So, have we been wrong about the Big Guy after all? Despite all this smoke about connections between his campaign and the Russians and all his sweet-talking bromance with Vladimir Putin, does this nasty missile strike against Putin’s other puppet, Al-Assad of Syria, mean Trump is actually his own man?

If you were a Russian spy handler and you had a highly placed asset in the American government–I’m not naming names, now–who was overplaying his part ineffective in doing your bidding and on the verge of blowing his cover, what would you do? If the way he was messing up was by being too friendly, the best way to give him his credibility back is to let him pick a fight with you. It can’t be much of a fight. You don’t want to get hurt in any way and you don’t want it to get out of control. Just a quick dustup.

So what if you get your Syrian puppet to commit an atrocity, which is the kind of thing he does all the time anyway, and make sure there are plenty of cameras around getting really graphic images. Stuff that’s hard to watch and usually gets covered up.

Now, you know your asset watches TV, is volatile and loves to divert attention from his many failures. Here’s a chance for him to flex some muscle. Say launch 59 cruise missiles at an air base. But you talk first. Cruise missiles can cause real destruction, and you don’t want that. Turns out, they don’t have to. Maybe some planes get blown up. Maybe they’re decommissioned planes. All your people are safely out of the way because your asset who is always bragging how he wants to keep the enemy guessing tells you and the Syrians what he’s going to do. And he doesn’t even crater the runway. Planes can be taking off and landing in the morning.

Your asset looks strong strong at home and you condemn it in the press so he looks independent. Then put the incident behind you. Blame the Syrians.

And your asset in America gets a white wash.

Pretty soon you’ll do something praiseworthy–like promise to keep nerve gas out of Syria. (That’s easy. It’s what you promised Obama.) Now it’s time for some make up sex.Then the oil man comes to Moscow and rewards you for cooperation by revoking sanctions. Whew! You can’t believe it took this long.

Sounds convoluted? Remember Putin was a spy. This is how he works.

Author: leonardrysdyk

Leonard Rysdyk is the author of more than a dozen novels, stories, articles and poems. His work has appeared in many publications including Snow White, Blood Red, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Aboriginal Magazine and the New York Review of Science Fiction. A professor at Nassau Community College, he teaches literature (including science fiction), cultural history (including the history of science) and is an acknowledged innovator in the field of Computer Aided Instruction (CAI), a subject on which he has lectured and consulted.

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