resistance to that intrusion, Putin annexes Crimea. Thus, the annexing of Crimea is an attempt to correct the imbalance of powers that is a result of intolerant hegemony of the United States, which demands unipolarity and refuses to recognize other hegemons, such as Russia.
Trump’s Challenge to the New World Order
I doubt that Trump is a very well read person. I doubt indeed that Trump has any familiarity with International Relations theory or immigration literature. It is likely that Trump makes his ideas on his perceptions at the moment. In other words, Trump bases his opinions on his instincts, but he comes to good conclusions on both those topics.
Unlike the neoconservatives and liberal internationalists, a Trump foreign policy would be realistic (i.e., Neorealist). Trump argues that the Iraq War was a bad thing because it destabilized the Middle East. Indubitably, that is true, but it is also irrelevant to the foreign policy elites in the United States because they are neoconservatives and liberal internationalists. They do not think in terms of power and what consequences altering the balance of powers will have. They want to spread democracy, liberalism, and human rights to the rest of the world; none of these things are actually applicable to the barbaric part of the Middle East to which they want to spread them. This is the New World Order, in which we live, that is created by neoconservatives and liberal internationalists to force modernist conceptions of the state on everyone. The New World Order intends to destroy all difference between and within people-groups. For that reason, the United States refuses to recognize the legitimacy of states that are not liberal, such as Assad’s Syria.
Whereas contemporaneous United States foreign policy is based upon ideology, a Trump foreign policy would be based upon reality. Trump would not refuse to work with illiberal actors, but he would instead work with any actor for common purposes. Trump says that he is happy to see Russia “taking care” of ISIS, and likewise he would not mind recognizing the legitimate government of Syria (i.e., Assad). Putin and Trump are roughly on the same page insofar as International Relations go because Putin and Trump are both willing to work with any actor if their interests align with that actor.
The New World Order is being challenged by the Neorealism of Trump and Putin internationally, but Trump also challenges the New World Order internally. Trump says things that are not allowed by Political Correctness, which is a polite term for Cultural Marxism. Trump sees America not as a universal nation—an oxymoron in and of itself—but as a nation-state that has an identity. That identity is rooted in the Old America that is Anglo-Saxon and Protestant. The New World Order has tried to destroy that identity through imposing a false national mythos of multiculturalism, diversity, and immigration. Trump repudiates that through his rambunctious statements against immigration. The New World Order hates Trump because he is everything that they want to destroy—a powerful, masculine, blonde man who they can’t silence—and they empower him because they can’t silence him. Trump legitimizes the concerns of millions of white Americans by voicing their concerns. Accordingly, Trump keeps saying what he says, so he moves the Overton Window toward him. Trump is the living Archetype of Bruce Wayne who is able to move the Overton Window away from liberal cultural hegemony. In so doing, even in his boorish and buffoonish way, Trump moves the Overton Window toward identity and tradition.
Trump and Putin
Respectively, Trump and Putin represent a rebellion against the New World Order. Trump and Putin see the world through the prism of Neorealism. They share a worldview that sees power, not ideology, as the sufficient cause of war and peace. Neither Trump nor Putin wants to start foreign wars if it is not in their national interest to do so. It is not in the national interest of the United States to have hostile relations with Russia, but the New World War has an ideological interest in that. Also, the United States has an intolerant hegemony that demands unipolarity. These things—the New World Order’s ideology and the United States’ intolerant hegemony—have lead to a hostile relationship between the United States and Russia. That hostile relationship may be called a neo-Cold War. Trump embraces neither that intolerant hegemony nor the liberalizing efforts of the New World Order, so it is highly probable that the neo-Cold War would end under a Trump foreign policy.
Thus, in spite of the leftist hyperbole, the “crazy” Trump is the sanest candidate running for President. A Trump presidency would not continue intolerance of other hegemonic states but embrace multipolarity. A President Trump would make the world a safer place.