If you’re not immediately familiar with Dmitry Medvedev, he’s the Russian politician who has spent the past several years trading the Russian president and Russian Prime Minister roles back and forth with Vladimir Putin so that they can both stay in power. Medvedev is, by all accounts, a puppet and mouthpiece of Putin. So when he spoke up publicly today in order to humiliate Donald Trump, it was essentially a message from Putin himself.
After the U.S. Congress forced Donald Trump to sign a bill today that takes away his own ability to ever ease U.S. sanctions on Russia, leaving Trump at his weakest and most vulnerable position to date, Dmitry Medvedev saw it as an opportunity to make him even more vulnerable. Here’s what Dmitry Medvedev posted on his verified Twitter account in response:
“The Trump administration has shown its total weakness by handing over executive power to Congress in the most humiliating way. The US establishment fully outwitted Trump. The President is not happy about the sanctions, yet he could not but sign the bill.” (link). And so there you have it: the second highest official in the Russian government, beneath only Putin himself, is publicly humiliating Donald Trump for his “weakness.” This goes beyond mere posturing.
If the Russian government were merely looking to create the appearance of being angry over the sanctions bill, it could have merely attacked Congress for having passed it in bipartisan and nearly unanimous fashion. But instead it opted to directly belittle Donald Trump for being weak. This reads less like posturing, and more like a shot across Trump’s bow. It seems to be Putin’s way of telling Trump that he’s on thin ice. And it raises the question of when or if Putin might begin leaking the dirt he has on Trump in order to motivate, or punish, or finish Trump off entirely.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report