Why is Trump so popular with governments that claim to despise America?

Patrick Hilsman writes: Donald Trump is everything the Russian, Syrian and Iranian governments claim to despise about America. More than any US presidential candidate in modern history, he resembles a Soviet propaganda poster. Trump is a greedy, vain, Islamophobic, sexually amoral capitalist. He received a standing ovation at the pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC, he believes in mass violence against America’s perceived opponents, especially Muslims.

So why is Trump so popular with governments that claim to despise America?

Trump has a proven record of praising or at the very least making excuses for authoritarians, from Russian President Vladimir Putin to deposed Libyan leader Gaddafi and most recently Iraq’s Saddam Hussein. Trump’s wave of authoritarian populism comes at a perfect time for strongmen like Putin, Assad, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who are circling the wagons, not against invading armies or perceived threats from abroad, but rather against creeping modernity that threatens the closed belief systems their regimes are built on.

Trump has come to embody 21st century authoritarian principals and the rejection of long standing multiculturalism, and the message is resonating with governments and organizations that ostensibly hate one another. [Continue reading…]

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