Donald Trump winning the November general election in the US would be a dangerous disaster for the US, Ukraine, and the West, essentially installing an instrument of the Kremlin in power in Washington, much like in the classic “The Manchurian Candidate” novel and subsequent films.

If Trump wins, he will enter the White House on Jan. 20, 2025, as a much more dangerous president than he was in 2017. He will be bitter and seek to take his revenge on the so-called deep state that he claims stole the election from him in 2020. Trump will also go after European leaders who he feels slighted him or looked down on him throughout his first term. Ukraine, which was a subject his first impeachment’s quid pro quo attempts, will suffer, as well. In fact, it already has – an aid package has been held up for more than three months thanks to a handful of Trump’s most rabid supporters in the House. They are even threatening to remove the Speaker if he dares to even put it up for a vote.

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The US, Europe, and Ukraine: this is the same list of enemies compiled by Trump’s long-time partner Vladimir Putin. These nations are also the recipients of his seething hatred. And so there they stand, gleefully winking at each other across the sea. They need no covert intermediaries or secret agreements. They know perfectly well what particular actions their tandem duo would take in the third decade of the 21st century.

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Candidate Trump promises almost every day that he will stop the war in Ukraine within 24 hours of assuming the presidency, which is code for putting an end to US arms shipments.

And in the first 12 days he will meet and even surpass Putin’s December 2021 ultimatum to NATO (which Putin himself no longer dares mention after his defeat at Hostomel in February 2022): “Pack up your sh** and hightail it back to the Baty-Dzhugashvili line.” [The line of maximum expansion of to the West, in 1245 under the Mongol commander Baty and in 1945 under Stalin– ed.]

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Starting on the morning of Jan. 25, 2025, a series of at first seemingly insignificant events will take place in several Central European nations. Then things will become more and more alarming. In Riga we will start to see aggressive marches of the dashing “veterans of the Great Fatherland War.” In Narva, little green men will begin coming out of the woodwork, desecrating symbols of the Estonian state. A pro-Russia demonstrator in Tallinn will be killed in a confrontation with police. 

Moscow will then issue stern warnings to half a dozen NATO members, accusing them of Russophobia and of allowing a resurgence of Nazism on their soil. Meanwhile, Dmitriy Medvedev, the Chairman of the Security Council, will propose that Russia immediately launch limited nuclear strikes.

All eyes will naturally turn to Washington and Brussels.  Trump will pause theatrically and offer no comment on the events. NATO headquarters, inundated with appeals from member states to invoke Article 4 and 5 of the NATO charter will be unable to stake out a position because one of the leading members of the alliance, the US, will not take part in discussions.

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On the evening of Jan. 25, Hungary, Slovakia, and Bulgaria will announce that they are withdrawing from NATO. And then on the 26th of January, US President Donald Trump will appear on television screens throughout the world to inform us that he is heading to Moscow on the invitation of his friend Vladimir. There they will cut a terrific deal to ensure peace and security in Europe for decades to come. “You’re going to love it,” he’ll tell the nations that have pressed NATO to enforce the security guarantees promised to them.

Putin will meet Trump in person at the airport and depart for the Kremlin in the same limousine, not wasting a moment in hammering out the details of this historic deal.

After a productive night hard at work with Putin, Trump will return to Washington. He will descend the stairs of Air Force One to greet his well-wishers, one hand raised triumphantly and clutching several sheets of paper.

He will reveal the contents of these documents several hours later in an address to the nation:

“My fellow Americans, I and my friend and crucial geopolitical partner Vladimir have come to the conclusion that an organization such as NATO, founded in the middle of the last century, is no longer up to the task of maintaining security and stability in Europe. Its foolish mechanical expansion has already led to one major war on the continent. The organization is inherently resistant to reform. And so, we have decided we need other entities to provide security guarantees in Europe, namely our two Great Powers – the United States and Russian Federation. Our first step will be to put an immediate end to the war in Ukraine. I have already issued an order to cease all arms shipments to the country. I will introduce a bill to Congress which officially recognizes the territorial integrity of both Russia and Ukraine with border between them as it stipulated in the constitution of the Russian Federation. For his part, Vladimir is ready to recognize any government in Ukraine which 1) returns all Russian territory it is currently occupying and 2) is prepared to sign a Friendship and Good-Neighborliness Treaty with the Russian Federation, that will guarantee the rights of Russian speakers on Ukrainian territory.

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Vladimir intends to propose similar binding treaties to the governments of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia.  If they give their consent, he will limit himself to a minimal number of territorial demands, that is to say those that are absolutely essential in ensuring Russia’s security:  returning the Narva area to Russia and turning over the Suwałki Gap to the Union State of Russia and Belarus, thus connecting it with the Russian territory of Kaliningrad…”

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Such is a real scenario under which the West might lose a world war foisted upon it by the forces of absolute evil, despite its vastly superior military capabilities. The only thing that prevented the Ukrainian armed forces from achieving victory back in the fall of 2022 was a lack of political will on the part of the Americans.

After a protracted delay, the Ukrainians have finally received by now what I would call a rather limited array of Western weaponry. But if they had had these weapons at their disposal during the attacks on Kherson and Kharkiv, Russian forces would have been soundly defeated.

There are two ways now to avoid the catastrophic scenario I have outlined above. The first and more radical path is to achieve total victory over Putin’s Russia well before Jan. 20, 2025.

For this to work, the West must immediately deliver to Ukraine (among other things) two hundred F-16s and the same number of ATACMS with a range of 200 miles. That way there will be no need for trench warfare or front-line breaches. Ukraine will simply annihilate the adversary’s Crimea armed group distantly, which will inflict not only a huge military defeat, but a psychological and political catastrophe on the Putin regime.

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The second method does not run counter to the first; on the contrary, it serves as its logical complement.  It entails providing the American society with the opportunity to choose the most desired (sought-after) Presidential candidate. Of the three remaining candidates in the race, this person, in my opinion, is most certainly Nikki Haley. Most polling data currently shows both Trump and Haley defeating Biden in a general election, but Haley wins by a larger margin.

Still not convinced? Then let’s conduct a little experiment, one that our narrow-minded American pollsters have yet to bother with. Let’s poll the widest selection of the American public and ask them one simple question: “Who would get your vote for President of the United States – Nikki Haley or Donald Trump?”

My working hypothesis goes like this: Nikki Haley would consistently come out on top of any such poll and is, therefore, the most popular and most just choice for President among the American electorate.

Then how is it that she might lose the Republican primary to Trump? For one simple reason—primary voters are not reflective of the United States or even of the Republican party as a whole. They represent the most partisan activists within the Republican party. The most qualified and desired nationally candidate is often unable to make it through an internal party filtration system – a major flaw of the traditional American electoral system. But in this particular case, let’s try to rectify that injustice.

The very act of conducting the experiment I proposed will bring many Americans to their senses and may have a positive impact on Nikki Haley’s chances to win the Republican nomination. 

I hope also that a Reagan wing of the Republican party, McConnell, Graham, McCall, Roger, Turner (maybe after reading this piece)’ will wake up at last to their historic mission: prevent the Manchurian candidate clinching the 2024 Republican nomination.

The views expressed are the author’s and not necessarily those of Kyiv Post.

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