Addressing US-Russia ties in comments to the press today, President Trump defended his own record, saying that nobody is tougher than he is on Russia. He did, however, emphasize the importance of good relations between the two nations.
So far, the Trump Administration has seen anything but better relations with Russia. While Trump says he thinks he could have a very good relationship with Russia and with President Putin, but so far he seems to tread very carefully on ties with Russia.
That’s because even the most basic diplomatic contact with Russia raises accusations of inappropriately close ties to Russia. This has resulted in ever-worsening bilateral ties, and very few direct talks aimed at ameliorating the problems.
Trump’s sudden turn-around diplomatically with North Korea does underscore how quickly things could turn around for the better. The big question is if there is a willingness to make an actual effort at diplomatic rapprochement within the administration, knowing the political fallout that would follow.