Is Trump Really Putin’s ‘Guy’?

From the DNC email hack to his comments on NATO and Crimea, why Trump might be the Russian president’s secret weapon.

In this week’s episode of The E.R., FP’s David Rothkopf, Rosa Brooks, Molly O’Toole, and the New York Times’s chief Washington correspondent, David Sanger, dissect the latest Donald Trump headlines, the Democratic National Committee’s email hack, and deliberate a pressing question: Are the foreign-policy elite doomed?

Though the party conventions have concluded, the aftermath of the DNC email hack, and growing speculation that Russian intelligence is behind the attack, is still rocking headlines. In addition to which, Trump’s latest comments on Crimea, NATO, and his campaign’s amendments to the Republican Party’s platform regarding Ukraine are not helping his case against the accusation that the Kremlin is backing the Trump campaign. In picking apart the possible links and their legitimacy between Putin and Trump, the panel also discusses Trump’s call for Russia to hack Hillary Clinton’s email servers and whether or not it poses a legitimate national security issue? With the upcoming classified intelligence briefings for both presidential hopefuls looming over the horizon, should we trust Trump with our national security secrets?

The panel also discusses the fact that almost no foreign-policy or national security elite support Trump. The Trump campaign’s foreign policy is seemingly out in left field, leaving the Republican foreign-policy platform awash. Then how, the panel asks, did Trump get selected as the GOP presidential nominee? Do his supporters simply not care? Or is there a stronger narrative behind this — are the foreign-policy elite losing their credibility?

David Sanger is the chief Washington correspondent for the New York Times and author of Confront and Conceal: Obama’s Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Power. Follow him on Twitter at: @SangerNYT.

Rosa Brooks is a senior fellow at the New America Foundation and teaches international law, national security, and constitutional law at Georgetown University. Her new book, How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything, is out on August 9, 2016. Follow her on Twitter at: @brooks_rosa.

Molly O’Toole is a senior reporter at FP covering the 2016 election and national security. Follow her on Twitter at: @mollymotoole.

David Rothkopf is the CEO and editor of the FP Group. Follow him on Twitter at: @djrothkopf.

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