After the Helsinki meeting, Russia and United States still enemies
It seems, US president Trump has a priorities list, and waging war with Russia is not one of them. He goes around the world, trying to sell US weapons and natural gas, destroy old trade agreements and impose new ones and force US allies to behave the way he wants them to. Just ask NATO members.
This list has trade on the top, relations with China not far behind, and with the war of words showing, Iran is in his sight as well. This would tell us, internationaly, it is economy, profits and jobs at home on the one hand, and interests of Israel and Saudi Arabia, he is most concerned with. Russia is just not that important. And, why would it be? A nuclear war with that country is not on any sane man mind, neither a conventional one, as they are not about to launch an invasion into Western Europe. Russians are a military competitor, but in the modern world, that doesn’t mean that much. Economicaly, they are not important. China is.
Both Trump and Putin must have gone into the meeting feeling, it is more for show, than for any tangible results. And yes, the US president was quick to proclaim, at the press conference after the meeting, that relationship ‘changed as of about four hours ago.’ For the better, of course, as he noted, that ‘getting along with Russia is a good thing.’ That is all. That was the result of the meeting. Those words, that Trump could bring back home and show to his supporters, that he is trying to talk to the Russians, that things are getting better under his command. A bit like with North Koreans, where he gave in to their demands, as they were always prepared to trade a lot for lasting peace with United States, so he did with Putin.
Well, Russians knew before and know after, that nothing really changed. There was the benefit, that now they could proclaim, how Russia is not really isolated anymore, which it never was, except in minds of Americans, who seem to think, they are the world, but anyways, it was good for propaganda purposes. The only real result might have been, and that is behind the scenes, that Americans gave in Syria, not reacting to Syrian government forces taking control of the rebel province of Daraa, on the border with Israel, in exchange for Russians convincing Iranians, not to move in. That would be Trump working as a spokesperson for Israel. Something, that is not considered problematic in the US, even if Israel wields far more influence on policy making, than Russia, with all the accusations goring around, ever could.
United States will not lift sanctions against Russia, and Russians know that. They have been doing everything, to make themselves more resilient, to redirect their trade away from the West and reality, they don’t need United States anymore. Americans will also continue to support Ukraine, supplying them with weapons. As Trump made clear, there will be a competition in Europe, for who should supply Europeans with gas. That is something Trump understands, as it is in the field of economy, where he can make profits for US firms. He doesn’t fear Russian tanks, but he has a problem with Russian gas being sold to Germany.
No, Trump didn’t cave to Putin.
No matter what Trumps thinks, no matter his priorities, in the United States, in much of the media and larger parts of political elites, Russia is considered an enemy. That it interfered in US presidential elections, is a story told to the naive, the real reason seems to be, that those forces want to destroy a country, they see as dangerous to their interests, a country, that can stand up to the worlds biggest bully, ever ready to bomb opponents into submission. On the other side, calling Trump a traitor is in their minds good for internal political reasons. They seem to be wrong. US presidents approval is above 40 % and he has high support among Republicans. Maintaining the Russia story doesn’t really hurt him that much and the ones, who are succeptible to nonsense about how Trump may have been planted by the Russians, nay, Soviets, long ago, will never vote for him anyway.
In reality, Trump can’t do much for US Russian relationship. He can talk, but the real power now lies elsewhere. What he can be good for, is preventing this relationship from becoming too dangerous. Talk is always better than war. But then, some fools really think, Russia allready declared war on the US. With those few trolls on the internet and RT not liking Hillary that much.