A Cold War Summit Offers Lessons for Trump Before Putin Meeting

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tags: Putin, JFK, Trump, Khrushchev

A new president inexperienced in the intricacies of superpower politics meets his Russian rival for the first time. There are disputes over Crimea, nuclear weapons and completely different conceptions of an acceptable status quo as Washington and Moscow vie for global influence. The Americans arrive with an unclear agenda; the Russians have a very clear one.

While it sounds like the coming encounter between President Trump and the current Russian leader, Vladimir V. Putin — scheduled for Friday — this actually was a description of President John F. Kennedy’s first face-to-face session with Premier Nikita S. Khrushchev of the Soviet Union in June 1961.

“You know, Mr. Kennedy, we voted for you,” Khrushchev said, as he recalled in his 1970 memoir. It is a line that, if one believes American intelligence reports, Mr. Putin could repeat, but probably will not.

Read entire article at NYT

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