No Collusion, But No Break For Trump! Mueller’s Report Paves Way For Impeachment Proceedings!
Our Washington reporter Alexander Khristenko with the details.
Mueller's report is surrounded by so many speculations and loose interpretations that there was no chance a second theatrical reading wouldn't happen. More than 100 people, actors, directors, artists, and simply Trump haters began reading Mueller's report onstage in Trump's home borough of Queens, New York. They were reading on weekends replacing each other, day and night, 24/7. Against his own will, Mueller became a Moliere of sorts, with his entire investigation turning into a farce.
The author of the spectacle, Mueller himself, after taking a dramatic two-year pause, finally appeared before cameras at the US Department of Justice. His appearance at such a significant place emphasized that the Special Counsel considers himself a team player and isn't ready to go against the position of the Justice Department, which firmly believes that Trump is innocent. On the other hand, Mueller also helped the Democrats by presenting certain aspects in an obscure fashion. This phrase alone is something Trump's opponents immediately got their claws into.
Robert Mueller, former Special Counsel: «If we were sure the president committed no crimes, we'd have said so».
He discovered no collusion with Russia and is still grumpy about that.
«The Special Counsel's statement sounds like he urges Congress to continue what he started. This process has a name which begins with the letter I».
The Democrat demand an additional investigation against Trump in Congress, despite the fact that the Special Counsel questioned 500 witnesses and got nothing. In the end, he resigned, closing his office forever.
Newt Gingrich, former congressman: «Mueller got to see everybody but the president, who replied to him in writing. Mueller put people in solitary cells. One woman spent there more than half the sentence she was facing. That's not American at all. Mueller had the best lawyers and prosecutors from the ranks of Trump's opponents. And what did they achieve after two years of work? They proved nothing».
No evidence means not guilty. Case closed. This triumphant collage showing Mueller's resignation was published on social networks by Trump.
— Do you think they'll try to impeach you?
Donald Trump, President of USA: «I don't see how. In theory, they can, but I can't imagine our courts allowing that. I've never thought that it's possible to use the word. I believe that's a dirty word, impeachment. It's a dirty, nasty, disgusting word that has nothing to do with me because there was no crime».
However, in order to get reelected in 2020, Trump also needs victories in his foreign policies. Trump himself tightly tied them to his domestic policies. It's all about the tariffs he curses other countries with; tariffs that harm his own country. Thus, the trade war with China resulted in the giant Chinese market closing to many American exporters. On June 1st, Beijing adopted 25% counter-tariffs on US goods totaling sixty billion dollars. Moreover, in response to Huawei being added to a blacklist, China's preparing its own list of, I quote, «unreliable foreign companies that violate market rules and cut off the availability of parts.» And here's what could be the most serious threat. The official state media has reported that China may limit the sales of rare earth elements to the US. These materials are already scarce. Their absence may halt the production of America's most innovative products, including weapons, satellites, lasers, and superconductors.
Stock markets plummeted, expecting the worst. However, this week, Trump cast away politics and acted not like a president but like the head of a corporation, a businessman that tramples his rivals and pursues only financial gain. For example, he removed India from the list of countries that can freely import goods in the US and announced new customs fees for products from Mexico until the country stops the illegal migrant flow. He began with a small 5% fee but threatened to take it up to 25%.
Yet another border breach occurred in El Paso County, Texas. American police officers arrested 1,000 people in one day. However, temporary detention camps are already overcrowded. Migrants are kept in unhygienic conditions. The President of Mexico sent a letter to Trump in which he tried to explain that one can't resolve social issues through fees and enforcement methods. However, it can severely damage the economic situation, says the US Department of Commerce. Mexico is one of America's biggest trading partners, exporting thousands of products, from tomatoes to car parts. Trump's call to produce everything in America won't work this time.
Mark Hamrick, financial analyst: «This supply chain cannot be created in America overnight. We can't grow cherry tomatoes in Iowa in winter. We don't have tequila production at our fingertips. New tariffs will only increase costs to American citizens and companies. The tariffs he threatens to adapt will lead to chaos in our economy».
Brussels and London fear the same thing, discussing various Brexit options. Trump supported the toughest scenario. Shortly before his visit, he suggested that Britain should refuse to pay the EU, I quote, «the scam bill», and walk away without a deal.
Donald Trump, President of USA: «Well, if I were the British government, I wouldn't pay fifty billion dollars. That's what I would do. I wouldn't pay, that's an enormous sum. If you don't get a fair deal, you need to walk away».
The President of the US also openly supported the former Foreign Secretary of the UK Boris Johnson's candidacy for the position of the PM. That caused outrage in London. Trump got accused of interfering in the internal affairs of the United Kingdom. The former Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind compared Trump to a bull in a china shop, clueless about basic etiquette and diplomacy.
However, the US tends to ignore any kind of rules right now. Congress proposed to adopt five types of sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, or rather the European companies that are taking part in its construction. American senators are going to ban these companies from taking out loans in the US, pay in dollars, and work with US sovereign debt. They'll go to great lengths, including freezing the employees' assets and deporting them from the US. So far, the blackmailing and threats have been ineffective. Rainer Seele, the head of OMV, an Austrian oil and gas company, said that the participants of the Nord Stream 2 project must be protected from US sanctions by the EU.
Alexander Khristenko and Nikolay Koskin, Vesti: News of the Week, Washington, USA.