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tv   The Trump- Putin Summit  CNN  July 16, 2018 1:00am-2:01am PDT

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this is cnn breaking news. >> welcome to cnn special live coverage of the summit of vladimir putin and donald trump. i'm jake tapper. >> i'm christiane amanpour. we are a couple of hours away from the face-to-face meeting which will happen in the presidential palace. >> within the last few minutes, they put up flags, russian and american participating in a breakfast meeting with the president of finland. he was at the innato summit in brussels. nato has never been stronger. mr. trump was on twitter again taking aim at the russia
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investigation and at the united states. he said the relationship with russia has never been worse thanks to many years of u.s. foolishness and stupidity. now the rigged witch hunt. quite a thing for the united states president to blame russia for bad relations and to blame the investigation and not the cyber attack itself. this coming days after the special counsel and deputy attorney jena announced indictments of 12 russian officers accusing them of hacking the computer network in the 2016 campaign and releasing the information to damage the campaign of hillary clinton. donald trump spoke to cbs on sunday. >> would you ask putin to send them here? >> well, i might. i hadn't thought of that. i'll ask about it. this is during the obama administration. they were doing whatever it was
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during the obama administration. >> here with us is kaitlan collins and international diplomatic editor nic robertson. nic, president trump saying that this happened during the obama administration. which is accurate. why is that relevant? that would be like president obama saying he is not going to do anything against al qaeda because the attacks happened during the bush administration. it doesn't matter. >> it is all question of whether you take ownership for it or not. i think perhaps it is telling that we heard from secretary of homeland security kirstjen nielsen on saturday saying look it is happening right now in the mid terms. russia is scoping out and probing in all states. meddling and mid term electric elections in a few -- mid term elections in a few months.
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president trump saying this is president obama's issue has handed the ammunition. this is happening on your watch. this is the time that you need to say something to president putin. he has been standed t handed th ammunition. he has it. he has the opportunity to take ownership. >> let's not forget, these are not just any russians. this is gru. these people do not put a step anywhere without the highest authority from the russian leadership as the investigation assumed from the very beginning. we know that president putin is going to win big time from this because he will come out of his isolation. he hosted a fantastic world cup. he wants to be treated like a world leader with this president. what do the white house officials who you talk to say is in it for president trump?
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>> vladimir putin wins a lot by showing up. he established a lot. like you said, he is coming off the world cup. he has so much. president trump sees this in a way that he cannot win. he made clear on twitter with the sarcastic remark. he said no matter what happens during the summit, it will not be importaportrayed. they are framing this as a get to know you meeting. that is not the meeting you have with someone days after the justice department announces russian officials, members of the government, were part of this attack on an american election. the white house is trying to say it is good for him to meet with world leaders regardless they attacked an american election. they had the same argument when he sat down with the north korean dictator. why sit down with this person in the last year when they have been threatened the united states? the white house believes they
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accomplish something. they believe he is trying to one-up president obama by sitting down with him. i would not be surprised if we see a cordial relationship with them when they let cameras in the room. a lot of questions here about what the president could promise to vladimir putin during the sit down with syria at the top. as we have seen from president trump's comments, he is inclined to withdraw troops from syria. he got into several arguments with military officials over keeping troops there. putin would be more than happy to see withdraw. >> nic, one concern is president trump's commitment to nato's treaty. specifically article v. the only time that article has been invoked is after the 9/11 attacks.
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big question how much trump is committed to that considering what the russians have up their sleeves on the baltics and estonia and lithuania. >> those countries are feeling exposed at the moment and have significant troops there. we are talking hundreds and tens of thousands. there is a trip wire placed there should russia decide to come across the border in any shape or form. whether it is green men or cyber intrusions. the baltic states feel sensitive. we have the joint military exercises. nato exercises. united states playing a key role. president trump indicated he might be inclined to maybe suspend or change the military exercises much as he did suddenly out of the blue in the
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subm summit with kim jong-un and north korea. we heard that they need to be treated fairly. fairly. it is if president putin will come and say, you are treating us unfairly. we annexed crimea and you put sanctions on us. maybe you should lift sanctions off us. putin will come in scheming with a full bag of ideas. idea of not being treated fairly. it should be the opposite. >> they are essentially giving the white house talking points. we know what putin said to the president. he bad mouths president obama to him. that is what donald trump loves to hear. he talks about the deep state. he says people are essentially trying to undermine the relationship between putin and trump. donald trump has bought into that. that is what he is inclined to believe. hearing that from putin is him playing into his hands. he knows how to have a good
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relationship with him. >> kaitlan collins and nic, thank you. we will go to sam kiley. putin has rehabilitated in many people's eyes with the world cup. i talked to the u.s. ambassador to the nato summit last week and i asked about the discord and whether that is music to president putin's ears. she agreed this was precarious. how is it being viewed there? are they making hay out of this situation? >> reporter: there have been jokes, christiane amanpour, on the program called "60 minutes" in which they talk about trump being russia y's man. it is strategic and absolutely part of the russia agenda trying
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to undermine and sow friction within the nato members. that is something that donald trump has achieved in the last week. not to withstand increased funding to nato. ands also the european union in the strategic sense with the expansion of the former soviet bloc and alliances with moscow and not part of the european union. that is vladimir putin who has seen russian power and strength eroded in the buffer nations vanishing into the hands of what russia would see as enemy and rivals. considering that, there is delight about the attitude taken by president trump and simultaneously with that, there are signs and i have spoken over months with intelligence officers from a number of countries that the trump administration is no longer
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trusted with top level secret western intelligence. this is a former kgb agent. he will meet with a former american president as a form of vanity. there is a lot to play for vladimir putin. hard to see how president trump will play this situation. >> sam, thanks. we'll check in with you throughout the day. particularly as the meeting get under way. in the u.s., the summit could have implications for president trump. >> so let's discuss that. again, we are joined by the u.s. editor of "the economist." i'll throw out the devil's advocate to you. people were saying the same thing when president reagan came into office and met with the soviet leaders. i have been at this long enough to say i was peripherally involved in covering a little
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bit of the 1985 meeting with reagan and gorbachev. that got on well. is there any way you see these two very like minded leaders seeing something in each other that will benefit these tensions and decrease tensions? or are we still in an era of maximum disruption? >> i think you can say some potential benefit. we are talking about the countries of the two largest nuclear arsenals of the world pointed at each other. there is some interest of mankind to have relationship there. with the reagan/gorbachev parallel. reagan went in with the reputation of being a happy warrior. cold warrior. no one more hawkish on russia than reagan.
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fast forward to 2018, trump's reaction is different than reagan's. putin wants status quo in russia. not seeing society or politics change in russia. the difference overwhelm me rather than the parallels. >> john, i want your reaction to the tweet from gary kasperoff. a critic of trump and putin. putin wants legitimacy. weakening u.s. commit to g7, nato and eu. lower defenses. trump's help in all these things. how much of that laundry list do you think trump is willing to help him with? >> the concern with the story is
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a huge hole at the middle of it in the sense of trump and putin will meet one-on-one. we have been told there is no agenda. nobody in the room except interpreters. there is not press conference afterwards. there is a speech made, but no press. we really will never know what was said. we have concerns of what might be said. rewind back to the beginning of the trump presidency when steve bannon and mike flynn still in the white house. the idea that ukraine or crimea may be recognized as russian and in return, some deal done in the middle east. that idea went way when bannon and flynn came out and john kelly came in. we seem to be back where we were at the beginning of 2017 with the idea that maybe some kind of grand deal that can be done
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involving the middle east. i don't know what that would look like. it is certainly is something allies are concerned about. >> thank you, john. the idea that the foreign government hacked another country's election in a way is shocking to many. including the u.s. intelligence chief. coming up, we hear his dire warnings of russian cyber attacks. stay with us.
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welcome back to helsinki, finland. we are live from the seapol. >> the presidential palace is just behind us and that is where the meeting -- which ever way. sorry. it is getting a bit like that. that's where the meeting between president trump and putin will take place in a couple hours from now. >> they added and raised flags from russia, united states and finland a short time ago. president trump and his team attended a working breakfast ahead of the summit with putin. he predicted he and the russian leader will do fine with the talks. despite the sunny day in helsinki, the accusations of russian interference loom over like a dark cloud. >> mr. trump will press putin. how hard he'll press is anyone's
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guess with no press in the room. over the weekend, the director of the national intelligence warned the cyber attacks are reaching a critical point and it is time to confront russia. >> the warning lights are blinking red again. the day the digital infrastructure that serves this country is literally under attack. russia has been the most aggressive foreign actor. no question. the warning signs are there. the system is blinking. >> joining us to discuss the cnn military analyst is retired rear admiral john kirby. admiral, thank you for joining us. what was your reaction when you saw president trump's tweet a few minutes ago when he blamed the poor state of u.s./russian relations on u.s. foolishness
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and the investigation into the cyber attack on the u.s. and not on the cyber attack? >> one this is a dream for vladimir putin. this is what putin would want to donald trump to say. it is kremlin talking points. it is just wrong, number two. the investigation itself is having any impact on u.s./russian relations. putin knows that. he will use it to his advantage. what is affecting u.s./russian relations is russian aggression in ukraine and syria. this was an attack by russia on our system. a cyber attack. >> do you think one of the crucial results from the summit could be a deal on the middle east or on syria? you heard all of this writing and intelligence about quid pro quo. trump agreeing for russia trying to get him to leave?
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>> i have been waved off from state department official that there will be any communication or joint statement as a result of this meeting. they don't want to call it a summit. they are calling it a meeting. they will talk about syria. if there is one area where the united states and russia can cooperate better is on syria. the system has broken down. our presence is based on isis. russia wants to prop up assad because they want to keep a toe-hold. >> if president trump gets russia to agree to get something for assad staying, russia and iran win. >> they will win. exactly. listen, you and i have talked about this many times and i have been on several meetings with k kerry after lavrov. the russians cannot deliver. if there is a tedeal to get ass out, russia cannot make that
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happen. iran is in for the national security interests to prop up hezbollah. they have no interest of getting out. >> president trump and his team will say, president bush tried it his way. that did not work. president obama tried it his way. first with the reset and being more aggressive in the second term. that didn't work. why not give it a shot with president trump's way? putin grabbed territory in georgia during bush years. grabbed territory in crimea and ukraine in obama years. hasn't done anything yet during trump's years. why not give it a try? >> i don't disagree, jake. i think in light of the indictment and because of the indictment it is really important to meet today. trying a different approach or trying to get something better started with russia is always a good thing. i don't dispute that. that said, what bothers me is trump is going in with blinders on or rose-colored glasses.
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i don't think he fully understands the scope and depth of russian activity and malign intent in the middle east and world. he is naive going into this. >> you heard the impression from dan coates and others take a hard line against russia. a good cop-bad cop situation. trump willing to criticize putin and the rest of the administration does. >> there is a schizophrenia here. that is not an agenda. there is a schizophrenia here. you see the same with russia as with north korea. the administration has given ukraine lethal arms. they kept in place sanctions.
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they expelled 60 diplomats. an argument can be made that president trump's team has been tough on putin. mr. trump cannot criticize putin or personally take on a tough approach or strong stance against vladimir putin. he knows that going into the meeting. he will try to drive a truck through the gap between trump and the nation al security team. >> you called this schizophrenia. the idea that the trump administration has been tough on russia and illegal activities while president trump has not so much in his words. he signed off on everything his administration is doing. what do your former colleagues at the state department and pentagon think when you talk to them. obviously without naming them. what do they think? >> they are frustrated.
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they see the issues clearly and in plain sight. they have watched this unfold for years. it is frustrating for them. the machine of the bureaucracy is churning out ideas to get at the russians. and the president cannot get on board. while we could comfort ourselves and say this is happening and jake, the president is signing off on it, but he is the president of the united states. what he says matters. when he sends a mixed signal about our relations and bilateral relations with russia, it sets the rest of the government back which in turn sets our allies and partners back. >> john kirby, thank you. president trump is not the only one tweeting ahead of the summit. next, hillary clinton is taking aim at her one-time rival. my name is jeff sheldon,
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is the presidential palace. president trump attended a working breakfast with the finland president. mr. trump expects the meeting to be just fine. >> meanwhile, the former presidential candidate hillary clinton posted a tweet herself writing, great world cup. question for president trump as he meets putin. do you know which team you play for? >> so, mr. trump, do you think you can charm putin? here is the look at trying to win over the russian leader. president trump is the fourth u.s. president to hold a summit with vladimir putin. >> putin's fine. he's fine. we're all fine. we're people. will i be prepared? >> so as president trump prepares or doesn't to meet the russian leader, he should remember others have been there before him with very mixed success. presidents clinton and bush and
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obama all tried kicking things off with flattery. >> deeply committed to his country. >> capable of doing it. >> extraordinary work that you have done on behalf of the russian people. >> in 2001, bush took a soulful approach. >> i looked the man in the eye. i was able to get a sense of his soul. >> bush and obama tried to soften the russian leader by finding common interests. >> i would like to congratulation putin for being the only one who caught a fish. >> expertise in judo and my skills in basketball. >> the relationship has been warm in the past. >> now for the first time i can tell you that you are a disaster. [ laughter ] >> still, american presidents have taken note of the former kgb agent's unique negotiating
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technique. >> putin says would you like to meet my dog. out comes a giant hound across the yard. putin says bigger, stronger and faster than barney. >> and with putin officials, language barrier has led to awkward diplomacy. >> we worked hard to get the right russian word. >> you got it wrong. >> still if there is one thing we know about president trump, he will do it his own way. >> putin may be the easiest of them all. who would think? >> for analysis, let's go to the political panel. i want to bring in from washington josh rogin. cnn political analyst. and we have luke harding, an author and foreign correspondent for "the guardian." luke, let's start with you. president trump saying that this meeting with vladimir putin could be the easiest of his meetings on this european trip. what is your response?
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>> jake, we keep having to remind ourselves this is not normal. a russian president who subverted the attack on the american elections. then you have an american president who is saying this is the easiest meeting of all after the disaster trip to brussels and united kingdom and so on. this is a curious state of affairs. and the chaos of the presidency of trump, the one constant is trump's flattering of putin and refusal to criticize him and deni denialism. >> josh, i want to go back to jake's reminisce of what happen happened. president trump brought out his fierce dog to meet angela merkel
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when they first met and he knew she was afraid of dogs. this was a real power-play. she got through it with her head held high. given what happened at the summit in nato and the tone of pouring cold water over theresa may before "the sun" interview before the meeting. and now a foe. what will they take into the meeting meet? >> -- meeting? >> i think you are right. vladimir putin prepares for his meetings with the world leaders skillfully. and from the reporting, his approach to president trump is to flatter him. not to intimidate him. he does that for a simple reason. because it works. how do we know it works? we have seen president trump talk about how putin is nice to him and he wants to return that
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kindness. it is a different approach. it shows the same person-to-person relationships that vladimir putin does his research and figures out how he wants to approach each meeting. as you pointed out rightly again when we see president trump's behavior over the last weeks and months, it seems to be working. president trump is doing the things that president putin wants him to do. undermining alliances and questioning the nato alliance and questioning the eu and questioning america's commitment to both. these are things in russia's strategic interests. when they go into the meeting, putin doesn't have to bring the big, scary dog. he has to bring compliments. putin knows that well. >> luke, the indictments of 12 military intelligence officials from russia by a grand jury and the department of justice on friday is one reason why people talked about why this summit and meeting should be scrapped.
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although president trump will not do that. in the uk, the fact that the same unit, military intelligence unit of the russian army is now thought to be who was behind the poisoning of individuals in the uk is also being cited as a reason why this should not take place. >> yeah. i think a big test for trump is if he does what theresa may wants him to do. raise what happened in salisbury and poisoning of sergei skripal and murder of dawn sturgess. picked up the bottle of the novichok agent. mrs. may wants this. i'm skeptical that donald trump wants to do this because his record is appeasemenappeasement. just to go to the meeting and preparation that vladimir putin has done. this meeting strikes me a bit
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like a kgb case officer meeting an agent for an annual report. that is what vladimir putin used to do when he worked for the kgb in the 1980s. enormous psychological profile of president trump. russians will be overtly taping the meeting and analyze and pore over every word that donald trump says. we, by which i mean the global public, will not have a read from the conversation. we will not know what he may or may not say. there is plenty of expertise here. the white house has a scholar fiona hill, but she will not be in the room. we have to wait and see what donald trump admits to saying afterwards. >> josh, to you, continuing that theme, we know history told us when president kennedy met with
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russian leader in 1961, he said he savaged me. he was a young new president and unprepared. a couple months later the berlin wall goes up. what do people like fiona hill or others in the administration, do you know what they have been saying to the president about how to be the best prepared and given the different times right now, but still very tense times between the two nations? >> there has been plenty of reporting to show that at east each -- at each of his interacti interactions, president trump has been advised to do certain things. he ignores that advice. he was encouraged not to congratulate putin on the recent win. he defied that. they talk all the time. they have their own rapport. what his advisors are doing and others trying to build as much
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predictability into the meeting as much as possible given the circumstanc circumstances. that amount of predictability is fairly low. there is no agenda. there is no set deliverables. no set joint statement. what there are are outlines. what do we hope to discuss with putin? what do we hope to get from him? what do we not want to give him? if president trump follows that advice, that will be a reasonably good summit in the minds of his advisors. >> josh and luke, thank you. the clock is ticking down to the trump/putin summit in the building behind us. in the meantime, which countries will the president call friend or foe? more details on the guessing game next. i have type 2 diabetes.
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president trump's critics and members of the administration find it hard to know which countries he will consider a friend or foe. on sunday, mr. trump turned on one of the united states biggest allies in the interview with cbs. take a lynn listen -- take a listen. >> we have a lot of foes. the european union is a foe.
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you would not think of the you are -- european union. china is a foe economically. that doesn't mean they are bad. it doesn't mean anything. it means they are competitors. they want to do well. >> so you heard donald trump say they are a foe. that is not accounting for on alleged tus -- donald tusk. all of this coming as the meeting is about to get under way. let's get more insight on it from the swedish prime minister carl bild who joins me from croat croatia. carl, what do you make of the language of foes and competitors. president trump lumping even allies in his vision of who he says is treating the united states unfairly.
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>> to be taken literally and seriously is debatable when it comes to president trump. it is nothing less than a political earthquake. the global order and what we still have in the work is depending on the relationship e and the united states. that is quite something. i don't think we really represent the united states when he says that. >> he narrows it down with the issue of trade and most of his characterization of other nations does come down to trade and also paying dues as he said in brussels to the nato allies. coming off the brussels summit and coming off the meeting in london and these comments he just made, what do you
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anticipate? what are your feelings of the outcome of the meeting with president putin? >> what worries a lot of europeans is the track record of trump. he makes friends from putin or someone else. they are all friends. while the true friend, europeans and canadians are subject to vicious attacks or whatever it is all the time. the theory is what will happen in helsinki at worst is trump will show and putin will get away with substance. that substance is of concern to europeans. we had violations of fundamen l fundamental. we had shooting down of mh-17. these are series issues on the table. -- these are serious issues on
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the table. >> i'm struck by what you said. a show versus substance and putin will win on substance side. what do you think he is coming here to achieve? >> putin is a deliberate and careful operator. i think what he would like to see is to say to trump we are friends. forget about the past. let's move on. forget about ukraine. forget about syria. and that's it. then move on. what i hope could come out of it at best would be some agreement to start dialogue of denuclearization. that is what interests putin and in that case, the infrastructure as well. >> let's hope that comes out of it. carl bildt, former swedish prime
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minister. joining us live. >> thank you. the summit with the presidents is over an hour away. more of cnn's continued live coverage from helsinki, finland just ahead.
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president trump and his team have wrapped up a breakfast meeting with the president of finland and now the president of the united states is just over an hour away from the summit with russian president vladimir putin. one-on-one meeting expected to last an hour. although, with so much in the summit, this meeting, who knows what will happen. christiane amanpour, a lot of people in washington, d.c. and republicans who have reputationally hawkish on russia for the last decade are concerned over what will happen with the meeting. >> our allies around the world is concerned because where in comes off as the president of the united states the leader of the western democratic system, including the security system, has in public seemed to try to denigrate, if you like, allies
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and some in russia are saying the u.s. president is doing what vladimir putin has been doing and not been able to achieve. all that said, it is important to see what comes of the meeting. maybe there is a chemistry that resets the clock. perhaps the wrong word to say. also we are in helsinki which has had a tradition of bringing the two sides together throughout the years of the cold war until now. we will see what happens. i think putin goes in with a planning advantage. >> president trump earlier today and this morning, tweeting that the united states is to blame for the bad state or poor state of russian and u.s. relations and blaming the investigation on the russian interference in the election on the united states. that tweet was liked by the russian foreign ministry. you talk about trump going after allies.
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trump going at the united states or previous administrations and the russian foreign ministry approving or liking that message. >> why wouldn't they? it suits them. i think the russians are keen to come out of the isolation. isolation imposed specifically by the invasion and annexation of crimea in 2014. people have said some of the things happened on previous presidents' watches. it is now -- history did not start back then and nor does it start now. it is a continuum. president trump, the allies hope, will take a march to vladimir putin and trying to figure out ways where there are areas of joint interests and importance to try to resolve some of the untenable tension which has thrown up competition between russia for the influence and the west. >> colonel wh-- >> certainly when it comes to
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arm arms control, there are areas of cooperation. the director of national intelligence sounding the alarm of how russia continues to stage cyber attacks on the united states. other countries, too. russia being the worst actor of them all. there's a lot of hope that president trump will confront putin on that even while trying to forge this bond where they can work together on issues. >> that is true. the united states has something to learn from european countries. in the elections in france and germany, they fought back against russian intelligence hacking into their elections. i think the other thing is putin and trump may do a deal over syria which inn vocvolves iran. iranian supreme leader has been here meeting. they acquired a $50 billion
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investment in the energy economy and the u.s. cutting off allies doing business with the iran deal. >> that is it for me and christiane amanpour. stay tuned to cnn for more of the coverage of the putin/trump summit here in helsinki, finland. this is not a bed. it's a high-tech revolution in sleep. the new sleep number 360 smart bed. it intelligently senses your movement and automatically adjusts on each side to keep you both comfortable. and snoring? how smart is that? smarter sleep. to help you lose your dad bod, train for that marathon, and wake up with the patience of a saint.
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gig-speed network and add voice and tv for $34.90 more per month. call or go on line today. this is cnn breaking news. >> welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is "new day." it is monday, july 16th. 5:00 in new york. that is where you see the pair of alisyn and john. i'm chris cuomo in helsinki. happy to be in finland. good morning. they would say history is going to be made here in just a little bit. president trump will meet one-on-one with russian president vladimir putin. just days after 12 russian military intelligence officers indicted by robert mueller for interfering in the 2016 u.s. election.


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