Putin is delighted with this whole fiasco, especially now that Ukraine is to be blamed for meddling and not Russia
Russian TV Channel, Rossiya 1 aired a segment entitled "Puppet Master and 'Agent'—How to Understand Lavrov's Meeting With Trump", right after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov returned home from his visit with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office last week.
The reason the Russian state media had a field day is that according to Vesti Nedeli, a Sunday news show, hosted by Dmitry Kiselyov, on the same network said it was Trump who asked Lavrov to pose standing near as Trump sat at his desk. It's almost the literal image of a power behind the throne reports the Daily Beast.
Russian state television is confident that Trump would not be removed from office. However, he will have a tough time when he does leave the office.
Mikhail Gusman, first deputy director general of ITAR-TASS, Russia's oldest and largest news agency, predicted: "Sooner or later, the Democrats will come back into power. The next term or the term after that, it doesn't matter... I have an even more unpleasant forecast for Trump. After the White House, he will face a very unhappy period," when he appeared on Sunday Evening With Vladimir Soloviev.
According to Soloviev, Trump should possibly start looking for an apartment in Rostov-on-Don along with Victor Yanukovych because of their common association with Paul Manafort, campaign chairman for the first, and adviser to the second. Not only that, Russian experts and politicians consider both of them to be openly pro-Kremlin.
Putin's propaganda brigade loves the tension that it's causing between the Republicans and the Democrats, and the US with most countries, especially Ukraine. The Russians are basically making the United States the butt of every joke. And Ukraine.
Tightly controlled Russian state-television programs constantly reiterate that Trump doesn't care about Ukraine and gave Putin no reasons to even contemplate concessions in the run-up to the recent Normandy Four summit in Paris.
They take every opportunity to demoralise the Ukrainians with a set of talking points based on the U.S. president's distaste for their country. The host of Who's Against on Rossiya-1, Dmitry Kulikov, along with pro-Kremlin guests, took repeated jabs at the Ukrainian panelist, boasting about the meeting between Trump and Lavrov.
"There are no disagreements or contradictions between Trump and Russia," argued Valery Korovin, director of the Center for Geopolitical Expertise, appearing on the state-television channel Rossiya-24. Korovin insisted that the Democrats in Congress are the main antagonists in the relationship between Russia and the United States.
Dmitry Kiselyov accused the Democrats of joining forces with Hollywood, carrying out various conspiracies in order to undermine Trump's popularity. Reporting for Vesti Nedeli from Washington, Mikhail Antonov used the term "the Cold War."
Rudy Giuliani, acting as the president's personal attorney and determined to divert attention from Trump's impeachment to former Vice President Biden's alleged corruption, recently embarked on an "evidence-gathering" trip to Ukraine.
Shortly after Giuliani's return to the United States, Russian state television started airing video clips of his OAN (One America News Network) "documentary." It basically wants to show that Kyiv meddled in U.S. elections and accuses former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch of "lying under oath in Congress to whitewash [Joe] Biden's corruption."
Obviously Putin is delighted with this whole fiasco, especially now that Ukraine is to be blamed for meddling and not Russia.
The Russian president smugly remarked "Thank God no one is accusing us of interfering in the U.S. elections anymore. Now they're accusing Ukraine."
And thanks to the relentless effort by Russian media, according to Rossiya-1 reporter Valentin Bogdanov, the majority of American Republicans believe that Ukraine interfered in the U.S. elections, with the show airing various clips from Fox News.
The absurdity of such claims is the ammunition Kremlin needed to show the hypocrisy of Republicans the sham that is democracy.
Appearing on The Evening With Vladimir Soloviev in October, political scientist Dmitry Evstafiev argued that Trump has to destroy the Republican Party in order to secure his own long-term survival. The impeachment proceedings seemed to expedite the process, with the GOP's self-immolation for the sake of its "Dear Leader."
Prompted by the head-spinning swerve of the Republicans, Tucker Carlson of Fox News even argued that, in the Ukrainian conflict, the U.S. should be taking the side of Russia. Kremlin-controlled Russian state media doesn't suffer from a similar lack of clarity.
Appearing on Soloviev's show, Semyon Bagdasarov, director of the Moscow-based Center for Middle Eastern and Central Asian Studies, exclaimed: "The United States is the enemy. It is our enemy. It is a hostile state that aims to destroy our country... We are at war!"
And in the meantime, much to Russia's satisfaction, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is still waiting for that critical White House meeting with the American president: the famous "quid pro quo" for Zelensky announcing an investigation that would smear Democratic challenger Joe Biden. As yet, Zelensky hasn't done that, and as yet, no meeting has been set.