Trump Can’t Stop Touting His Chummy Relationships With Authoritarian Leaders

US-VOTE-TRUMP - Credit: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images
US-VOTE-TRUMP - Credit: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Donald Trump boasted his relationships with Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un on the third and final installment of Sean Hannity’s Fox News interview. During the segment, Hannity spouted off a list of names as Trump offered his knee-jerk reaction to each one. To kick things off, the host started with Putin.

“I got along with him great,” said Trump. “Had I been president, he would’ve been much better off because he wouldn’t have gone into Ukraine. But ultimately, he’s gonna take over all of Ukraine.”

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Throughout the Hannity interview, Trump has made reference on his promise that he could end the war in Ukraine in 24 hours, and has claimed he would do so before he was even sworn in if he won the election. Despite his repeated promises, he has refrained from sharing his exact plans on how he would end the war.

When Hannity said, “Xi,” Trump told the host that he and Jinping got along “great until Covid came in.” He then claimed that he made an “an unbelievable deal” that involved China giving the U.S. “$50 billion a year to our farmers and our manufacturers.”

When discussing his relationship with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, Trump casually reasoned that “it’s nice to get along” with somebody who has “nuclear weapons” and can “blow up the world.”

Trump has a history of praising authoritarian leaders. In February, the former president cheered on Putin’s “peace force” of “army tanks” in Ukraine, calling the autocrat a “genius.” And last year, Hannity practically begged Trump to condemn Putin as “evil” or an “enemy.”

After several attempts to get Trump to denounce Putin, Hannity asked, “Did you view Vladimir Putin and people like President Xi and Kim Jong-un and the Iranian mullahs as enemies that you needed to keep close?”

“I got along with them well,” Trump replied. “That doesn’t mean they’re good people. It doesn’t mean anything other than the fact that I understood them and perhaps they understood me. Maybe they understood me even better.”

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