Putin Manipulating Trump With Russian Propaganda

Putin Manipulating Trump With Russian Propaganda

Try to imagine a more awful movie than this: Russian Propaganda Machine tricks Donald Trump into teaming up with Putin to start WW3. Hilarity ensues.

Okay, cut the “hilarity ensues” part. But you can probably imagine the ridiculous made-for-tv disaster-film that the above log-line describes.

Except it isn’t a movie. It might be real life.

Russia Accuses Ukraine of Sabotaging Trump

Recently, Russian officials accused Ukraine of actively attempting to sabotage Donald Trump’s Presidential Campaign.  Russia’s intentions might be the scariest part. Keneth Vogel at Politico sums up the basics:

A top Russian official is accusing the Ukrainian government of undermining Donald Trump’s presidential campaign by trashing him on social media and disseminating dirt on one of his close associates.

A spokeswoman for Russia’s Foreign Ministry on Thursday contended that the Ukrainian government over the summer damaged Trump’s campaign by implicating his then-campaign chief Paul Manafort in a corruption scandal involving a pro-Russian Ukrainian political party funded by oligarchs.

So what does this mean? Why is Russia implicating Ukraine in a failed attempt to undermine Trump?

What is to be gained from one sovereign country claiming a second sovereign country interfered in a third sovereign country’s election, but failed and had no effect on the outcome?

I argue that Putin is attempting to manipulate Donald Trump in an effort to gain land and power from Ukraine. Donald Trump is uniquely positioned to be used as a pawn in a Russian land-grab scheme, with Vladimir Putin pulling all of the strings.

How Putin’s Propaganda Could be Influencing Trump

Barack Obama and the Democrats spoke out repeatedly about the possibility of Russia having influenced the election. Now, Putin is redirecting those accusations at Ukraine. As we all remember, Russia invaded Ukraine in 2014 and seized Crimea, and many in the country still believe Putin wants control of the entire country.

To me, Putin’s claims against Ukraine seem to be more than typical Russian propaganda. It appears that they are no longer targeting regular people as propaganda normally does, but specifically targeting an emotional and unbalanced Trump. That is, some of Russia’s propaganda is micro-targeted specifically at Trump and attempts to leverage his prominence for emotional outbursts.

Think about it. The narrative Russia is selling is that Trump’s campaign was attacked by Ukraine and Russia was the friend who got to the bottom of it. Putin knows Trump has a taste for revenge, and pitting him against Ukraine is a solid first step if he doesn’t want any problems from the United States the next time Russia decides to invade Ukraine.

This becomes more realistic when you consider Trump’s rejection of NATO, his substantial ties to Russian Business interests and the history of compliments between he and Putin.

Trump Nato
Trump Nato

Will Russia’s Tactics Work?

Ukraine has already completely backed off any accusations against Paul Manafort.  From Vogel at Politico:

… After Trump’s stunning victory over Clinton in last month’s presidential election, officials with the corruption bureau appeared to backpedal. One was quoted in the Russian tabloid Komsomolskaya Pravda saying, “Mr. Manafort does not have a role in this case.”]

For good reasons, Ukraine decided it would be a political disaster to maintain accusations against a strong Trump ally with Russia breathing down their neck. Ukraine needs the United States, but Russia is creating a fissure. They will continue to do so until Trump rejects Russia outright, or becomes an ally and accidental pawn for Putin.

In my opinion, Russia’s tactics will succeed. To what extent I can’t be certain, but I do think Russia will continue to draw favor from Trump, Putin will continue to play to Trump’s ego, and propaganda will be pushed that specifically targets Donald Trump and his aptitude for knee-jerk emotional reactions.

I predict Russia will raise the stakes in Ukraine with additional military actions in the region, and will continue to do so slowly until Trump makes a firm stance one way or the other.



Ryan Black is a content creator, marketing professional, and political consultant who writes about Progressive Politics.


  • Not accidental;
    From statements made during the campaign, as well as supposedly sane elected officials getting down on their knees to the chump it is not an appears to be statement but a real chump/republican plan. We the people need to adopt the removal of words like appears because most thoughtful people will take those words as uncertainties when they are facts. The uninformed, (being kind here), will use them as ammunition for their cause.

    The republicans have had this plan in effect for many years now. The civil war never ended. “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” is a top ten for republicans today.

    Take a close look Johnny has arrived home. It is a republican dream come true.

  • Interesting thoughts, except for one thing. Here is an investigation report by Politico on the issue of the Ukraine interfering in our election. It was fairly extensive. I didn’t read it as saying Russia is the one implying it. I wonder if after you take a look, you’ll still believe the whole thing is Russia’s propaganda and narrative?

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