Trump Calms Nuclear Anxiety with Release of Putin Letter

After tweet on expanding arms capabilities, president-elect releases note on mutual cooperation with Russia

In an effort to tamp down concern over a tweet calling for expanded nuclear capabilities, President-Elect Donald Trump on Friday released a letter offering holiday greetings from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The letter, dated Dec. 15, wishes Trump a merry Christmas and happy New Year and reiterates the importance of the U.S.-Russian relationship.

“A very nice letter from Vladimir Putin; his thoughts are so correct.”

“Serious global and regional challenges, which our countries have to face in recent years, show that the relations between Russia and the U.S. remain an important factor in ensuring stability and security of the modern world,” the letter states. “I hope that after you assume the position of the President of the United States of America we will be able – by acting in a constructive and pragmatic manner — to take real steps to restore the framework of bilateral cooperation in different areas as well as bring our level of collaboration on the international scene to a qualitatively new level.”

In a prepared statement to the media, Trump seconded Putin’s sentiments.

“A very nice letter from Vladimir Putin; his thoughts are so correct,” he stated. “I hope both sides are able to live up to these thoughts, and we do not have to travel an alternate path.”

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Trump on Thursday upset the Washington foreign policy Establishment with this tweet: “The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.”

During an interview Friday with Mika Brzezinski on MSNBC, Trump said America would not be surpassed in the nuclear arena.

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“Let there be an arms race, because we will outmatch them at every pass and outlast them all,” he said.

Modernizing the country’s aging nuclear arsenal hardly is controversial. It is the official policy of the outgoing Obama administration.

After months of declaring Trump a Putin puppet, Trump’s critics must have experienced whiplash suggesting that the president-elect was risking a dangerous confrontation with Russia. Maybe now that Trump has released Putin’s letter and offered his own kind words, they’ll go back to calling him a puppet again.

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